Why Princess Charlotte May Get To Break The No-Tiara-Before-Marriage Royal Rule

Some royal rules tend to be more of a preference of the current ruling monarch than a set-in-stone official decree. Take, for example, the late Queen Elizabeth's protocol for nail polish colors, which should be neutral and never bright or bold. The recent trend of younger royals breaking away from this ideal suggests that it was likely only a guideline put forth at her majesty's request.

But wearing a tiara before marriage has long been a no-no. Modern royals have begun to bend the rule slightly, wearing their first tiara on their actual wedding day. Still, we have yet to see many British royal bachelorettes step out unabashedly sporting a diadem. In fact, there have only been two recent unmarried royal women to wear tiaras before their wedding day — Princess Anne and Princess Margaret. And soon, Princess Charlotte may join that list.

Charlotte has gotten to wear other staples of the royal wardrobe, like a hat worn for Queen Elizabeth II's funeral. She also matched her mother, Kate Middleton, with a glittering headpiece (not a tiara, the royal fashion watchers quickly pointed out) at King Charles's coronation. Although it may not be long before the young royal breaks from tradition — unlike Princess Kate, who didn't get to wear a tiara until her wedding day — by donning a sparkling diadem before she says, "I do."

It's all about title and lineage

The reason why Princess Anne and Princess Margaret got to wear a tiara before marriage, and why Charlotte might do the same, has to do with their position, title, and ties to the royal family. Charlotte is the sister to Prince George, England's future king, and daughter of heir apparent Prince William. Therefore, she has the chance to become a "working royal." The title is part of the reasons why her relatives, Anne and Margaret, could wear their tiaras early.

Princess Anne stunned the public in her first tiara as a teenager, and since then, has never looked back, frequently wearing them before and after her marriage to Mark Phillips. Princess Margaret actually purchased her own tiara, forgoing the usual borrowing from the family's vault, and wore it on several occasions before her nuptials. In most cases, the women wore their toppers to formal events which they attended as working royals, such as state banquets.

Another reason why Charlotte might get to show off a jeweled diadem early is that she was born into the royal family. Unlike her mother, Kate Middleton, or her aunt, Meghan Markle, who both married into royalty, Charlotte is of the bloodline. Obviously (we guess), different tiara rules might apply to commoners who become royalty through marriage; but the same rules also apply to those who are slightly removed from the heir's family. Take, for example, the late queen's granddaughters, Beatrice and Eugenie, who also waited to wear a diadem until their wedding days (neither are working royals).

However, Charlotte can't wear one whenever she pleases

Even though Charlotte might get to flaunt her crown before she weds, we probably won't see her wearing it while attending a luncheon or watching Wimbledon. Aside from status (professional and marital), other rules govern when a royal woman can wear a tiara.

Generally, they're only reserved for white-tie events or official banquets. Furthermore, they should be worn in the evening, generally not before 5 or 6 p.m. (except at weddings). Finally, most royal women aren't gifted a tiara until they're 18 as a sort of unwritten royal rule. However, they might not wear it until they are married.

Even if all these things apply, glimpses of Charlotte in her tiara could still be few and far between. That's because if Charlotte is just like her mom, Kate Middleton, the occasions she wears a diadem might be quite rare. The Duchess of Cambridge has only worn one over ten times since her 2011 wedding and rotated through only three different pieces. That's because whether or not a tiara is worn also comes down to personal preference, and it seems like Kate may prefer toppers or headpieces. Maybe her modern-thinking daughter will too.