If the Tiara Fits

A tiara is considered the ultimate symbol of being a princess. Yet, surprisingly few princess characters wear them in their movies. While it may not seem very practical to wear a tiara in every day life, I try to come up with as many excuses as I can. Tiaras make us feel beautiful and important, just like a real princess. It's considered socially acceptable to wear a tiara on your birthday, at your wedding, to a fancy party, or at the Disney Parks. Like princesses, tiaras come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and styles. There are shimmering crystal and rhinestone tiaras, flower circlets, mermaid crowns, headbands and more. Let's take a look at these sparkly symbols of princesshood.

Rapunzel would win in a contest for best tiara hands down. Her tiara was a major plot point throughout the entire movie. The moment she put it on for the first time was incredibly magical even though she didn't even know it was meant for her. It has a stunning amount of detail for an animated movie. Light pours in through the three large translucent crystals in the middle, and the smaller red and blue jewels and flowers below it add a pop of color. Not only is it beautiful, but this accessory is also responsible for bringing Rapunzel and Eugene together and ultimately restoring her place as princess. It may well be the most important tiara in any princess movie. It also made a reappearance in the latest episode of the Tangled series in which two mischievous little girls tried to steal it yet again.

Another significant tiara was worn by Princess Aurora in Disney's 1959 Sleeping Beauty. Aurora was the first Disney Princess to have her own crown. What made it special is that it was created magically by the three good fairies, Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather. The three good fairies later became teachers at Royal Prep, where Sofia the First attends school. Sofia's tiara is also unique. While it has a pretty simple shape overall, the curved design in the middle forms the shape of a heart, representing her own big heart. Like Aurora, Tiana's bayou crown was also created by magic. It appeared along with her wedding dress and matches its style perfectly with its white lily-pad look and dewdrop pearls. Giselle from Enchanted, in true princess parody format, had her wedding tiara stolen by a hobo. Though her tiara was not particularly unique in design, it was quite funny when she ran after him yelling "I need that!" since no princess needs her tiara to prove that she's princess. Props go out to Don Bluth, though, for taking advantage of computer effects in the '90s to make the crowns in Anastasia so sparkly that they might blind someone.

The most stunning tiaras in real life would probably be the ones awarded as prizes at beauty pageants. However, these are quite large and heavy, making them impractical to wear for an extended amount of time. It's not too difficult to find smaller rhinestone or crystal tiaras at girls' accessory shops such as Claire's. I got one of my favorite lightweight rhinestone tiaras at a flea market, so you never know where one might pop up. Disney makes "official" princess tiaras, but I've never been a fan of them, myself. They look like they're made of very cheap plastic beads and usually have a gaudy picture of the princess they represent right in the middle. The ones you can find at Claire's or women's hair accessory kiosks for around the same price are much nicer. There are, however, some crystal shops at the Disney Parks that sell much nicer looking tiaras, but don't expect them to be cheap!

For more casual princess affairs, there are flower circlets that you can find at Renaissance Faires or make yourself. I love wearing flower circlets because they don't poke my skull like metal tiaras do, and they are elegant and dainty. Moana rocked the flower crown in her movie last year, and I wore one at my wedding. In Disney's 1951 Alice in Wonderland, Alice made a lovely daisy circlet for her cat, Dinah. There are tons of tutorials online about how to make them yourself. If you aren't in a creative mood, you can find some great ones at Claire's or on artisan sites such as Etsy. Another recent DIY trend is the mermaid crown, which is made of seashells instead of flowers. There are some stunning pieces that people have made of these online, but they look rather bulky. If you're brave enough to wear such a bold fashion piece to show off your inner mermaid princess, you can also find tons of mermaid crowns on Etsy. Unlike flower crowns, though, these can be rather pricey.

Wearing a tiara is a great way to feel like like a princess on your birthday or any other day that you want to feel special. These glittering symbols of royalty highlight the inner and outer beauty of any princess who wears them. Don't be deceived, though. Like Giselle, you don't need your tiara to know you're a princess. Remember Sara's message that every girl is a princess, whether she wears a crown or rags. It's fun to dress up sometimes, but the tiara is just the icing on the cake.


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