Princess Diana’s hairdresser reveals why she wore emerald and diamond necklace as headband

Princess Diana, with Prince Charles, wore a diamond choker necklace as a headband in Australia, in 1985 (Alamy)

Princess Diana’s hairdresser Richard Dalton revealed the intention behind one of the icon’s most memorable fashion moments.

The late Princess of Wales was, and still is, widely deemed the original model for the preppy, refined style that shaped the 1990s. She was fearless in her fashion pursuits, wearing vibrant wide-brimmed hats, exaggerated shoulder pads and extravagant two-tone gowns. And while her hairstyle stayed quite consistent – short and feathered – she played with dazzling accessories to jazz up the look.

Of her notable ensembles, Diana – who tragically passed away in 1997 at the age of 36 – wore a diamond choker necklace as a headband in Australia with then Prince Charles. The 1985 get-up had the royal in a satin one-shoulder cerulean dress by Elizabeth Emanuel with the emerald-and-diamond piece fastened around her forehead.

“I think she had sunburn on her neck so we said, ‘Let’s make a headband of it,” Richard Dalton, Diana’s famed hairstylist, remembered at the Styling Princess Diana panel on 21 May, celebrating People Magazine’s 50th anniversary.

“I asked Evelyn, her dresser, for six inches of knicker elastic, [the kind used by] grannies,” he continued.

Dalton recalled working with Diana for more than 10 years. They first met when she was 17 years old. Now, the creative is publishing an entire recap with a book entitled, It’s All About the Hair – My Decade with Diana, in partnership with Renae Plant, the founder of The Princess Diana Museum.

The stylist admitted his favorite hairdo of Diana’s was her 1988 look in Thailand. Her short dirty-blonde locks were swept back in a bouquet of pink, white, and purple flowers.

“My favorite [hairstyle] would be Thailand,” Dalton said at the Fotografiska New York event. “She wore a] purple and shocking pink dress and I said, ‘Why don’t we do orchids?’ I went into the hotel, stealing flowers for the princess. This was my favorite. She loved it.”

“We decided whatever charity she was representing, the hair would sometimes take away from what she was doing,” he continued, discussing their creative process.

“In] Saudi Arabia, she wanted it short. We would cut it every day about a quarter of an inch,” he said. “[After] eight weeks, nobody noticed!”

princess diana, fashion, hair, princess diana’s hairdresser reveals why she wore emerald and diamond necklace as headband
Princess Diana dances with Prince Charles while wearing a necklace as a headband (Alamy)

Speaking to Page Six in 2023, Diana’s royal cosmetic chemist, Sheree Ladove, exposed the secret to the beloved figure’s perfect hair. Even after helicopter rides, Diana’s hair somehow still looked perfect – thanks to Ladove, Dalton, and a special formula.

“When she would get off the helicopter, the blades would just spin and spin and her hair [would blow]. So her beautiful coiffed, cute little cut would go crazy,” Ladove told Page Six. “She didn’t want anything that would make her hair look glued down because she was so young and so beautiful. She didn’t want … a helmet-head kind of look.

“I was literally in [the lab] formulating myself, figuring out what’s the melting point of this resin, how do we get it so that it’s not so sticky and tacky? How do we get it so that it doesn’t harden? It’s just a whole creative recipe.”

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