20 Most Popular Red-Haired Anime Characters (Ranked)

best red haired anime characters

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Red hair, as portrayed in anime, differs from real-world red hair, often leaning towards a vibrant red hue rather than the orange shade associated with natural redheads. Characters with red hair in anime are commonly depicted as passionate, adventurous, slightly aggressive, hot-headed, seductive, feisty, and enthusiastic.

These traits are often attributed to both male and female red-haired characters, with males tending to exhibit more overt expressions. In this article, we’ll present a list of 20 noteworthy red-haired anime characters, considering factors like popularity and overall awesomeness. The compilation will encompass a diverse range of characters from various franchises and genres.

20. Karin (Naruto)

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Karin served as the caretaker of Orochimaru’s southern lair, overseeing prisoners and assisting in experiments. After Sasuke defeats Orochimaru, he recruits Karin into his team “Hebi” for her unique chakra-sensing abilities. Initially hesitant due to her guard position, Karin’s feelings toward Sasuke evolve when left alone with him. She attempts to persuade Sasuke to part ways with Suigetsu, and upon his return, she feigns interest in joining their journey. The team, including new member Jūgo, embarks on a mission to gather information about Itachi. Karin, originally from Kusa, met Sasuke during the chūnin exam, where he defended her from a bear in the “Forest of Death.” It is later revealed that Orochimaru rescued her from assailants after the exam.

19. Yoshino Fujieda (Digimon)

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Yoshino “Yoshi” Fujieda, the eldest on the team, takes on a nurturing role as a big sister to her partners. Despite her mature demeanor, Yoshi struggles with self-belief due to an intense inferiority complex stemming from her older sisters’ influence during her childhood. Her partner, Lalamon, plays a crucial role in helping her overcome this complex.

18. Mito Jūjō (Seraph of the End)

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Mito Jūjō is a minor character in Seraph of the End, a member of Guren’s squad, and holds the rank of colonel in the Japanese Imperial Demon Army. Equipped with cursed gear that enables her to combat vampires using her fists, Mito engages in the Battle of Shinjuku, practices against Shinoa’s force at the Ebina rest area, and participates in a hundred-man assault on vampire nobles in Nagoya alongside her squad.

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17. Kurama (YuYu Hakusho)

Kurama

Kurama is a friend and comrade of Yusuke in YuYu Hakusho franchise, as well as a former accomplice of Hiei. A student at Meiho High School, he resides with his human mother, Shiori, and is the human reincarnation of Youko, an ancient thief demon with a fox-like appearance. Despite his gentle and sensitive exterior, Kurama is a cunning and experienced fighter, known among demons for his ruthless nature towards enemies. As the smartest member of Yusuke’s group, he often serves as a mediator during conflicts and adds a touch of mischief to the team dynamics.

16. Mila Babicheva (Yuri!!! on ICE)

Mila Babicheva

Mila Babicheva is a tall and strong female individual skater with wavy auburn hair and deep blue eyes. Often seen in her workout outfit, Mila cares for her teammates and has a sense of humor. Despite her small figure, she can lift Yuri Plisetsky over her head. Known for her strength, she once confronted and beat up her ex-boyfriend for cheating. Mila is a student of Yakov Feltsman and is ranked third in the women’s international individual standings. She enjoys teasing Yuri and playfully mocks Georgi Popovich during his short program. Additionally, Mila was previously in a relationship with a hockey player before the events of the series.

15. Chelsea (Akame ga Kill!)

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Chelsea from Akame ga Kill!, initially working under a cruel viceroy, grew nihilistic until discovering the Gaea Foundation. Using the Teigu from the foundation, she assassinated the viceroy, bringing positive change. Joining the Revolutionary Army, she fought alongside Babara Oreburg and Taeko against the Imperial Assassins. Chelsea was captured impersonating Gai’s debt collector but later joined the Oarburgh clan to eliminate Elite Seven. During a spy mission, she got involved in an unexpected situation orchestrated by Merraid, Gill, and Cassandra. Chelsea resisted but was part of the encounter.

