The Hairstyles of Legend of Zhen Huan: Zhen Huan (Part II)

Chinese DramasDrama FashionsDrama ReviewsOther

This is Part II of my hairstyles round-up for Zhen Huan’s character in Legend of Zhen Huan.  Check out Part I if you haven’t already!  😉


When she wore it:

Starting around episode 28.


This is one of Zhen Huan’s simpler hairstyles.  It is much more hassle-free in comparison to some of her other hairstyles–there aren’t any dangling accessories hanging next to her face or super heavy accessories.  I imagine some of her other hairstyles must be much heavier and and troublesome to wear!  I think it’s fitting that Zhen Huan wears this during her first pregnancy..because really, who would want to wear a heavy headpiece while pregnant?

The main feature of this hairstyle is the kingfisher feather accessories.  The accessories are mainly floral designs, with one butterfly on the left side.  They are accented with small pearls and green and red jewels/precious stones.  The hairpiece itself is basically like a U-shaped bun that goes around Zhen Huan’s head.

Most memorable scene:

Of course, the scene that sticks out the most is when Zhen Huan kneels outside because of Hua Fei’s punishment.  The scene itself is pretty traumatic since Zhen Huan miscarries as a result of it.  The most memorable outfit with this hairstyle is Zhen Huan’s bright green robe, which she wears on the day of the miscarriage.


When she wore it:

Starting around episode 45.  Zhen Huan wears this when she leaves the palace to become a nun.


This is another one of Zhen Huan’s simple hairstyles.  While in the palace, Zhen Huan’s hair is almost always tied up/pulled back, arranged into a perfect hairstyle.  The only time her hair is down in the palace is when she’s going to sleep.  Here, her hair is much freer.  She has side-swept bangs, and she lets most of her hair down.  Zhen Huan only wears a few simple hair pins during this time, one of which is probably the same flower pin that she wore earlier on in the drama.   At first I thought this was just because she’s no longer in the palace, so she doesn’t dress up.  But it may also show how she is finally free of the strife and facades that go along with the palace life.

Most memorable scene:

When Zhen Huan finds out that 17th is still alive…but she already is set to return to the palace.


When she wore it:

Starting from eps 41-44.


This is one of the two golden hairstyles that Zhen Huan wears.  This one has a symmetrical design with gold and red detailing.  Two golden phoenixes (facing outwards) hold the dangling accessories.  Behind those phoenixes are two birds–made of thin gold.   And behind these birds are some flower accessories.  They are almost black in color and are totally flat, so they’re kinda hard to see.  The center of the headpiece seems to be a bird in flight–but I’m not 100% certain.  The top part of the middle looks like tail feathers to me.  There are also four dark red beads in the center of the hairstyle.

This hairstyle is mainly associated with Zhen Huan’s return to the palace, in which she starts wearing darker lip colors, contours her cheeks more dramatically, and wears more prominent eyeliner and eye shadow.  Prior to this, she wears the hairstyle with a lighter lip color and less dramatic makeup.

Most memorable scene:

There are two scenes associated with this hairstyle.  Firstly, Zhen Huan wears this when she is about to get promoted to a higher rank.  But because of the Empress’ scheming, she ends up wearing Empress Chun Yuan’s clothes and thus falls out of favor with the emperor.  Interestingly enough, she wears this hairstyle again when she reenters the palace and receives a big promotion.  At this point, she switches to her new makeup style.  I would’ve thought that Zhen Huan wouldn’t wear the hairstyle again so that she wouldn’t remind the emperor of what happened.  But instead, she wears it again and this time, rightfully receives her promotion.


When she wore it:

Soon after she returns to the palace, starting around eps 53-56.


This actually probably my #1 favorite hairstyle of Zhen Huan’s.  It looks amazing no matter what angle I look at it from.  The headpiece is quite lavish with accessories adorning all parts of it–even the back!  I think the extravagance of this piece is kind of the point–it’s supposed to make a big impression and thus, could be seen as almost over the top or excessive.  Zhen Huan wears this when she returns to the palace as Xi Gui Fei and reasserts herself as the top consort in the harem.  Her hairstyle shows off her status.

Unfortunately, this hairstyle has so many little details that it’s hard for me to do it justice with my description.  The style is asymmetrical; it extends more around the left side of Zhen Huan’s head, and is shorter on the right side of her head.  The long dangling buyao accessory on the right balances out the asymmetry on the left.  The colors used are mainly the bright turquoise of the kingfisher feathers, pale pink, light blue, silver, and red.  My pictures here don’t really show this, but the red accents contrast nicely against the blue/turquoise.  There are also hints of green, dark blue, and dark orange colors–as well as pearls–throughout the hairstyle.  Behind all the accessories, there is a black braided/lattice detailing.

The big surprise is that there is even more on the back of the dian zi.  The back is literally covered in more silver, pale pink, and light blue floral accessories.    Also, there is actually this kind of looped part of the dian zi that curves around the back and connects to the front.


