These Fashion And Beauty Hacks Keep Royals Looking Camera-Ready
| LAST UPDATE 03/29/2023
Dressing like a royal may appear glamorous, but there are actually some strict rules in place. How do they follow them and always look perfectly put together? We're revealing all their secret hacks.
While most of us prioritize comfort over style when choosing our airplane attire, the royals don't have this luxury, as they're often photographed upon exit walking down the stairs.
Kate has often had to do so while holding a child, so having her hair flying in her face and blocking her vision is not an option. For this, she favors hats in the airport as they work to secure the strays out of the way. A fascinator will also do the trick.
Strategically Placed Clutch
We've all been there. Although the dress we carefully selected for the evening fits perfectly when prompted upright, things tend to move around when we bend down, resulting in over-revealing mishaps. Of course, the royals, who are photographed from all angles, have found a handy solution to this.
The mastermind behind this hack was the late Princess Diana, who was photographed numerous times exiting her car with a clutch strategically placed over her cleavage to prevent revealing photos. Although we don't have regular run-ins with the paparazzi, we'll be keeping a clutch in the car for fashion emergencies!
Kate Middleton loves dark eyeliner as much as the rest of us. That being said, she has more to lose if it begins to run a little in the wrong direction. A royal portrait or a diplomatic event doesn't exactly scream 'smudged-eyeliner-appropriate.' Eyeliner incidents are just not on the cards for Kate, so she's found the perfect hack.
Kate opts for gel eyeliner rather than a pencil to ensure it stays exactly where she puts it. Those who use it will be familiar with its magical abilities and withstanding power. It's much less likely to smudge and will always look great. If it's fit for a future queen, it's good for us!
Neutral Nail Polish
Neutral nail polish colors are making a comeback, and there's no secret why. They're classy and elegant and also supposedly royal. The English royal ladies have always favored nude color polishes, following in the footsteps of the late Queen Elizabeth.
Believe it or not, it's actually a royal rule to have well-maintained, lightly colored, or bare nails at all times. What's their nude shade of choice? It's said that the Queen was a big fan of Essie's Ballet Slippers, while Kate likes to mix Essie and Bourjois polishes.
Have you ever noticed that royal ladies tend to wear shoes that look a size too big for them? Well, that's not because they don't know their shoe size but actually a royal fashion hack with good reason. They'll need to walk in those heels for hours at a time, and sizing up helps them to do so.
Although they might look slightly funny in big shoes, the women know that it's more important they are comfortable. Blisters can be a day-ender, and frankly, not an option when it comes to the national duties. Big shoes help to reduce unwanted incidences!
Nothing makes us feel more like a royal than wearing a big, extravagant hat to an event. Although, it's all fun and games until a gust of wind arrives, and the hair accessory is heading off in the other direction. As we stand there hatless, we can't help but wonder how the royals make it look so easy.
No, their hats are not specially designed to fit the exact shape of their heads and stay in place. They have yet another clever fashion hack. Dreamed up by the ever-fashionable Lady Di, the solution is to attach small hair combs to the inside of the hat, holding it in place. This is an easy one to try at home!
A Tonal Approach
Looking to go bold with color but unsure exactly how to do it right? Look no further than Princess Kate, who pulls the look off perfectly time and time again. For her, it's all about mixing it up with the shades - whether that's blues, reds, or anything in between.
"As explained by Fashion TikToker Miranda Holder, "Kate often dresses in head-to-toe one color, but taking it tonal and very slightly mixing up the shade is a surefire way to look elegant, polished, and expensive. Just make sure the color suits you in the first place, and you're good to go."
They might be royals, but that doesn't mean those early morning wake-ups are any less painful than ours. In fact, we'd say theirs are more of a challenging task, as they are expected to be camera ready as well! Just imagine being snapped mere minutes after waking up! This is where the trusty highlighter comes in.
Meghan Markle nailed this beauty trick long before meeting Prince Harry, serving her well during her brief stint as a working royal. Talking to Birchbox in 2014, she revealed how she looks fresh even for a 3 am filming [for Suits]. "To open up your eyes, apply a highlighter in the inner corner," she said. Noted.
Marilyn Monroe may have captured the nation's heart with her iconic skirt flapping moment, but the look wouldn't fly as well for the royal ladies. A winded skirt lift is not considered to be in line with the royal ways, and after a few accidents of her own have made headlines, Kate Middleton has had no choice but to find a solution.
Kate and many other female royals have weights sewn into their skirt or dress hems to ensure they stay down as intended. To try this hack at home, get your hands on some drapery weights from any craft store and get sewing! Future PR crisis averted!
Thicker, Fitted Fabrics
On the topic of flying skirts, there's another handy royal-inspired trick worth considering if you can't seem to get your dresses to keep in place. As demonstrated by Kate and Meghan, heavier and more fitted fabrics will not lift as easily in the wind.
As her A-line silhouettes are more likely to fly up, Kate opts for tweed fabric sets and sheath dresses for her best chances at avoiding a wind-caused wardrobe malfunction. Stock up on these materials and styles if you have an event coming up, and walk around with confidence!