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14. Sora (No Game No Life)

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Sora, the 18-year-old elder brother of Shiro, lacks a girlfriend and fears being forever single, resulting in playful advances toward Stephanie. Despite quirks, he’s fiercely protective of Shiro, committed to her upbringing. Sora exudes self-confidence, relying on sharp intellect, manipulation skills, and unconventional logic as a formidable player. Initially skeptical of humanity’s intelligence, his faith was restored by Shiro. When separated from her, Sora loses confidence and identity.

13. Zora (Black Clover)

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Zora Ideale, a Black Bull member, sports a leather mask, revealing only his mouth. Cynical and disrespectful, he holds contempt for nobles and teammates alike. Known for unpredictability and humor, he wields ash-based magic, excelling in magical traps that reflect others’ magic. Zora’s father, Zara, was the first commoner in the Magic Knights, killed by his comrades for associating with nobles. Seeking justice, Zora joins Yami’s team, remaining on a mission to eliminate corrupt Magic Knights. He later takes part in the Royal Knights’ election alongside Asta and Mimosa.

12. Shanks (One Piece)

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“Red-Haired” Shanks, leader of the Red Hair Pirates and one of the Four Emperors in the New World, was a member of the legendary Roger Pirates. Starting as an apprentice with Buggy, he later formed his crew after Gol D. Roger’s demise. Shanks, who inspired Monkey D. Luffy to become a pirate, entrusted Luffy with the Gomu Gomu no Mi and the iconic Straw Hat, promising a future reunion.

11. Sasori (Naruto)

Sasori

Sasori, a former resident of the Suna village, joined Akatsuki after leaving two decades ago due to his experiments on human bodies. As a puppeteer like Kankurō, Sasori’s skills are unmatched, and he elevates his art to an unparalleled level, making him a formidable opponent. His proficiency extends to poison, and he incorporates personal puppets, such as the Hiruko, into his combat style. Despite a failed attempt to recreate his parents through puppets, Chiyo, his grandmother, ultimately plays a crucial role in defeating him.

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10. Battler Ushiromiya (Umineko no Naku Koro ni)

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Battler, the central character in the story, is Rudolf’s son from his first marriage. After his mother’s death and Rudolf’s subsequent marriage to Kyrie, Battler left the family in protest but returns after his maternal grandparents’ deaths. Despite a slightly mischievous nature, Battler is pragmatic and dismissive of occult matters. In the story, he becomes the opponent of the Golden Witch Beatrice, tasked with unraveling the mysteries of Rokkenjima while challenging Beatrice’s claims of magical involvement.

9. Shō Hinakawa (Psycho-Pass)

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Sho Hinakawa, an enforcer in Division 01 of the Criminal Investigation Division, is a man in his 20s known for his average height and strong physique. Despite his shy and reserved demeanor, he excels in hologram analysis, demonstrating his genius by identifying Kirito Kamui’s holographic disguise. Additionally, Hinakawa is proficient in distinguishing various drugs. His past is marked by severe depression, leading to struggles with drug addiction at some point in his life.

8. Rias Gremory (High School DxD)

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Rias Gremory from High School DxD, the high school Madonna and Issei’s lover, is more than she appears. Unbeknownst to many, she is the Crimson-Haired Ruin, the heir to the powerful demon dynasty Gremory. Under the guise of a Japan-Scandinavia student exchange participant, she leads the occult research club, secretly a haven for demons under her command. Holding the rank of “King” in the chess-like hierarchy, Rias directs her pieces, including Issei. Gifted with almost invincible abilities and a keen interest in Issei’s latent power, she resurrects him as her servant, revealing her connection to a Demon King, Lord Sirzerch, and the shared power of destruction between them.

