From the day she stepped into the public eye, Kate Middleton has been a trendsetter, changing the game in the world of hair, fashion and beauty.
And as she prepares to turn 40 this weekend, the Duchess of Cambridge is set to have another decade stunning onlookers with her easy natural, experts have revealed.
While the royal is now known for her radiant natural beauty, dewy skin, and perfect blow-dries, but it’s not always been this way
Her late 20s and early 30s saw her sport a more relaxed, and looser look – often with dark eyeliner and smokey eyes for day and night.
The look of course was popular in the early 2010s, where the Duchess paired dark-lined eye with rosy cheeks, matte foundation and a glossy lip.
Now, she’s ditched her matte foundation for a more dewy look, with her also opting for smokey bronze hues in her eyes to look ‘more on trend than ever’. alongside thicker, more natural brows and an altogether more radiant look.
The golden colours appear more subtle and natural on camera, according to top make-up artist Laura Kay, which is perhaps a result of Kate becoming more media-savvy after 10 years in the Firm.
Her hair too has become more poised, and perfected, with leading hair stylist Tom Smith telling FEMAIL: ‘In more recent months Kate has been seen sporting a much more modern and updated version of her signature blow-dry, which seems to suggest she’s keen to evolve her style as she travels through her 40’s.
‘During daytime appearances her hair is polished while looking young and modern while her evening and more formal events the level of attention to detail and polish is no less than (future) Queen like’.
Look better than ever! Kate is pictured left in 2008 at a roller disco, aged 26. Right: She is pictured in 2021 at the No Time To Die premiere. The royal is looking better than ever at 40, experts have revealed
The day it all began! Kate married William at Westminster Abbey in 2011, her make-up was
Kate’s early days in the royal family (left 2011 in Canada, right, 2012 at the Royal Albert Hall) saw the Duchess opt for a make-up look typical of the time. Thick black eyeliner with a natural glossy lip and matte foundation was the mainstay for many looks
During the day, Kate would opt for a more natural look but rarely veered away from lashings of black eyeline. She is pictured in 2012 at the National Portrait Gallery
August 2013 was the first time Kate debuted lighter ‘bronde’ locks she has since shown over summers before going dark again in winter. She is pictured in August 2013
Meanwhile, Laura Kay, Make Up Expert and Founder of Laura Kay London told FEMAIL how the royal has changed her look to become more natural and modern ahead of her milestone birthday.
‘Kate has transformed her make up look over the years and as she turns 40, she looks even more glamorous and radiant than she did in her 20s,’ she explained.
‘Kate was known for wearing heavy black eye liner which she would apply all around the inner of her lower eye lid.
‘This was trendy in the early noughties but when applying her own make up Kate still preferred this make up look well into her thirties,’ she added.
But even with the slightly-grungy look of her youth, she always seemed natural and kept her cheeks rosy and didn’t opt for too much bronzer pale lips as was popular at the time.
‘Her signature look was rosy cheeks and a sharp defined eye matched with a natural gloss lip,’ Laura explained.
‘Kate has always look glamorous, but you can see over the past few years she has had somewhat of a make up revolution and is looking more on trend than ever.
‘Whether day or evening Kate now prefers deep smokey brown and bronze hues, and her whole eye make up is blended for a softer yet more striking effect.
While pregnant for the first time (pictured in April 2013, expecting Prince George) Kate opted for rosy cheeks and dark smokey eyes
During the early 2010s (Kate is seen in April 2013) Kate’s eyebrows were much thinner than today – as was the trend at the time
During 2014 (left in May 2014 in Crieff, right in October at the Natural History Museum) the royal opted for wavy hair thick eyelines
In 2015, Kate was starting to debut a more sophisticated look with less eyeliner, rosy cheeks and a shorter hair cut
By 2016 (pictured in London at the Street Cat Named Bob premiere), Kate started to wear lighter eyeshadow and golden hues
‘This is very cleverly done because even though her make up may appear more dramatic/heavy when being applied, it appears more subtle and natural in the flesh and on camera’.
‘Her brows have seen the biggest transformation, they are full and bushy compared to her younger brow style when they were thinner and tightly pencilled.
‘In my opinion, Kate appears to have enhanced her brows with microblading as you can see fine ‘3D’ hair strokes across her whole brow.
‘The defined brows suit her face structure and bring out her best features.
‘She is also not afraid to try trends by embracing new techniques that compliment her appearance.
‘She now also mixes up lip colours and her complexion is more dewy than in her earlier years as a Royal when she opted for a more mat foundation look. She has recently become a fan of bronzer and a cream highlighter to contour her face perfectly.
‘Her make up looks more youthful now and she looks even younger than she did in her 20s. She is definitely talking to the experts and I think we will see lots of regal glamour from Kate as she embraces her 40s.’
In 2018, while pregnant with Prince Louis, Kate went for a grey-toned eyeshadow but was still sporting a matte look foundation
By 2018, pictured at the Victoria & Albert Museum, Kate started to sport a more dewy look and glossy lip as became trend
By 2019, pictured on Princess Charlotte’s first day of school, Kate began to go for a softer, more natural look with golden tones
In 2020, Kate still sported heavy eye make-up but kept her cheeks natural and her lips clear for show off dewy skin. Pictures at the Commonwealth Day Service
The Duchess showed off a lighter ‘bronde’ hairstyle after returning from lockdown in 2020 – with a bouncy blow dry and natural look
Showing off Britain’s best! Now, Kate’s ditched her matte foundation for a more dewy look, with her also opting for smokey bronze hues in her eyes to look ‘more on trend than ever’ alongside thicker, more natural brows and an altogether more radiant look
In one of her most glamorous looks ever, the Duchess wowed crowds at the No Time To Die Premiere in 2021
Meanwhile, Tom Smith a leading hair stylist added that Kate recent move towards looser waves gives her a freeness that she’s not seen before.
‘Clearly blessed with naturally thick and glossy hair Kate has got a great foundation to work with,’ he to FEMAIL.
‘Even in her 20’s where her hair is unlikely to be something she invested a lot in, we can see the signature gloss and bounce she is known for.
‘Her hair in her 20’s is very “undone” looking while still looking healthy and lustrous.
‘Ever a fan of a classic blow-dry the level of polish and gloss increases throughout the early years of her time as the Duchess while her ornate up do’s have got progressively more regal and intricate over time.
‘In more recent months Kate has been seen sporting a much more modern and updated version of her signature blow-dry, which seems to suggest she’s keen to evolve her style as she travels through her 40’s. During daytime appearances her hair is polished while looking young and modern while her evening and more formal events the level of attention to detail and polish is no less than (future) Queen like!
‘She looks more radiant than ever, but the looser waves give her a youthfulness and freeness that we didn’t see in her previous decade.
‘It is interesting to see over time Kate become more confident in subtly playing with the tone of her hair. Recently she has opted for an ‘expensive bronde’ colour which is very on trend for 2022, but also, she has on occasion gone for autumnal tones with rich hues shining through. It totally depends on her chosen look for the occasion.
Her looser waves also on occasion make her appear more natural and she is not afraid to sweep her hair to one side which during the early days as a Royal you didn’t see and she kept it safe and stuck to more classic looks.
‘Kate’s 40’s are her style revolution!’.