The royals have access to the best doctors and health products in the world, helping to ensure they look and feel their best at all times. Despite all those years in the public eye, Queen Consort Camilla's skin never seems to dull or age out. So, is there something more than good medicare care behind this?
Yes, there is. The reigning monarch keeps to a highly healthy organic diet to ensure her skin continues to glow. She's not vegan, but she makes sure everything she eats is organic. As far as she's concerned, it's a win-win as it not only helps her skin but also protects the environment!
Repeating Is Cool
Update the fashion police because outfit repeating is no longer a crime! While back in the day, we would cringe over an outfit repeater; the royals have worked tirelessly to throw out this age-old principle. Kate and Meghan are frequently spotted re-wearing pieces, showing the rest of the world just how it's done.
Thanks to their efforts, the negative-toned adjective "thrifty" has been thrown out as people increasingly understand the dangers of fast fashion. As demonstrated by the royals, sustainable fashion is the way forward, and being environmentally friendly is the new cool way to approach your daily outfit choices.
Find a Central Point
The ultimate trick to recycling pieces is making sure you love them. Once you have the accessory, skirt, dress, or coat you adore, it's time to work your outfit around it. The favored item should stand at the center, with all accompanying pieces complimenting it perfectly.
Take Meghan's camel-colored Sentaler coat, for example. Yes, she's worn it multiple times, but she always wears it slightly differently, guaranteeing she always looks fresh without splashing the cash. One time it's closed with a hat; the next, it's over the shoulder with a statement dress. The options are endless!
We've all made the mistake of getting overly excited about a pair of shoes. We see them glowing on the shelf and just know in our guts that we need to have them. However, when it's finally time to take them for a spin, we're gutted to realize we can't go further than a block without withering in pain.
If this sounds like a relatable story, it's worth taking notes from the royals who have a comfort-first approach to shoewear. Take the extra time to research the comfier brands and check out reviews before splashing the cash. Your feet will thank you later!
Break In Shoes
If you have your heart set on that uncomfortable pair of heels, there are some royal-inspired tricks to follow in this case. The late Queen Elizabeth knew the pains of new shoes, so she felt strongly about the importance of wearing shoes in. As the commonwealth leader, she understandably had someone to do this for her.
In 2019, royal stylist Angela Kelly explained, "As has been reported a lot in the press, a flunky wears in Her Majesty's shoes to ensure that they are comfortable and that she is always good to go. And yes, I am that flunky." For the rest of us non-royals, we'll be doing the leg work ourselves - round and round the bedroom.
The Flyaway Fix
Take a look at any photo of Meghan Markle, and one feature glares out at you. In an almost unnatural way, the Duchess of Sussex never seems to have a hair out of place. No matter the weather, each hair stays in its designated spot - even the tiny flyaways that usually have us going crazy! So, what is her secret?
Talking to Birchbox in 2014, she spilled the beans. "For my flyaways, I spray hairspray on a small boar bristle toothbrush — a regular toothbrush also works great — to lightly brush them down or smooth the hairline," she explained. "This is especially good for a sleek bun when I am off-camera."
The Coat Dress
One of the more peculiar royal fashion rules dictates that the regal ladies must always keep their coats on. Even when the heat is cranked up inside, that jacket must remain on to maintain a 'ladylike' appearance. While we can't necessarily explain this decree further, we can share their ingenious way around it.
Kate, for example, has discovered the wonder of the coat dress. This item of clothing gives off the energy of a coat but the comfort and style of a dress, helping to ensure she looks appropriate for every occasion without layering up. Although we don't have this rule, these may help us avoid the long coat-check line!
Investing in Eyelash Curlers
We don't know about you, but we tend to have a love-hate relationship with fake lashes. They look lovely in the moment, but hours later, they've gone sticky and clumpy, and we can't seem to get them off. To look natural, the royal ladies aren't allowed to wear false lashes, so they've come up with alternative solutions.
Meghan Markle, who's always been "as minimal and relaxed as it comes," told Birchbox back in 2013 that she could never live without her Shu Uemura eyelash curler. "Even if you don't have a stitch of makeup on… you suddenly look a bit more alive," she said. It's a guaranteed way to avoid a bad-eyelash day!
As we've discovered, being a royal isn't as fun as it looks, but we can imagine those glistening tiaras help to make it all better. Princess Diana carried those expensive hair accessories with elegance and ease, gliding through the crowds with confidence that they wouldn't move out of place. Her secret weapon was a ribbon.
For those wearing a tiara for their prom or wedding, this ribbon trick may be your saving grace. As demonstrated by Lady Di, take a piece of ribbon that matches the color of your hair and then tie it under the tiara. Considering we'd never noticed it on her before, we'd say it's a trick worth knowing. Do they all do this?!
Another fashion rule that may likely put you off being a royal is the pantyhose decree. Royal women are not permitted to bare their legs and must wear skin-colored pantyhose when out in public. This, combined with the fact that they tend to favor heeled footwear, leads to a slippery, accident-prone situation.