7. Eijiro Kirishima (My Hero Academia)

Eijiro Kirishima

Eijiro Kirishima, a lively and impetuous student of class 1-A, possesses the Hardening Quirk, allowing him to sharpen and harden his skin at varying levels of hardness. This versatile ability grants him both offensive and defensive advantages. With rigorous training, Kirishima has extended the duration and increased the hardness of his transformation, achieving near invulnerability in his monstrous state, albeit for a limited time. During his internship under Pro Hero Fat Gum, he, alongside Suneater, actively participates in the assault on the Shie Hassaikai.

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6. Satori Tendō (Haikyū!!)

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Tendō is a cheerful and sardonic individual who delights in teasing both teammates and opponents, particularly relishing the latter’s defeat. Despite his loud and playful demeanor, he transforms into an intimidating figure during the game, reveling in the expression of defeat on his opponents’ faces. Tendō is highly confident in his blocking skills, relying on “guess blocking” with almost infallible intuition. However, as the game progresses, he discovers that his guesses are not always accurate, especially when faced with the perceptive Hinata. Despite being perceived as creepy or strange, Tendō embraces his unique qualities, finding confidence as a middle blocker.

5. Daisuke Motomiya (Digimon)

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Daisuke (Davis) Motomiya, the protagonist of the second season, accidentally stumbles upon the Digital World and, along with T.K. and Kari, becomes a leader of the new group of chosen ones. Boastful and stubborn, he harbors unrequited feelings for Kari and forms a strong bond with his partner Digimon, Veemon. Skilled in football like his idol Tai, Daisuke possesses the symbols of Courage, Friendship, and Miracle. In the future, he becomes a noodle seller and raises a son with similar glasses and a DemiVeemon.

4. Shōto Todoroki (My Hero Academia)

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A recommended student in Deku’s class, Shoto Todoroki possesses the Quirk “Half-Cold Half-Hot,” enabling him to generate fire from his left side and ice from his right. To optimize his powers, he must alternate between the sides, avoiding the risk of frostbite or burns. Skilled in creating ice mountains and intense flames, he becomes formidable when using both sides simultaneously. Despite his strength, he struggles with shaping the ice. Regarded as the class’s strongest, he is the son of Endeavor, the second-best hero after All Might.

3. Gaara (Naruto)

Gaara

Gaara, a ninja from Suna, initially appears before the chūnin exam with his siblings, Kankurō and Temari. Born as the host to a tailed demon by his father, the Fourth Kazekage, Gaara faces ostracism, struggles to control the Tailed Beast, and adopts a ruthless demeanor due to the belief that he’s a village curse. Naruto’s influence transforms Gaara, leading him to become Suna’s Fifth Kazekage in the manga’s second part, marking a significant shift in his perspective and purpose.

2. Renji Abarai (Bleach)

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Renji Abarai, a childhood friend of Rukia from Rukongai, becomes estranged when she is adopted into the noble Kuchiki family. Prior to Rukia’s departure to the human world in Bleach, Renji is promoted to lieutenant of the Gotei 13’s 6th Division. Despite not showing it initially, he holds a deep attachment to Rukia and aspires to surpass Captain Kuchiki. Renji has passed through Divisions 11 and 5, forming strong bonds with Captain Zaraki’s gang, Momo Hinamori, Kira Izuru, and Ichigo. While he and Ichigo often bicker, they can unite as a formidable team in battles, especially against Aizen. Renji’s playful teasing and camaraderie with Ichigo define their complex friendship.

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1. Erza Scarlet (Fairy Tail)

Erza Scarlet

Erza Scarlett, a prominent character in Fairy Tail, holds the title of the strongest woman in the guild. Abducted as a child and forced into slavery during the construction of the Tower of Heaven, Erza forms bonds with fellow captives like Jellal, Miliana, Shaw, Simon, and Wolly. Expelled from the tower by Jellal under external control, she joins Fairy Tail, the guild led by her friend Rob. Initially withdrawn and cautious, Erza gradually opens up to others, with Gray playing a pivotal role in helping her break down her emotional barriers. Her involvement in helping Natsu with his education stems from Ignir’s inability to complete Natsu’s apprenticeship.

Have a character to add to the list? Let us know in the comments below!

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