Why Can’t Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice Wear Tiaras?

Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie arrive to call on Minister David McAllister of Lower Saxony on January 18, 2013 in Hanover, Germany.
Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

We first saw Kate Middleton wear a tiara when she married Prince William in 2011. Since then, the duchess has stunned in a few different sparking headpieces including Queen Mary’s Lover’s Knot tiara, which was a favorite of Princess Diana’s. We also saw Meghan Markle in the Queen Mary Diamond Bandeau on her wedding day. However, there are two royal family members who have never put on such a regal accessory and they are Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice.

You may be wondering why the duchesses can wear tiaras but the princesses, who are directly related to the monarch, cannot. Well, the reason has to do with tradition and the major difference between the literal princesses and their cousins’ wives.

Unlike Middleton and Markle, Eugenie and Beatrice are unmarried and therefore have not worn them because they are reserved for their wedding day. In the past, there have been some exceptions about tiaras being reserved for married women and to be worn for the first time by royal brides when they walk down the aisle. For example, Queen Elizabeth II’s only daughter, Princess Anne, wore one when she was just 17 to the state opening of Parliament.

As London jeweler Geoffrey Munn explained there is no steadfast rule that unmarried women can’t wear tiaras, but it definitely doesn’t happen often purely to keep with the tradition.

“Any woman may wear one, but ancient tradition has it that they must be a bride or already married,” he said. “One of the mainstays of European royalty and aristocracy is to do what you have always done and formal dress, jewelry, and tiaras are just part of this.”

The days of not wearing a tiara will soon be over for Princess Eugenie though as she and her fiancé, Jack Brooksbank, are set to tie the knot next month. And royal watchers have been speculating about which tiara she will wear for that special day.

Jack Brooksbank and Princess Eugenie of York
Jack Brooksbank and Princess Eugenie of York | Jonathan Brady/WPA Pool/Getty Images

A safe bet would be that Eugenie will wear the same York tiara her mother, Sarah Ferguson, wore when she married Prince Andrew. Personal stylist and image consultant Anna Mewes is hoping that Eugenie will wear that one which was a gift to Ferguson from the queen.

“I think it would be a lovely touch if she opted for the same one her mother wore for her wedding to the Duke of York,” Anna Mewes said.

However, others who think Eugenie bears a striking resemblance to Queen Elizabeth II’s mom, the Queen Mother, believe that the princess will choose to wear a tiara her late great-grandmother loved. If the bride-to-be goes that route she will have her choice of several different ones.

There’s the Queen Mary Fringe tiara, which was given to the Queen Mother in 1936 and later worn by Queen Elizabeth II on her wedding day. There’s also the Lotus Flower tiara that was given to her in 1923 and was most recently worn by Kate Middleton or the Cartier Halo Scroll tiara the Duchess of Cambridge wore on her wedding day.

Princess Eugenie and Brooksbank will be married on Oct. 12, at George’s Chapel in Windsor. The same place where her cousin, Prince Harry, and Markle said their “I dos” last May.