Princess Eugenie's Stunning Transformation Is A Sight To See

The life of a royal is unlike any other, from the immense public spotlight to their fairytale-like lives in and around Buckingham Palace. Also, we can't forget to mention the lavish lifestyle that comes with being a part of the British monarchy — from tea times with the king or queen to the choice of whimsical hats that a royal family member wears on their day out. Every last detail of a royal's life is scrutinized, as the media has become obsessed with the influence they play in society. While that role is largely ceremonial, the royal family represents the values of the United Kingdom and helps maintain goodwill with foreign ambassadors and state leaders by hosting some of the country's largest annual events.

Princess Eugenie (full name Eugenie Victoria Helena) didn't have any say in the matter when she was born into the royal family in 1990 as the daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson. She has never been granted royal duties and is not considered a "working royal," however, due to her desire to have a career and life outside the walls of Buckingham Palace. While that could change due to the lack of young working royals in the family, Princess Eugenie has cultivated a life unlike that of her cousin Prince William, building an impressive career without the pressure of adhering to working as a royal. Princess Eugenie's stunning transformation is a sight to see, and we're breaking down all the details of her royal existence.

She had a privileged childhood

Growing up as a royal affords a childhood unlike any other. Princess Eugenie and her sister Princess Beatrice were granted immense privileges by being the daughters of Prince Andrew, Duke of York and Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York. As the youngest daughter, Princess Eugenie is the grandchild of the late Queen Elizabeth II and the 11th in line to the throne as of this writing.

Eugenie was the first royal baby to have a public christening. It was held in the famous St. Mary Magdalene Church, the same one that christened the late Princess Diana and many other members of the monarchy, including King George VI and King Olav V of Norway. As a child, she enjoyed trips with her family to ski resorts in Verbier and often accompanied her mother and father on royal trips abroad. While Prince Andrew and the Duchess of York divorced when she was just six years old, the two remained close friends and shared joint custody of their children.

She underwent scoliosis surgery at 12 years old

At 12 years old, Eugenie underwent serious spinal surgery that left her in a brace for months. The Princess of York was diagnosed with scoliosis the year prior, a condition that describes a sideways curvature of the spine, according to the Mayo Clinic. While there are different degrees of scoliosis, some more serious cases require surgery to help alleviate the spine and allow space for the lungs to function properly.

Eugenie's case required surgery and left her with a noticeable lengthy scar that ran down her back. She spoke about the operation with The Telegraph, revealing she was pulled out of school to recover and isolated from many of her peers. "Afterwards, I couldn't move for a while in hospital or when I came home. I had to wear a neck brace and be moved very gently in bed for a few months," she remembered. "That was very frustrating and I remember being angry about not being able to run and play."

Nowadays Princess Eugenie wears her scars like a badge of honor. She proudly displayed her surgery scar on her wedding day in 2018, wearing a gown featuring a low back that made a statement. "It made me realize that I can help others by showing it and that there didn't need to be a scared, embarrassed girl standing alone," she told The Telegraph. The Princess of York has used her platform to spread awareness of the condition, and she became the Royal Patron of the Scoliosis Association UK in 2021.

Princess Eugenie studied at some of the best schools in the U.K.

As befits a member of the royal family, Princess Eugenie has studied at some of the most critically acclaimed schools in the United Kingdom. She was sent to Winkfield Montessori school when she was just two years old and went on to study at Upton House School in Windsor until 1995, and later Coworth Park School for her elementary school years. She spent two years at St. George's School from 2001 to 2003, a preparatory school that has seen several royals pass through its doors, as well as visits by the late Queen Elizabeth II. 

Eugenie was eventually sent to the boarding school Marlborough College, which is a secondary school for children ages 13 to 18. She studied at the college between 2003 and 2008, taking a gap year before she started university. Eugenie decided to pursue studies in art history, English literature, and politics at Newcastle University beginning in 2009, graduating with a bachelor's degree in English literature and history of art.

