The Most Iconic Royals in Fashion History

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Throughout the years, numerous royals have significantly impacted the outlook of the fashion industry over the course of history. In recent times, the ‘Meghan Markle effect’ has emerged, whereby the outfit choices of one of the most rebellious royals sells out almost instantly. However, this phenomenon of royalty-inspired fashion has existed for quite some time.

As a result, we’re going to look at some of the royals that have influenced the designs of pre-existing and contemporary fashion pieces.


Alexander the Great

While it is widely believed that predominantly royal women have altered fashion trends, Alexander the Great has undoubtedly influenced the modern-day industry. After becoming the King of Macedonia and Persia, Alexander III created one of the largest empires of the ancient world in just over one decade and, during that time, it’s noted that clothing was immensely important to the aristocracy.

Alexander the Great used clothing changes as a means of non-verbal communication, which set him apart from those before him in positions of royalty. The at-the-time Macedonian King combined uniforms of all walks of society in an effort to establish a more peaceful community that was bound by a sense of togetherness. Furthermore, because of the former King’s historical significance, Alexander the Great-inspired empire and statue t-shirts are available to buy today, highlighting his long-term role as a royal fashion icon.


Born in 69 BC, Cleopatra continues to have an unquestionable impact on the contemporary fashion world. Amidst enjoying a dramatic reign as the Egyptian Queen, the former wife of Mark Antony revolutionized clothing styles and outfit designs. Much like Alexander the Great, Cleopatra’s wardrobe was a vital component in establishing her position within society, as she frequently combined both Greek and Egyptian elements into her outfits.

Regarding her modern-day influence, the peplum, which is a flared strip of fabric often attached to the waist of a female item of clothing, originated from the ancient Greek peplos style, and it’s now commonly available at most contemporary fashion retailers. Moreover, Cleopatra regularly alternated between high and low styled gowns, which have also been an influence on 21st-century designers.

Unlike other royals, Cleopatra’s influence doesn’t stop with the fashion industry, as it also stretches into the entertainment sector. The 1963 release of Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s Cleopatra, which starred Elizabeth Taylor, is arguably one of the most powerful depictions of the Egyptian Queen, with the film itself winning four Academy Awards. Moreover, in 2000, the BreakAway Games and Impression Games Cleopatra: Queen on the Nile expansion pack became available for the 1999 title, Pharaoh, demonstrating an impact on the traditional gaming sector. Additionally, many online casinos offer themed slots including the five-reel Gameplay Interactive Cleopatra game, which seeks to capture the short but intense reign of the former Queen of Egypt.

Long-Standing Royal Influences

Along with others, including the current Queen of England, Elizabeth II, who continually retain their style in an ever-changing design era, Alexander the Great, and Cleopatra are just a few of the iconic royals that have impacted the fashion world. As a result of the historical significance of those mentioned above, it’s unlikely that their long-standing influences on modern-day trends will fade in the coming years.


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The Most Iconic Royals in Fashion History