This is where sticky pads come to the rescue. As reported by The Sun, the Princes of Wales tends to purchase a particular brand of pantyhose with sticky pads built into the heel. This guarantees there is no slippery movement in her shoes which could result in a royal disaster. We're happy to give them a go!
Mix the Neutrals
As mentioned, royal beauty is all about looking natural, and nowhere does this apply more than on their royal wedding days. Considering the cameras will be snapping photos that will remain in the royal archives, their appearance must stand the test of time. After all, neutral makeup will always be in style.
But there's no fooling us. It may look natural, but we know those Princesses didn't just wake up looking like that. Ironically, much effort goes into achieving that understated look, and we can reveal exactly what's done. Kate, for example, used a combination of neutral eyeshadow shades to create her iconic bridal look.
The late Queen Elizabeth always looked camera-ready, whether she was at a royal wedding or an official engagement. Despite no details ever being shared about her daily skincare routine, there were beauty brands she preferred, and some of her rumored products are affordable.
Her Royal Highness had all her go-to products stocked up at the ready. This included Elizabeth Arden's Beautiful Color Lipstick in the shade Figm, the Clarins Ever Matte powder, the Clarins Hand and Nait Treatment Cream, and soaps from Yardley. Often, these brands were granted royal warrants to guarantee supply.
Nothing says royal occasion more than the overwhelming appearance of fascinators and fancy headpieces. Whether it's a wedding or a Trooping the Color ceremony, winter or summer, these hats keep their hair perfectly in place. If you've taken one of these hats for a spin, you'll be wondering how they do it.
Their secret weapon is the hairnet, which they wear under their hats. Kate is a huge proponent of this trick, as she can be spotted wearing them on most royal occasions. Get the color just right, and no one will ever know how you make it all look so easy.
When you're a member of The Royal Family, you'll be expected to change outfits multiple times daily, depending on your engagement schedule. We imagine their closets can get a little hectic with the speeds at which they are expected to dress! This is where Kate's organization system comes in handy!
To ensure no fashion mistakes are made and to guarantee a quick grab, Kate has established the color-coded system we should all aspire for. In 2020, the Daily Express reported the Princess organizes items according to their destination; yellow for residences, green for hotels, and blue for flights. Accident-proof!
Open Toe Tights
So we know The Royal Family keeps pantyhose suppliers in business, but what happens when they want to wear open-toed heels? We're no royals, but even we're sure that pantyhose lines popping out the top of the shoe doesn't exactly scream class. Is it a strictly closed-shoe policy?
Once again, these crafty royal women have found another loophole, which ensures they stay in accordance with the rules and rock the shoes of their choice. It's all down to the open-toed tights, which conveniently stop right before the toes and ensure they can't be seen. They're the answers to our prayers!
The risen-up shirt is a fashion mishap that is guaranteed to ruin any perfectly prepped outfit. While we may have started off the day all tucked in and proper, they tend to slip out as we walk, bunching up and causing a sloppy appearance. Royals, of course, are never allowed to look sloppy or untucked, so they love bodysuits.
Coming in as the ultimate answer to their problems, bodysuits fasten underneath to guarantee a lack of movement. Not only do they look good, but they ensure everything remains where it began. Meghan goes as far as to wear bodysuited blouses under a pantsuit for fashionable, chic perfection.
When they've tried the hem weights and the thicker materials, and the skirt still isn't staying down in the wind, the royal women rely on science. Taking cues from their physics high-school lessons, they utilize static powers to keep their clothing in place.
Etiquette expert Myka Meier spoke to The Sun about this phenomenon, revealing Meghan and Kate like to "wear bodysuits and clothes that actually increase static, so it's much hard[er] for something to fly up." With all these various benefits, bodysuits are the gifts that keep on giving.
Ever since Meghan Markle came onto the scene, we've been incredibly envious of her perfectly style low-hair buns. With a few hairs perfectly dangled forward, she makes it look effortless yet pristine. As we've recently discovered, though, there's more to the hairstyle than just looking good.
For Meghan (and now us, too), the low bun ensures she can transition from hair up to hair down with minimal fuss. Most importantly, the loose updo ensures no hair creases, guaranteeing it looks smooth and shiny later on. As noted by Byrdie UK, "a low bun is like a form of damage control."
Having been forced to wear heels for as long as they can remember, the royals have devised numerous hacks to get them through it. Yet another trick to ensure Kate can stay firmly within her shoes are leather insoles. These add a cushiony feel to the soles and help prevent her feet from slipping.
The Princess is a particular fan of the ones made by Alice Bow due to their extra cushiony feel. They also have double-sided sticky points on the back to ensure they are held tightly against the bottom of the shoe—the perfect solution for any stiletto beginners.
Bold and Bright
Some people aim to blend into a room, hardly noticeable from a distance. Others seek the opposite effect, wishing to stand out and be remembered. If the latter is what you're after, it's worth taking notes from Queen Elizabeth, who knew how to be the star of any scene.
Granted, she was the reigning monarch, which guaranteed her bold appearance, but still, she opted for bold colors to eliminate any doubt she had been seen. Her bright clothing meant she was easy to spot in any royal engagement photograph. Taking her cues, Kate's outfits also get brighter with time.