Two months after The Oprah Winfrey Show launched nationally in September 1986, was still sporting the no-nonsense anchorwoman style that had served her in her previous career. Minimal makeup and berry lips completed her TV-ready look.
As Oprah’s talk show career took off, so did her hair and makeup. She sported majorly teased ’80s curls and vivid makeup to offset her boldly patterned blouse and statement necklace at an event in 1987.
For the People’s Choice Awards in 1998, Oprah debuted a totally new do – tightly spiraled locks. It wasn’t the only new thing she was trying out – her magazine debut, O, had launched less than a year before.
The new millennium marked Oprah’s official transformation from mere talk show host to true life guru. For her popular four-city “Personal Growth Summit” in 2000, the star showed up in a neatly coiffed cut and natural makeup. Her follow-up in 2001 went for $185 a ticket!
Oprah’s popularity continued to reach a fever pitch – a year after this photo was taken, she was named Forbes’s richest and most popular star – and her hair reflected that. She sported a mane full of voluminous curls at an event in 2004.
For her TV special, Oprah Winfrey’s Legends Ball, the host sported a more understatedly glamorous look than she had at past events. Her longer, gently curled do and crimson lips were perfect to honor women including Tina Turner and Diana Ross.
In 2008, the star admitted to losing her battle with her weight, but she had mastered her hair, wearing sleek, controlled, center-parted curls with autumnal makeup and chandelier earrings for an event in N.Y.C.
Having conquered the worlds of literature, television and business, the star tried her hand at fashion, co-hosting the Costume Institute’s Met Gala in a plunging navy Oscar de la Renta gown with a full skirt – and serious hair to match!
Oprah announced that in 2011, she’d end her talk show and launch a new TV channel, the Oprah Winfrey Network. To fête the launch of OWN, the star slicked back her strands into a serious style befitting the media mogul she has become.