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/ Source: TODAY
By Ree Hines

Ellen DeGeneres kicked off season 17 of her talk show with the same close-cropped blond hairstyle her viewers have known and loved for a very long time.

But over the summer, the 61-year-old host briefly said goodbye to blond and tried out an all-natural look that fans have never seen before.

The host revealed that her transformation came about after a hair-color calamity left her do — well, what was left of it — seriously damaged last spring.

On Tuesday's episode of "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," she explained, "Long story short: My hair was long and then it was short and then it fell out."

So she spent her summer vacation attempting a hairdo do-over.

"My hairdresser said I needed to shave it really short so that the color was completely out of it and I would grow new virgin hair," DeGeneres explained. "And since I wasn't working over the summer, that's what I did."

The result? Just take a look at this beautiful silver-tinged brunette.

Ellen DeGeneres let her natural hair color grow out over the summer.

"I'd never seen my natural color," she said. "I'd been coloring my hair for so long."

It was a first for her wife, Portia de Rossi, too, who loved the look. In fact, for a while, DeGeneres thought her blond days were really behind her — that is until one of her show's producers convinced her she really should go back to her not-so-natural roots.

However, going back to blond proved problematic once again. It took two visits and several hours.

"I don't know how (it was) five hours to color this," she said gesturing to her inch-long locks. "Some punk-ass kid can tag an entire overpass in six minutes and I'm five hours to do this."

But if her hair falls out again, this time she has a plan B — otherwise known as a wig.

No hair? No worries. Ellen DeGeneres went wig shopping just in case her latest hair color caused more problems.Michael Rozman/Warner Bros. / The Ellen DeGeneres Show

Now that's a transformation!