When Kate stepped out this week with a new curtain winged fringe the world took note.
Gone was the side-parting usually favoured by the Princess of Wales, 41, instead we saw a new middle parting andFarrah Fawcett-style 70s fringe.
The style, known in some circles as the ‘butterfly fringe’ – is designed to skim the cheekbones and has proved popular with the likes of Wednesday actress Jenna Ortega and influencer Matilda Djerf.
One personal stylist has even suggested it could be a sign that Kate is keen to ‘change with the times’.
‘It signifies a royal that is young and modern and really wants to embrace a fresh look,’ personal stylist Lisa Talbotsaid.
Yet, for the most part, Kate’s hair hasn’t changed all that much since she first met Prince William, with the bouncy blowout being her preferred style.
However,Kate has had practice with fringes in the past (particularly when change is afoot) and seems to get them cut every few years.
Here, expert hairstylists take a look at how the mother-of-three has experimented with her hair over the years…
Side-Swept Fringe – 2005
Student Kate is pictured with a side-swept fringe at her graduation ceremony at St. Andrews University, Scotlandin June 2005
The softer hairstyle signified the beginning for Kate’s signature bouncy blow-dry to come with her long hair and side fringe
Back in June 2005, just after she first began dating William, Kate was pictured alongside the Prince at her graduationceremony at St. Andrews University.
Even before becoming a royal, she showcased her signature style – dark glossy, bouncy locks with a side-swept fringe.
The style frames the face, while also looking sophisticated when worn with a side parting as Kate did.
Celebrity hairstylist Andrew Barton said:’Kate was not yet involved with the royals at her graduation. She pulls off a relaxed casual blow-dry probably done by herself the day before.
‘The side parting with a bit of lift through fringe ensures the hair looks full of vitality.’
Bottleneck Bangs – 2006
Kate debuted a shorter cut with what has often been dubbed the ‘bottleneck bangs’ when attending the Bluebird shop opening party in Chelsea back in June 2006
Kate showed how the fuller-fringe worked perfectly for her youthful summer look when on an outing atthe polo later in the month
Before becoming a princess, Kate experimented with her hairstyles in the early 2000s, including her grown-up fuller side fringe fromJune 2006.
Showcasing the perfect look for the summer, Kate debuted a shorter cut with what has often been dubbed the ‘bottleneck bangs’ to help frame her face.
This style is laid-back and low-maintenance and is the go-to for those who want to soften the face.
Kate wore her hair in this style at the Bluebird opening in London and again with beachy waves for a day at the polo later in the month.
Expert stylist Andrew commented: ‘Here we see her experimenting with a fuller fringe which actually closes down her face shape and makes it look smaller.
‘This is why we havent seen her wear a full fringe since it makes her cheekbones look fuller. Again, we see Kate wearing a blow-dry with a big round brush she knows her hair works well with some volume and bounce rather than super straight.’
Long Side Fringe – 2010
In 2010, when Kate and Prince William announced their engagement, the soon-to-be bride kept her hair simple but still gorgeous with a long side fringe
Kate opted for her iconic bouncy blowout along with some longer side pieces and layers
In 2010, when Kate and Prince William stood side-by-side atSt James Palaceto announce their engagement, the soon-to-be bride kept her hair simple but still gorgeous.
Kate went for her tried and tested bouncy blowout along with some longer side pieces and layers.
Sam Carpenter, the global educator for EIDEAL, explained how Kate’s glossy side-parting and bouncy blow-dry from the iconic engagement shoot would soon becomeher signature style in the years that followed.
He added: ‘Though a more polished version, this iteration of a side fringe pays homage to her graduation photo, where she was publicly accepted as the then-Prince Williams girlfriend.’
Symmetrical Side Fringe – 2012
Emerging as a new fully-fledged member of the Royal Family, the then-Duchess of Cambridge opted for a change in her hairdo with a layered fringe in November 2012
Along with the new trim, Kate brightened up her hair with subtle highlights ahead of announcing theywere expecting their first child
Emerging as a new fully-fledged member of the Royal Family, the then-Duchess of Cambridge opted for a change in her hairdo with a layered fringe just weeks before announcing they were expecting their first child, Prince George.