Princess Eugenie is not a big fan of being a royal

Despite being born into one of the world's most influential families, Princess Eugenie isn't a big fan of her royal status — perhaps one reason she and her sister Beatrice are considered some of the most relatable royals. She tries to avoid being called by her official title and attempts to live a normal life despite her connections to the crown. "How do I play the princess thing? I don't really," she told The Telegraph. "I don't like talking about it much and find it annoying when people say things like, "Oh, you're the princess." One of my best friends jokingly says, "Hi, Princess," and I say, "Shut up." It is one of the things that bugs me most in the world."

Because she's not a working royal, Princess Eugenie is afforded certain advantages that her cousin William, Prince of Wales and his wife Catherine, Princess of Wales are not. Eugenie is not required to attend all royal events, and she is usually seen in and around Buckingham Palace only on grand occasions, like weddings or coronations. 

With King Charles and Kate Middleton's recent cancer diagnoses, however, there may be pressure on Eugenie and her sister Beatrice to step up and accept royal duties. But Eugenie enjoys her life without royal responsibilities. "Eugenie is very keen to have her own career, and that's something she is very passionate about — so yes, she probably is reluctant to take on royal duties," said Grant Harrold, Charles' former employee, to GBN.

She met her future husband on the ski slopes

There's nothing like finding love on the slopes of the Swiss Alps. Just ask Princess Eugenie, who ran into her future husband Jack Brooksbank while vacationing in Verbier, Switzerland. The two met when Eugenie was just 20 years old, four years younger than Brooksbank. 

The Princess of York told BBC's "The One Show" that it was "love at first sight," adding, "We have the same passions and drive for life." The two dated for years before the former manager of the Mayfair club Mahiki proposed to his bride-to-be in front of a volcano in Nicaragua. "The light was just a special light I had never seen. I actually said this is an incredible moment, and then he popped the question, which was really surprising even though we have been together seven years," she revealed.

One of the first people Princess Eugenie broke the news to at the time was her late grandmother Queen Elizabeth II. "Granny actually knew right at the beginning [of the engagement]. She was very happy, as was my grandfather," the Princess of York said. The couple designed the Princess's ring together, which features diamonds surrounding a padparadscha sapphire, a rare pink and orange tinted stone. "...What's amazing about it is that it changes color from every different angle that you look at it, which is what I think of Eugenie," Brooksbank admitted. "That she changes color and is just so amazing."

She and Jack Brooksbank had a long-distance relationship

After wrapping up her college education, Princess Eugenie moved across the pond to New York City for the first time in 2013. She snagged a job with Paddle8, working for the firm's online auction as a benefit auction manager. The move happened more than three years into her and Jack Brooksbank's relationship and meant the pair would be separated for the first time.

"We spend a lot of time on Skype," Brooksbank previously told the Daily Mail. "It's great. We are still very much together." The couple made their long-distance relationship work for two years while Eugenie worked at Paddle8 and enjoyed a change of scenery. "She enjoys walking to work every day," a source told Us Weekly at the time.

 The former nightclub manager didn't mind flying to see his girlfriend either, as the two enjoyed exploring the SoHo district shortly after the Princess of York took the position. She lived in the Big Apple for two years before flying back to London in July 2015.

Princess Eugenie has a successful career selling art

Without the burden of official royal duties, Princess Eugenie has had the liberty of building a career in whatever she chooses. After studying art for years and landing her first job in New York City, she returned home to London to continue working in the industry. In 2015, she started working with the Hauser & Wirth art gallery and became a director of the company in 2017.

"Part of my job is planning special projects, supporting the artists in the gallery, and managing events," she told Harper's Bazaar. "We work with many artists and estates around the world, including Mike Kelley, Philip Guston, and, most recently, Lygia Pape."

Since she's not a working royal, the princess doesn't earn a salary handed down by the Royal Family. However, she is automatically a trust fund baby, entitled to a share of a fortune set up by the late Queen Elizabeth II and her parents. Though she's not strapped for cash by any means, the princess embarked on her art career out of an enthusiasm for the industry. "I've loved art since I was very little. I knew I definitely wouldn't be a painter, but I knew this was the industry for me. I love being able to share my passion for art with people," she told Harper's Bazaar. 

Princess Eugenie became the director of the Anti-Slavery Collection

The Royal Family is famous for being involved in several charities — and Princess Eugenie is no different. She co-founded her charity, The Anti-Slavery Collective, alongside her longtime best friend Julia de Boinville in 2017. The nonprofit seeks to eliminate modern-day slavery by raising awareness and educating people on efforts to stop human trafficking. 

