Prince Harry Says He Asked the Queen for Permission to Break Protocol—and Prince William Wasn’t Happy About It

So many rules

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It’s no secret that the British royal family is required to follow a strict set of rules.  But did you know that Prince Harry had to ask Queen Elizabeth’s permission to have a beard at his wedding?

In a newly resurfaced excerpt from his memoir, Spare, the Duke of Sussex, 39, recalled the conversation he had with his late grandmother regarding his facial hair.

prince harry queen elizabeth beard wedding
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“After all the stress of asking Granny for permission to marry Meg, I thought I’d never have the courage to ask her for anything else,” Prince Harry wrote. “And yet I now dared to make another ask: Granny, please, may I, for my wedding, keep my beard? Not a small ask either.”

Prince Harry explained that facial hair is seen as unprofessional, especially when paired with an Army uniform. “A beard was thought by some to be a clear violation of protocol and long-standing norms, especially since I was getting married in my Army uniform,” he continued.

prince harry queen elizabeth beard wedding
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Queen Elizabeth handled the request surprisingly well and agreed to let him keep the beard for his wedding. The monarch even admitted that “her own husband liked to rock a bit of scruff now and then.” 

This didn’t sit well with Prince William, who was forced to shave his own beard while working with the Special Forces. Prince Harry added, “At one point, [William] actually ordered me, as the Heir speaking to the Spare, to shave.” 

Nice try, Prince William. 

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Senior Editor

Greta Heggeness is a California-based editor at PureWow and has been writing about entertainment since 2015. She covers everything from awards shows to exclusive celebrity...