close
Fashion style

Royal Ascot’s strict dress code! Kate Middleton, Princess Eugenie, Sophie Wessex and more






Sophie Hamilton




Royal Ascot 2022 is finally upon us and that means two things: gorgeous dresses and fancy hats. The racing event runs from Tuesday June 14 to Saturday June 18 this year at the prestigious Berkshire Racecourse, with the British public dressing in their finery to sip champagne and bet on the horses.

READ: The 8 best photos of glamorous Kate Middleton at Royal Ascot

Ascot is known for its strict dress code – no above-the-knee outfits, strapless dresses are a big no-no, and hats or fascinators are a must. No one does Ascot style better than the Royal family, however, who are used to adhering to a similar fashion on a daily basis. The Duchess of Cambridge and Sophie Wessex are known for looking flawless at Royal Ascot, and have certainly never gone wrong with their outfits.

Loading player…

WATCH: The Royal Family at Ascot – all the best moments!

Due to her ongoing mobility issues, it is not known if the Queen will be attending Royal Ascot this year, but if the 96-year-old monarch makes an appearance, royal fans will definitely be able to spot her in the crowd due to her love of brightly colored dresses and hats.

MORE: 24 beautiful Ascot-appropriate dresses for a day at the races

Read on to find out the strict fashion rules royal ladies follow and get some serious style inspiration if you attend the races yourself…

The Queen always wears bright colors at Ascot

Opt for unusual fabrics

Duchess Kate is the epitome of elegance at Royal Ascot. In 2017, she wowed in a white lace dress with matching fascinator, pretty earrings and a taupe clutch and heels. We loved the modern take on a Victorian look. Kate wore a similar lace dress the year before that fell just below the knee. The cream dress was Dolce & Gabbana and costs £2,415.

READ MORE: 12 of the Royal Family’s memorable moments from Royal Ascot

Kate Middleton is always impeccably dressed at Royal Ascot

SHOP: The best coat dresses inspired by Kate Middleton: From John Lewis to LK Bennett

Mix and match pastels

Zara Tindal always looks stunning at Ascot. In 2017, the royal chose a beautiful pale yellow dress with ruffles and teamed it with a light pink hat and a gray bag. The hues worked perfectly together to give a cool summer feel.

Zara Tindall opted for pastel shades in 2017

Choose subtle prints

There is a fine line between outfits that are too busy and too simple, but here Sophie Wessex and Autumn Phillips shown how to wear patterned dresses at races. Sophie’s striped dress with pale gray fascinator is so elegant while the delicate autumn floral pattern on her dress gives a pop of color but not too much, allowing her to pair the outfit with an olive green jacket and hat.

The Countess of Wessex and Autumn Phillips rocked subtle prints

Choose a flattering fit

You can’t stop me from loving Princess Eugeniethe Red dress. The shape flatters her curves and draws her waist. The royal coordinated her headgear with a touch of red flowers resting on the black hat.

Princess Eugenie looked stunning in red

Wear a wow factor hat

Ascot is really all about the hat and Princess Beatrice presented a fine example with this tangerine nib style. The royal cleverly kept it simple with a pale, plain coat dress, accessorized with a fun bright orange clutch.

Princess Beatrice turned heads with her hat

Stay classic

The Queen always chooses a classic design for her Ascot appearances, from bright hues to elegant pastels. Her Majesty loves team coat dresses with hats of the same color. Be royal and coordinate your outfit like our very own monarch.

The queen keeps things classic

Go for a modest length

Dresses and skirts should be modest in length, which Royal Ascot defines as falling just above the knee or above. The Duchess of Cornwall secured that spot in 2018 in an elegant pastel number that didn’t show too much leg.

The Duchess of Cornwall’s dress was the perfect length

MORE: Royal Ascot Afternoon Tea Recipes: Fancy Sandwiches, Buttermilk Scones and a Classic Victoria Sponge

Make sure you never miss a ROYAL story! Sign up for our newsletter to get all our celebrity, royalty and lifestyle news straight to your inbox.

Hazel J. Edmonds

The author Hazel J. Edmonds