Why do people with red hair get picked on in the UK?

The Great British Mag content team updated the article ‘Why do people with red hair get picked on’ on 14 February, 2020.

Unfortunately there is a long history of making fun of people with ginger hair in the UK.

It all started in the Middle Ages when witch-hunting manual, Malleus Maleficarum, warned that red hair and green eyes were marks of a witch.

People at the time also (wrongly, we must add!) thought parents conceived red heads if they had sex during menstruation.

But since then attitudes have progressed, although once in a while you still hear about cases of ginger-bullying and exclusion.

A ginger University of Cork student recently conducted a study that found more than 90% of red-haired men had been victimised simply because of their hair colour.

He concluded “bullying of gingers” is “one of the last socially accepted forms of prejudice against people for a trait they were born with.”

It’s often seen as “harmless banter” if you’re joking around with friends but definitely be careful before you start making fun of someone with fiery hair.

These days there are lots of events celebrating red-haired people, like Kiss A Ginger Day (12 January), Redhead Day UK (16 May) and National Love Your Red Hair day (5 November).

If you have a question for our resident Brit drop us an email at askabrit@greatbritishmag.co.uk.