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Princess Kate's rarely-seen curls: 5 times the royal rocked her natural hair

We wonder whether the Princess of Wales follows the curly girl method...

Georgia Brown
Senior Lifestyle & Fashion Writer
23 April 2024
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When a young Kate Middleton fell in love with her flatmate Prince William at St Andrews University, little did she know her hair was also gearing up for a royal transformation. 

The Princess of Wales' glossy, tumbling curls have long been the envy of royal fans. The royal's hair secrets have kept the public transfixed ever since her wedding day, with some experts even suggesting that hair extensions are the only answer behind her real-life Rapunzel locks. 

From elegant up-dos to choppy curls and sleek, glossy waves, rarely does Princess Kate leave the house without her signature blow-dry in check. 

HELLO! revisits the handful of times Princess Kate's rarely-seen natural waves have shown their true coils…

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge rows in a dragon boat across Dalvay lake on July 4, 2011 in Charlottetown, Canada. © Getty

The post-wedding curls, 2011

In 2011, shortly after their fairytale wedding, Prince William and Princess Kate ventured across the pond as part of their Royal Tour of Canada in their former roles as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. 

Sporty Kate couldn't help but get involved when it came to practising watersports in Charlottetown, especially when the opportunity arose to race her husband in a dragon boat race. 

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge rows in a dragon boat across Dalvay lake on July 4, 2011 in Charlottetown, Canada.© Getty

Rain, salt water and a brisk ocean breeze left the royal's glossy brunette locks coiled in tight, wispy curls - a rare insight into the Princess' pre-blowdry situation.  

The Duchess of Cambridge visits the Cultural Village in the Solomon Islands, during the nine-day royal tour of the Far East and South Pacific in honour of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee.

The island waves, 2013

One unearthed photograph taken during Prince William and Princess Kate’s post-wedding era shows that not even the future Queen can handle the effects of humidity on her hair.

Rewind to 17 September 2013, when the royal couple visited Tuvanipipu Island as part of their Diamond Jubilee tour of the Far East. 

Prince William and Princess Kate were visiting Tuvanipupu Island on their Diamond Jubilee tour of the Far East on September 17, 2012 in Honiara, Guadalcanal Island.

Faced with the elements of tropical island weather, the then-Duchess of Cambridge’s normally sleek and glossy mane had become voluminous and wavy, giving royal fans an extremely rare glimpse of Kate’s natural curls.

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attends the start of The Ring O'Fire Anglesey Coastal Ultra Marathon on August 30, 2013 in Holyhead, Wales.© Getty

Princess Kate's windswept hair, 2013

Shortly after the birth of her first son, Prince George, the Princess of Wales made her first postpartum public appearance at the Ring O'Fire Anglesey Coastal Ultra Marathon in north Wales. 

The royal's thick brunette tresses quickly formed ringlets when the Welsh wind and rain hit them. We think the Princess suits the wild child aesthetic. 

Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, hair detail, visits Hopkins with Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. Hopkins is a small village on the coast which is considered the cultural centre of the Garifuna community in Belize on March 20, 2022 in Hopkins, Belize. © Getty

The beachy hair waves, 2022

The humidity was no match for the Princess chocolate-hued mane when she travelled to Hopkins, a small village on the coast of Belize which is considered to be cultural centre of the Garifuna community.

Princess Kate visits Belize in March 2022© Chris Jackson,Getty Images

The heat caused the royal's normally sleek hair to form beautiful, dainty curls and kinks that added to her bold, beachy aesthetic.

Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge during her visit to the 1851 Trust and the Great Britain SailGP Team on July 31, 2022 in Plymouth, England. During the visit, the Duchess of Cambridge took part in activities educating young people about sustainability.© Getty

Princess Kate's post-sailing hair, 2022

The Princess of Wales showed off her athletic prowess when she joined Sir Ben Ainslie's Team GBR at the Sail GP in Plymouth. 

Salt water and wind soon whipped the royal's Hollywood curls into a tumbling, textured ponytail. Just look at the length!