9 Beauty Rules No Royal Lady Would Ever Break
15 Unexpected Fashion Rules That the Royal Family Follows
Every time you see Queen Elizabeth or Kate Middleton step out, you might notice their nail color is always neutral. They either wear subtle pinks or clear polish when on official business because only natural-looking nails are allowed at royal events.To illustrate this point, please see the Duchess' natural nails while she's taking a swig of beer.
The Queen's been wearing Essie’s “Ballet Slippers” shade for 28 years.
Essie Nail Polish in "Ballet Slippers,"
Tiaras are worn only to the fanciest of royal events, and typically, they’re worn for the first time by brides. Kate Middleton borrowed Queen Elizabeth's Cartier Halo tiara for her wedding to Prince William in 2011, and she’s even worn Princess Diana’s tiara on several occasions.
This is a privilege reserved for married women only—single women and children never wear them. "It signals the crowning of love and the loss of innocence to marriage,” Geoffrey Munn, author of , said in an interview withForbes. "The family tiara was worn by the bride, and from that moment onwards it was the groom’s jewelry she was expected to wear. It was a subliminal message that she had moved from her own family to another.”
You may notice that the Queen is never without a handbag, and that’s because she uses it to send signals. For example, when she wants to leave dinner, simply setting her bag on top of the table lets her aides know that the party is ending shortly and that she wants to leave.
Also, when she’s in conversation and switches her purse to her other hand, it means that she would like to politely wrap it up. "It would be very worrying if you were talking to the Queen and saw the handbag move from one hand to the other," royal historian Hugo Vickers toldPeople.
Princess Diana’s handbag designer Anya Hindmarch famously called her clutches “cleavage bags.”
"We used to laugh when we designed what she called her 'cleavage bags,' little satin clutches which she would cover her cleavage with when she stepped out of cars,” Hindmarch said in an interview with theTelegraph. And in photos, every time Princess Diana got out of a car, her clutch was right there to shield her chest from prying photographers. So clever!
For basically every formal occasion, the Queen wears a hat that perfectly matches her bright outfits. Apparently it comes from a very old tradition that women should keep their hair covered. "Up until the 1950s, ladies were very seldom seen without a hat as it was not considered 'the thing' for ladies to show their hair in public,” Diana Mather from The English Manner etiquette consultancy told BBC. "But all that has changed, and hats are now reserved for more formal occasions.”
On the rare occasions when the Queen isn't sporting a hat, you might see her wearing a crown or a headscarf instead.
One of the more morbid rules is that aspare black outfit is always neededin case a member of the family dies. This way, when they arrive back in the U.K., they are dressed appropriately to fit the somber occasion.
Then-Princess Elizabeth was in Kenya when her father passed away in 1952. She didn't bring a black change of clothes with her and consequently had to wait inside the plane for one to be delivered before stepping out.
Other than the fact that George looks adorable in them, the reason he's always photographed in shorts is because dressing boys in shorts is a longstanding tradition among British royalty and aristocracy.
“Trousers are for older boys and men, whereas shorts on young boys is one of those silent class markers that we have in England," said British etiquette expert William Hanson in an interview withHarper's Bazaar UK. He said that they start wearing pants around 8 years old.
You may have seen this this photo of Kate Middleton playing volleyball in these cork wedges all over the Internet in 2013, but the Queen apparently isn't a fan of the style.
"She really doesn't like them, and it's well-known among the women in the family," a royal source toldVanity Fair. Kate has worn the style multiple times but only without the presence of the Queen.
Queen Elizabeth makes so many royal appearances, all of which usually require heels or dressy shoes. Since she's constantly on her feet, having someone to break in her shoes means she skips all the uncomfortable rubbing and blisters that come with wearing new shoes. In an interview withEvening Standard, designer Stuart Parvin said, “The shoes have to be immediately comfortable … she does get someone to wear them. The Queen can never say, ‘I’m uncomfortable, I can’t walk any more.' "
According to the publication, a staff member will wear a pair of beige cotton ankle socks while breaking in the Queen's shoes can only walk carpet during this period. Dream job, right?
Remember these photos of KMid's yellow Jenny Packham dress dangerously catching the breeze on a tarmac in 2011? Queen Elizabeth has a hack for preventing that.
Stewart Parvin, one of her couturiers, told theDaily Mailhe sews weights into the hem of the Queen's clothes, which prevents them from blowing up in the wind. "Surprisingly, it is nothing fancy," Parvin told the publication. "I use curtain weights, lead weights, from Peter Jones’s curtain department. We call them penny weights."
You may have noticed that Meghan Markle was not wearing pantyhose during her engagement photo call in November. *Gasp.* It's but one example of how Markle breaks certain royal protocols.
While not technically an official rule, it's definitely encouraged as the Queen, Kate Middleton, and the late Princess Diana all wore them. The Duchess' pantyhose is also super impressive because it's so sheer, you can barely tell she's wearing a pair at all.
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