Eugenie and de Boinville got the idea to start their own organization after taking a trip together to India. The women met with members of the Women's Interlink Foundation, an organization that helps house survivors of modern slavery and teaches them how to fabric paint. In addition to their nonprofit, Eugenie and de Boinville also started their podcast "Floodlight," which invites anti-slavery activists and survivors to share their personal stories to spread awareness on the issue. 

The Princess of York represented The Anti-Slavery Collective when she attended the World Economic Forum in Davos-Klosters in Switzerland in 2024. She joined a panel alongside former UK prime minister Theresa May, also a previous guest on Eugenie and de Boinville's podcast. "Guns and drugs can be only trafficked once but human beings are trafficked again and again and again," the Princess of York said during the panel (via The Guardian). "For them, it happens every day and minute."

Princess Eugenie got married at Windsor Castle in an extravagant 2-day affair

There's nothing like a royal wedding and Princess Eugenie knows it firsthand. The fanfare, extravagant gowns, decadence, and over-the-top media circus that has surrounded the matrimonies of the monarchy have existed for centuries, and Eugenie had her time to shine in 2018. 

Eugenie and her husband Jack Brooksbank tied the knot at the famous St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, which has been the grounds for royal weddings for hundreds of years. Prince Edward's marriage ceremony was held at the same church in 1999 and then-Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles' wedding ceremony in 2005. The ceremony boasted about 800 esteemed guests, including her grandmother, the late Queen Elizabeth II. The nuptials were so big that they were packed into a two-day event, featuring a traditional ceremony followed by a grand party the following day. 

Princess Eugenie's gown featured long sleeves and a V-shaped low cut back, topped off with the emerald-encrusted Greville Emerald Kokoshnik Tiara she borrowed from her grandmother. She followed up the look with a separate gown for her reception, a blush silk long-sleeve gown designed by Zac Posen that accentuated her waistline. 

The day after, the newlyweds hosted a party at Windsor Park complete with several different types of food stalls and carnival rides. The Princess of York opted for a more casual look for the festivities, choosing to don a biker jacket embroidered with the words "Mrs. Brooksbank" on the back.

Princess Eugenie has moved quite a bit

Princess Eugenie has done a bit of moving around ever since she tied the knot with Jack Brooksbank in 2018. The couple was previously living in Kensington Palace's Ivy Cottage in London following their nuptials, but they moved two years later. Brooksbank and the Princess of York moved into Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's Frogmore Cottage in Windsor in 2020, not far from where Princess Eugenie's parents live. 

The decision came as the princess was expecting her first child. "Frogmore Cottage continues to be the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's residence in the U.K.," a source told People at the time, "and they are delighted to be able to open up their home to Princess Eugenie and Jack as they start their own family." The couple lived there until 2022 when Markle and Prince Harry returned to the United Kingdom for that year's Platinum Jubilee. While the Princess of York and Brooksbank have since moved back to Ivy Cottage, Express reported that the pair briefly moved into Frogmore Cottage again amidst Markle and Prince Harry's controversial departure from the United Kingdom and their royal duties in 2023.

She is the mother of two boys

Princess Eugenie shares two sons with her husband Jack Brooksbank. The couple welcomed their first child, August Philip Hawke, in 2021, giving him his middle name after the princess's grandfather, the late Prince Philip. The Princess of York welcomed her second child, Ernest George Ronnie, with Brooksbank in 2023. She took to Instagram to share the news of his birth. "He is named after his great great great Grandfather George, his Grandpa George, and my Grandpa Ronald," she wrote. "Augie is loving being a big brother already."

Eugenie admitted that giving birth changed her outlook on the world, making her even more of an activist than she already was. She hosted the Ocean Advocate Series on sea conservation in 2022 and is also committed to making eco-friendly decisions in her own life. Her nuptials in 2018, for example, were plastic-free. "Since August came into my life, it's positively impacted my desire to do more," she told Hello! Magazine. "Priorities change when you have children; you want to do everything you can for them — and for your grandchildren."