Her hair has been cropped and styled, dyed and bleached - all in the name of art. But the constant changes have taken such a toll on Hollywood star Carey Mulligan's locks that she is said to have turned to a hair-loss supplement to try to restore her tresses to their former glory.
The Oscar-nominated British actress has apparently been reduced to tears by the state of her hair, taking the protein capsules in a desperate bid to make it grow back after a very dramatic cut.
Her naturally mousy and normally long hair has gone through a variety of styles in her time in Hollywood, but the most startling was when she bleached it peroxide blonde for her role in the 2009 Johnny Depp gangster movie Public Enemies. Then last year, she had her locks cropped into a tight, elfin style for the Wall Street sequel Money Never Sleeps, but she has since struggled to get it to grow back.
The 25-year-old is said to have turned to a supplement sold in salons for £25 (Dh150) per month.
"She would do anything to have long, natural hair again, but she can't grow it," said a friend. While her hair is slowly but surely growing back, it's taking a long time and she doesn't feel she will have her confidence back until she's happy with it." Carey is said to want to return to the look she had for her breakthrough role in An Education - the film that earned her the Academy Award nomination - where her hair was long, dyed dark brown and fashioned into a retro Sixties style.
"Before she got the part in An Education, her hair was light brown and long and textured," said the source. "It went well past her shoulders. "When she auditioned for the role she knew it required her to dye her hair dark brown and she was initially intrigued to see what she would look like. When the colourist had finished with her new look, she was delighted and felt it really suited her."
In the summer of 2008 Carey was cast in Public Enemies, set in the 1930s, for which she had to turn to the peroxide bottle.
"The role was exciting for her," adds the friend. "Carey is not overly concerned with aesthetics but is incredibly professional, so she was stoic about having to sacrifice her looks for her art. She was eager to please, so she obliged. "But when she finished filming she burst into tears because of the damage the peroxide had done."
Carey continued to dye her hair blonde for Wall Street 2 and also cut it short. She tinted it red afterwards, but it was back to being short and blonde in her latest film, Never Let Me Go.
But now she wants her long locks back and in as natural a way as possible.