^Butterfly accessory

Right near the dangling buyao is a silver butterfly accessory.  And below that are even more pink flower hair pins!

Most memorable scene:

I don’t have one particular scene that sticks out for me with this hairstyle.   Zhen Huan basically struts around in this headpiece while reasserting her power over her rivals.


When she wore it:

Starting around eps 60-63.


This is perhaps Zhen Huan’s most iconic look because she has SOOO many awesome scenes with this hairstyle.  I think the reason why there are so many great scenes with this style is simply because Zhen Huan wears this so often!  I am surprised that she persisted with wearing this style…because so many bad things happened while she was wearing it.  Not saying that I thought she’d be superstitious, but more like…I would’ve thought that wearing it would remind her of everything that happened in it.  Or who knows, maybe that’s a part of why she wears this during her last scene with the emperor….because she never forgot all that happened.

This headpiece is much simpler than the previous one, but it still suits Zhen Huan’s power status very well. It has deeper colors and makes a striking impression with its rose pins.  The roses are lightly brushed with glitter.  I’m not sure how to describe the rest of her accessories.  There seem to be some that are made of stiff cording that is twisted into swirls.  The outline of the dian zi is lined with small silver beads.

There are way too many memorable scenes to count with this hairstyle!

Zhen Huan’s last scene with the emperor:


When Mei Zhuang dies:


When 17th prince dies, when the emperor suspects that Zhen Huan had an affair with Dr. Wen, and on and on.

Which hairstyle of Zhen Huan’s is your favorite?

You can read more posts from The Hairstyle of Legend of Zhen Huan series:


I'm heisui, an Asian drama blogger and the creator of My Drama Tea. I love stories and writing, so I watch dramas and blog. I especially have a penchant for Japanese and Chinese dramas, and those hidden gems that are waiting to be discovered. Oh, and I'm Legend of Zhen Huan-obsessed!
Give Away #1: Love Me If You Dare Goodies! [CLOSED]
Drama Detox: Reasons to Go On Hiatus
  • I favor the last one. Not because of the hair style in particular though because while it is amazing, I really liked the yellow outfit she wore with it on the bottom two pictures of the compilation. It is made kind of long in comparison to the other clothing in the drama if I remember correctly and probably have to be worn with the Qing dynasty shoes they wore in the drama but it makes her look taller and I liked the way it emphasized the way she walked.

    I remember Sun Li saying in the interview that she asked the costume team to hollow out some of the head pieces she had to wear. I guess they didn’t hollow out some of the other actresses’ head pieces and some of them were so heavy that after they were removed, they left kind of a “bald” spot or an area with less hair… kind of an impression on their heads… I guess it must have been temporary or else I’m sure a lot of them would have been pissed…

  • This is an interesting post!
    I haven’t watched this drama but currently watching her in Legend of Mi Yue which also some beautiful hairstyles I must say though I am only around episode 22, and a long way to go but I am impressed with Sun Li, first time watching her:P

    Not a fan of Qing dynasty era dramas, must be because of the half bald hairstyles for the men LOL

  • Ling Rong next? She has been through about 5 ranks I think? (Daying (Promise), Changzai (Lingering), Guiren (Precious/Noble Lady), Pin (Concubine), then finally Fei (Consort))

  • You finally post ZH’s hairstyle!

    We have the same favourite. I really like the asymmetrical hairstyle. It’s so pretty and elegant. Never thought that blue and pink will be so pretty together.

    But you forgot to upload her last hairstyle in the drama, you know, the one ZH has as empress dowager where she finally stands in the top of imperial family. You should post that too. Sun Li’s acting when she confront the empress for the last time is really superb, her look, expression and even the way she curls her lips are awesome.

      • There will be part 3? You’re awesome. I actually wish that ZH wear the asymmetrical one longer than she does in the drama.

        I don’t know if you’re familiar with fanfiction, but I end up writing alternative universe anime fanfiction based on ZH. That much I like the drama.

  • So from your posts it seems like the subtitles you were watching weren’t very accurate on the titles of ranks of the concubines. Just thought I’d post here as a Chinese speaker (and lover of history) to clarify:

    The closest translations of the rankings are as follows from highest to lowest and with the number allowed in the harem. I’ll also include the Chinese pin yin:

    -Empress (1) huang hou
    -Imperial Noble Consort (1) huang gui fei
    -Noble Consort (2) gui fei
    -Consort (4) fei
    -concubine (6) pin

    Any rank below these are considered like the second tier and there can be as many as the emperor wants.

    -Noble Lady (gui ren)
    -1st class female attendant (chang zai)
    -2nd class female attendant (da ying)
    -Serving maid (basically a palace made that can sleep with the emperor and doesn’t really have a ranking)

    Rankings are extremely important because they dictate status and hierarchy. It dictates how much monthly allowance you have including food and luxury items as well as power in the harem.

