Does Prince Louis Always Have to Wear Shorts Like His Big Brother, Prince George?

Over the years, royal fans have noticed that Prince William and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge’s eldest son, Prince George, is usually photographed wearing shorts no matter the weather. Recently, that’s been the case with their youngest son, Prince Louis, too as he’s been seen in public more.

This has some questioning if there is a rule Louis needs to follow that many previously thought only applied to the future king. Read on to find out the answer to that, plus why we never see one other key member of the royal family in pants.

Prince William, Kate Middleton, and their children
Prince William, Kate Middleton, and their children | Comic Relief/BBC Children in Need/Comic Relief via Getty Images

Why Prince George and Prince Louis are in shorts most of the time

The reason William and Kate dress their sons in shorts so much has to do with a long-standing tradition.

“It’s a very English thing to dress a young boy in shorts,” etiquette expert William Hanson told Harper’s Bazaar U.K. “Trousers are for older boys and men, whereas shorts on young boys is one of those silent class markers that we have in England. Although times are changing, a pair of trousers on a young boy is considered quite middle class–quite suburban. And no self-respecting aristo or royal would want to be considered suburban. Even the Duchess of Cambridge.”

Hanson elaborated on the tradition adding, “The usual custom is that a boy graduates to trousers around 8 years old. This is, historically, perhaps due to the practice of ‘breeching,’ which dates back to the sixteenth century. A newborn boy would be dressed in a gown for their first year or two (these gowns have survived as the modern Christening robe) and then he was ‘breeched’ and wore articles of clothing that more resembled shorts or trousers than dresses.”

Kate Middleton holding Prince Louis
Kate Middleton holding Prince Louis | Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

Did they go against tradition?

While the young princes’ parents have stuck to that most of the time, some eagle-eyed fans pointed out that a recent post on the Cambridges’ social media accounts showed the children in long pants.

On March 26, the Kensington Royal account posted a video of George, Charlotte, and Louis all wearing trousers as they clapped for healthcare workers.

Because the family has been isolating at home like millions of others around the world it appears that Will and Kate don’t always enforce the rules of the kiddos having to wear shorts.

Does Queen Elizabeth ever wear pants?

Another member of the royal family we almost never see in pants is George and Louis’ great-grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. In fact, the monarch has only been photographed in slacks eight times during her 60-plus year reign.

According to Hello!, her reasoning is due to a royal tradition as well in which women wear skirts and dresses rather than trousers while on duty.

The times the queen has actually worn trousers were for leisurely activities and while on vacation with her family.

Read more: When Do Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis Have To Start Bowing To the Queen