Princess Diana Was a Style Icon

There are few people in history who have been able to command the same level of widespread adoration as the late Princess Diana. Her every move outside the walls of the palace was meticulously documented by photographers, and as such, snapshots of her iconic fashion sensibilities remain a source of inspiration to this day. From her laid-back vacation style to those cool off-duty outfits including jeans and boxy blazers, her influence can still be felt via the wardrobes of everyone from Hailey Bieber to Harry Styles. While her style was certainly talked about more, there’s also no disputing that Her (former) Royal Highness could turn out some major beauty looks.

It might take you a little longer to conjure up mental images of Diana’s most awe-inspiring beauty moments than it would think of her most enviable gown or chic outerwear looks, but trust and believe that her beauty instincts were just as strong. While most would categorize her beauty aesthetic as relatively tame, those of us with trained eyes recognize her signature blue-eyeliner phase and stunning hair transformations as anything but.

Don’t believe us? Keep scrolling for Princess Diana’s 10 best beauty looks of all time, and peep the modern-day products you can use to re-create the iconic looks yourself.

WHAT: Royal tour of Canada, 1983. WEAR: You might need to zoom way in to see it, but this subtle, shimmery eye shadow adds such a pretty pop of color to an otherwise subdued makeup look. The shade appears to be a variation of light blue, one of the eye makeup colors HRH was frequently photographed wearing in her early days as a royal. Colorful eye makeup looks seemed to fall out of her rotation as the years went by, and she really found her signature sartorial and beautiful looks, but our memories of them will live on forever.
WHAT: The English National Ballet Gala Performance in Budapest, 1992. WEAR: Red manicures were among the most popular ’90s nail trends, but not for British royals. The fact that Princess Di routinely wore this shade, despite the fact that it likely irked her famous fam, is one reason her beauty choices should never be categorized as basic.
WHAT: Royal tour of Hong Kong, 1989. WEAR: The princess had gorgeous hair and a collection of top-tier accessories for every occasion. From pretty hats to coordinate with every ensemble to jewel-encrusted tiaras fit for, well, royalty, her hair-accessory game was truly unmatched.
WHAT: Dinner with the king of Thailand in Bangkok, 1988. WEAR: Dedicated fans know that young Diana was a big fan of blue eyeliner along her waterline. She can be seen in photo after photo with shades from aqua to cyan to cerulean tightly lined along her lower lashes. Not only was this an unexpectedly fun and youthful trick to pull out of her back pocket, but it also became something of a signature look for years until the ’90s when she committed to more neutral eye makeup.
WHAT: Cannes Film Festival in France, 1987. WEAR: Diana mostly kept her hair cropped short, but a natural-looking wave and tons of volume were never in short supply. Even when tucked under a hat or tiara, her blonde locks always looked feathery and full of life. Flat hair? Never.
WHAT: American Red Cross fundraiser in Washington, 1997. WEAR: Lady Di was known to keep her makeup on the neutral side, and where lipstick was concerned, you could pretty much count on her to wear a pretty mauve or light-pink shade on any given day. On the rare occasion that she wore a bolder color, though, it always looked divine. This glossy coral look, for example, was so beautiful.
WHAT: Fundraiser at Christie’s in New York, 1997. WEAR: Diana first stepped into the spotlight in the ’80s with dark, wheat-blonde hair that never lacked in style or volume. But as the years went by, her color brightened to the point of near platinum thanks to some expertly placed highlights. What a color.
WHAT: Haunted premiere in London, 1995. WEAR: Many things changed about Princess Di’s beauty preferences over the years, but there’s one mainstay that never waned: She loved enhancing her eyes with plenty of mascara. Cameras never captured a lifting strip that suggested that she wore falsies, but nevertheless, her lashes always looked long, dense, and dark.
WHAT: United Cerebral Palsy Foundation’s Humanitarian of the Year Awards in New York, 1995. WEAR: On top of her expertly shellacked lashes, we could also count on Princess Diana to go the extra mile by defining her eyes with dark eyeliner. As she adopted a more neutral makeup aesthetic (this reportedly happened after she met makeup artist Mary Greenwell, who would become her go-to pro), the signature blue eyeliner she would often wear in her younger years gave way to rich black and brown colors smudged out around her top and bottom lashes to really make her blue eyes pop.
WHAT: Council of Fashion Designers of America Ball in New York, 1995. WEAR: While Diana mostly gave us feathered volume, she took a few opportunities to flex her high-fashion muscle with chic, slicked hair. She wore the look in a few editorial shoots, but it was truly a rare occasion for her to don the style in the wild, as shown above. We have to say, this sleek look really suited her.
Up next, 20 Gorgeous Haircuts That Will Make You Want to Chop All Your Hair Off

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