    It also relates to the Chinese hierarchy of wives vs concubines . Even though a man can have many women, he only has one “official” wife and maayybbe a secondary wife, but everyone else is only a concubine. This is considered “shu.” They are not “official” and do not have as much status in a household. Women born of “shu” (from concubines) do not have status. Order of marriage doesn’t matter that much either because you can take a woman as a concubine without havinf an official wife yet. It has a lot to do with status of the woman you’re taking in.

    That’s why the Empress in this drama often talks about how she’s “shu chu” so she was only given the status of “secondary wife” even though she married the emperor first. And she gets offended when ppl talk about how she’s “shu
    chu.” That’s also probably why she’s so insecure and wants to hold on to the top position in the harem so bad.

  • Oh yeah one more thing:

    Titles are also super important. So most concubines just use their surname with their ranking. Like Shen Mei Zhuang at first is just Noble Lady Shen (Shen Gui Ren), but Zhen Huan got a title right off the bat cuz the emperor liked her, so he gave her the title of “wan” (which roughly means beauty). That’s why she’s known by her title along with her ranking instead of by her surname “zhen.”

    Hua Fei (or Consort Hua), her full name is Nian Shi Lan. But the emperor gave her the title of Hua which roughly means luxury/glory. I know in some of your posts you refer to her as the Princess of Glory which is just suuuccchh horrible translation and subtitling from whom ever subbed it. She’s a consort in most of the show until she gets demoted and her title taken away from her, that’s why later in the show she’s referred to as Consort Nian and then Nian Da Ying (2nd Attendant Lady Nian).

    Also, the subbed versions I’ve seen do not explain clearly, and are horribly inconsistent with how they sub other ppl referring to the main characters. So I’ll do a quick explanation of it. Early in like the second episode Fan Ruo GuGu (the palace maid) explains rankings and etiquette to Zhen Huan and Ling Rong.

    Essentially it goes like this:
    The only “real/official” masters/owners (zhu zi) of the palace are the Emperor, Empress Dowager, and Empress. Every other consort or concubine can only be referred to as “lesser mistress” or “young mistress” (xiao zhu).

    If you’re in the second tier of ranking that I illustrated in my previous comment, your servants will refer to you as “xiao zhu” (young mistress) out of courtesy or by your official ranking and title.

    However, if you become a concubine (pin) or higher, then you can be referred to as “my lady” (niang niang). This is ONLY reserved to those of pin or higher. This is why you hear Zhen Huan refer to Consort Hua has “Hua Fei niang niang” or you hear servants calling her just by “niang niang.”

    Further more, the Forbidden City is basically like a little city with a bunch of separate houses. You guys should look up a map of it to understand better. It’s not like a european castle where it’s just one big castle. There are bunch of little “mansions” in the Forbidden City (the characters in this show refer to them as palace). Chinese mansions are all built in a rectangle with a garden in the middle, and there’s only one level, no upstairs. So in each mansion, there are four sides. So there’s a bunch of different mansions in the forbidden city, and each concubine lives in one of these.

    In some mansions, there are several concubines living there (one on each side of the rectangle). That’s why sometimes in the show you see the concubines fighting and walking past each other’s rooms and watching the emperor go into another concubines “side” of the mansion. In others if the emperor says so specifically, they get the whole mansion to themselves (So Consort Hua had Yi Kun Gong all to herself and later Zhen Huan gets Yong Shou Gong all to herself.)

    So what happens if there are several concubines in one mansion? Well, the one with the highest ranking is the “zhu wei” which means she’s officially in charge of that mansion, or that household. Lesser ranked concubines have to listen to her arrangements, and technically so do the servants. And only those of pin (concubine) rank or higher can be the leader of a mansion.

    Each little mansion has it’s own kitchen and servants, and based on your ranking you get a certain number of servants, allowance, food ration, luxury items, etc etc.

Blogging takes hours, commenting takes minutes. Thanks for your comment.

What’s New?

-I'm back and watching Ruyi Zhuan (Ruyi's Royal Love in the Palace)!

Currently Watching


  • Ruyi’s Royal Love in the Palace

Heisui’s Tweets

Follow My Drama Tea

Twitter Googleplus RSS Bloglovin Feedly
Follow My Drama Tea on

Subscribe via Email!

Join 605 other subscribers

Popular Posts

Ruyi's Royal Love in the Palace: Eps 10-14 Review
Ruyi's Royal Love in the Palace: Ep 69 Check-In
The Legend of Zhen Huan: Eps 45-52
The Nail Guards of Zhen Huan Zhuan
The Pros & Cons of Empresses in the Palace (U.S. Version)
Lan Ling Wang: Eps 45-46 (Finale) / Strategic Yu Wen Yong/Daniel Chan Watching
Sound of the Desert (Da Mo Yao): Eps 28-35 Final Review
Xin Bu Bu Jing Xin - Time to Love (Movie Review)


%d bloggers like this: