One reason we see so many different hair colors in anime is that it helps to set up characters before they even open their mouths.
Red hair usually goes to the hothead of the group. Pink is usually worn by the cute one. Meanwhile, anime characters with blue hair usually have cool and collected personalities that bring balance to the cast.
Of course, not every blue-haired character fits that trope! Here are my picks for the best anime characters with blue hair and why they're cool no matter what show they're in.
10. Nagisa Shiota (Assassination Classroom)
When your teacher is an invincible tentacle monster, you know your life is going to get interesting. Such is the case in Assassination Classroom.
Nagisa Shiota is one of the students of Class 3-E, taught by Korosensei. Everyone in that class has one main task: find a way to kill Korosensei before he blows up the planet in one year.
While Nagisa isn't as strong or clever his classmates, he's one of the most adept killers among them—a fact that frightens him when someone points it out.
Nagisa's blue hair even becomes an important plot point when we learn that his mother wanted a girl and forced him to grow it long.
9. Shun Kaido (The Disastrous Life of Saiki K)
Many people go through "eighth-grader syndrome" (chunibyo in Japanese, meaning "middle-school second-year syndrome").
This phenomenon is common among early teens, who get lost in their imaginations and develop delusions about having secret knowledge about the world or even secret abilities (like magic).
In The Disastrous Life of Saiki K, Shun Kaido is firmly in that phase—despite being well into his high school years. He greets the world like a shonen protagonist, posing and flexing to impress people who have no idea what he's doing.
While it would be annoying to deal with that every day, his earnestness when talking about the dark world only he knows about is somehow endearing in the show's 15-minute segments.
8. Nejire Hado (My Hero Academia)
It takes a lot to stand out in My Hero Academia, a sprawling series with multiple classrooms full of students, each with their own unique traits as they vie for as much screen time as they can earn.
Nejire Hado manages to be memorable because of her Quirk—she can send out waves of energy from her hands and feet—and because she does such a great job when mentoring younger characters.
Her long blue hair that flows down in spirals is a great example of an anime marrying character design and powers.
7. Aqua (KonoSuba: God's Blessing on This Wonderous World!)
Despite being a literal goddess in search of a champion to help save the world, it's clear early on in KonoSuba that Aqua is utterly useless.
She's loud, cowardly, and prone to using her powers in the most unhelpful ways possible. And when she does manage to do something helpful, it's usually by accident.
And yet, her divine presence is enough to lift what would otherwise be a silly isekai anime into something far more interesting.
Kazuma thought he was gaming the system when he brought Aqua with him to this new world—and he's been regretting it ever since.
6. Vivi Nefertari (One Piece)
We all hold to certain stereotypes for people of royalty, but Vivi Nefertari manages to subvert many of those expectations.
Rather than being spoiled and needy, she's truly kind and she cares deeply about her people. She's eager to get her hands dirty and do whatever it takes to help people, which makes her one of the most well-rounded characters in One Piece.
Her introduction as Miss Wednesday is one of the most fun moments in the early story, and she remains great for long after that.
5. Rei Ayanami (Neon Genesis Evangelion)
Why do so many blue-haired anime characters have cold and aloof personalities? Some of that is rooted in Rei Ayanami of Neon Genesis Evangelion, one of anime's most iconic protagonists.
Rei is distant, shy, and unwilling to connect emotionally with anyone around her (because she knows that her impending death looms over everything that she does).
Like the rest of the Neon Genesis Evangelion cast, there's more to her than first meets the eye. In fact, she becomes one of the most interesting relationships in Shinji's young life!
4. Sailor Mercury (Sailor Moon)
Every group of heroes needs at least one person to be the brains of the outfit. In Sailor Moon, that duty falls to Sailor Mercury.
Not only does she have mastery over water, but she also sports a genius-level intellect and a handheld supercomputer that helps her plan the best strategies for the Sailor Guardians.
All of this means Sailor Mercury has played a vital role in saving the world on multiple occasions, making her one of the best blue-haired anime characters to ever grace the small screen.
3. Rem (Re:Zero)
Why have one adorable maid when you can have two? Rem is one half of an iconic duo (the other half being her sister, Ram).
The pair serve as supporting characters and occasional antagonists to Natsuki Subaru's adventures in Re:Zero.
Like many anime characters with blue hair, Rem has a quiet, shy, and superficially polite personality (unlike her sister, who has pink hair and a more sardonic and outgoing personality that contrasts sharply).
What's great about Rem is that she quickly becomes one of Subaru's most ardent supporters and admirers after he saves her life, which endears us and makes us love her all the more.
2. Botan (Yu Yu Hakusho)
When you picture an entity like "the messenger of death," you probably imagine a dark figure in a long hooded cloak.
But in Yu Yu Hakusho, when Yusuke Urameshi met his untimely death, he encountered someone who went against type in every way: a cute girl with long blue hair, who flew around by riding an oar.
Her name is Botan and this version of Death is sassy and personable, serving as Yusuke's contact with the Spirit World and his ferry between worlds for his role as Spirit Detective.
We love Botan for how she subverts expectations and cements herself as one of the most unique and memorable Grim Reapers in anime.
1. Bulma (Dragon Ball)
Bulma remains one of the most famous female anime characters of all time, making her an easy choice to top this list.
She was introduced in the very first chapter of Dragon Ball and grew up alongside the main hero Goku, using her ability to invent new gadgets to provide fundamental support in nearly every story arc.
Simply put: Bulma is an absolute genius. Without Bulma, there's no Dragon Ball, which would have changed the world of anime forever. For that, she's one of the most important anime characters with blue hair.