Along with the new trim, Kate brightened up her hair with subtle highlights – giving an overall look that was chic and just different enough without being a huge change.
Hair expert Sam said:’By debuting a drastic new style Kate was able to distract the world’s attention ahead of a pregnancy announcement.’
‘Also, worth noting a fringe is a nice addition to a hairstyle and can make you feel a little armoured up if you are feeling a little anxious or shy! Remember Kate was about to announce to most hotly anticipated pregnancy in decades,’ he added.
The Mum Fringe – 2015
For her first royal engagement after the birth of Princess Charlotte in September 2015, Kate appeared with a almost a curtain-like fringe
Dubbed the ‘Mum Fringe’ her lookappeared a bit sleeker and straighter than she normally wears it
For her first royal engagement after the birth of Princess Charlotte in 2015, Kate yet again decided to switch things up with her hair – cutting almost a curtain-like fringe.
Commenting on Kate’s different look, Sam said:‘After the birth of Princess Charlotte, Kate debuted what she called her ‘mum fringe’.
‘Similar to the Bottleneck bangs she had in 2005/6, it seemed she was a little uncertain about the style and quickly grew it out.’
Here, her hair appeared a bit sleeker and straighter than she normally wears it, sporting theshorter detail at the front, which adds detail to what is essentially one-length hair.
Sweeping Fringe – 2020
Before news of the COVID-19 pandemic was yet to strike in March 2020, Kate stepped out for the latest leg of her Irish tour with a brand new shorter haircut
Tied up in a classic ponytail, her fringe followed the traditional style that works every time for Kate
Before news of the COVID-19 pandemic was yet to strike in 2020, Katestepped out for the latest leg of her Irish tour with a brand new shorter haircut.
Hair expert Sam said: ‘Kate seems to understand that it is very flattering to have some shorter lengths to frame your face. In 2020, she showcased a sweeping fringe, which skimmed her cheekbones and framed her face but was not too heavy.
‘This is extremely flattering to women as they get older as it accentuates and softens the angles of the face.’
Stylist Andrew Barton added: ‘Kate is quite experimental with her hair. We see her hair dressed quite formally for special events and engagements but even then it still has a casualness to it which is fitting for her age.’
The pair agreed that elegance was key, and when Kate follows a style that works for her she maintains a youthful grace.
Curtain Winged Fringe – 2023
Kate looking radiant and showing off her new look in Paris at the Stade de Marseille on Saturday. Experts said that this ‘is a look that Kate often returns to when she wants to embrace a change’ without pushing the boat out too much
As she made a low-key solo appearance at the Stade de Marseille to cheer on England against Argentina in the Rugby World Cup on Saturday, the Princess debuted her trademark thick brunette locks in a chic down-do.
Although she hadn’t made any drastic changes to her hairstyle, Princess Kate swapped the side parting she had favoured during royal engagements before her summer break for a centre part.
She also swapped straight-styled locks for perfect curls and sported a loose, 70s-style fringe with a part in the middle.
Global educator Sam said:’Synonymous with 70s beauty icon Farrah Fawcett, Kate has recently debuted a new curtain winged ‘Farrah fringe’, which is a wispier, softer take on bangs.
As Princess Kate arrived at HMP High Down in Surrey on Tuesday, she looked regal as ever with her hair in bouncy curls and a fringe
It was a new look for the Princess – and the change has got the royal seal of approval
‘This is a look that Kate often returns to when she wants to embrace a change but not resort to anything too drastic.’
He added: ‘The long layers mean it is incredibly versatile and it gives great shape to thick hair you can still tie your hair back or you can wear it down. This layered style is also great for adding dimension to hair colour.’
Frankie Moody, who is a Senior Stylist at Jo Hansford Salons, explained how Kate’s choice of a lighter shade is common for women of her age, who tend to brighten their hair as a means of disguising the odd white hair.
She also added: ‘Sometimes when people have long hair and it’s nice they don’t want to cut it shorter – so quite often they play around with shaping without committing to a proper haircut.
‘Here, you have little adaptations of the same thing to make you look different.’
Complimenting Kate’s new look, she added: ‘Because she’s got such a pretty face she looks nicer with hair off of her face and it being shorter.’