A new member of a royal family can often get a makeover.
But Spain’s Queen Letizia has gone through something of a transformation since marrying King Felipe VI in 2004.
As well as a hair and fashion overhaul, the journalist-turned-royal had a rhinoplasty, or ‘nose job’, in 2008 and looks somewhat different from her days as a newsreader on TV screens. Spaniards.
Now 50, Letitzia’s appearance has changed to the extent that her wax work on display at Madrid’s Museo de Cera (Wax Museum) has been altered twice since its creation in 2004.
The clothes are also different. Prior to her marriage to King Felipe, Letizia’s journalist wardrobe was filled with no-frills boxy two-piece suits, a staple, which have been replaced by a more colorful and feminine style.
Now Queen Letizia of Spain, 50, is a style icon, known for her impeccable dress sense and long dark locks (pictured in 2023)
Letizia’s hairstyle, dress sense and facial appearance have evolved since she married King Felipe VI in 2004
Before her marriage to King Felipe, Letizia’s journalist wardrobe was filled with no-frills two-piece suits (pictured in 2003)
Letizia’s first waxwork was unveiled in February 2004, just before her wedding to King Felipe VI (left); but a second was created after undergoing rhinoplasty in 2008 (right)
She was quickly spotted in tailored sheath dresses, sky-scratching pumps and eye-catching jewelry, even chic off duty in puffy blouses and a pair of jeans.
Letizia’s naturally light brown hair was given subtle blonde highlights and she wasn’t afraid to cut her hair into the trendy bob in 2015.
Now she’s sporting long, dark brown locks which she styled into a sleek blow-dry in a look that’s completely different from her debut as a royal.
In 2008, the royal underwent surgery on her nose, which the palace said was carried out due to a respiratory problem.
As a result, the Museo de Cera replaced the first waxwork figure of the royal which had been installed just before her marriage to the then Prince of Asturias to reflect her new likeness.
However, the wax work was again redesigned and unveiled in 2017 to again mark the Queen’s “physical changes”.
Gonzalo Presa, the museum’s communications director, said Television at the time, while public reaction had been largely positive, “social media opinion” had proved more critical.
He said: “This museum is made to remember the characters who have been and are part of the history of Spain.
Letizia’s look was due to undergo a total transformation after her marriage to King Felipe, pictured in her first official portrait in 2005
Letizia underwent nose surgery in 2008 which the palace say was carried out due to a respiratory problem
Letizia changed her hairstyle often and was not afraid to adopt a trendy bob in 2015
The journalist-turned-royal opted for brighter colors after marrying Felipe and chose a feminine guipure lace Felipe Varela dress for her birthday portrait in 2012 (right)
“There will be people who like it a lot, and there will be people who don’t like it, or don’t like it at all.”
Presa added: “The physical changes and the passage of time, but above all the physical changes that the monarch has gone through have forced us to redo his physical image.
“We think it’s the best of all, and it’s also in our opinion, the one that best reflects the majesty the character of Letizia is meant to have as Queen of Spain.”
Before meeting the heiress to the Spanish throne, Letizia Ortiz Rocasolano, whose father Jesús José Ortiz Álvarez and mother-in-law Ana Togores are both journalists, had a long career on television and in the newspapers.
Having also worked in Mexico, she was working for the popular television channel 24 Horas, where she presented the popular evening news bulletin Telediario 2, at the time she met King Felipe VI.
A third version of Queen Letizia’s wax job was revealed in 2017 to reflect further changes in her appearance, particularly darker hair.
Letizia was previously married to Alonso Guerrero Pérez, a writer, but the couple divorced after just a year.
In a statement in 2014, Mr Presa described the Queen as an “icon of beauty”, but said her figure was altered as “time catches up with everyone”.
Describing the latest version of his waxwork as an “improvement”, he said: “What we would like to do is reflect the style and beauty of Letizia.
“I prefer this version, aesthetically speaking, to the version ten years ago.”