Nothing connotes prestige and power quite like a hat. Fashion statements aside, the accessory's been a universal indicator of rank and status since at least the Middle Ages, when female nobles wore cone-shaped headdresses accompanied by veils; today, hats are crucial part of the dress code at any sporting event involving horses (because if there's one thing fancier than hats, it's horses). And if you're a member of the royal family, of course, you're expected to wear a hat pretty much everywhere, even while sleeping or showering. (Just kidding. I think.)
And while Kate Middleton may be the celebrity royal most associated with millinery these days, she's closely followed by human rights lawyer Amal Clooney, who — thanks to her marriage to basically-royal Hollywood hunk George Clooney — is probably the closest thing we Americans have to a living, breathing princess of our own.
But when it comes to style, whose hat collection comes out on top (pun intended)? We had the two go head to head (sorry, last one) to find out.
Round One: Berets
Back in March 2007, Kate hit up the Cheltenham Festival in this structured take on the beret by Philip Treacy. It looks so fuzzy! Don’t you just want to reach out and touch it?! Amal, meanwhile, was spotted leaving NYC’s Carlyle Hotel in March 2015 in a black beanie-style beret identical to the one you
probably definitely owned in the mid-late aughts. Unlike your version, however, Amal’s was by Dolce & Gabbana.
WINNER: Amal, because who buys their beanies at Dolce & Gabbana?! Such a power move.
Round Two: Newsboy Caps
Fact: It’s hard to make a newsboy cap look cute, unless you’re Harry Styles or a teenage Christian Bale in Newsies. Nevertheless, both Kate and Amal have taken the much-maligned style for a spin in recent years; Kate chose a knit version for a day of building fires and braving the snow at the Great Tower Scout Camp in March 2013, while Amal donned a plaid cap at LAX in May 2015.
WINNER: Kate, solely because it looks like she’s thisclose to bursting into a verse from "Seize the Day."
Round Three: Broad-Brimmed
Nothing says "I’m a fancy rich person who deserves first dibs at a lifeboat, should this ship sink" like a wide-brimmed hat, a fact both Kate and Amal know well. Kate wore this pretty pink one by Jane Corbett for 2013’s Trooping the Colour Ceremony, part of the Queen’s birthday festivities. Meanwhile, during her Italian wedding weekend back in 2014, Amal teamed her white Stella McCartney suit with a matching floppy hat.
WINNER: Amal, because I’m still dreaming about this outfit two years later.
Round Four: Wildcard!
Finally, no hat wardrobe’s complete without at least one truly statement-making, special-occasion number that doesn’t really fit in with the others. For Kate, that was this cowboy hat (!!!) she wore while watching the Calgary Stampede back in July 2011. And just this past weekend, Amal headed to Vatican City to meet Pope Francis in a black lace Atelier Versace dress accessorized with a matching turban. Yes, turban!
WINNER: Cowgirl Kate, because that hat is the anti-fascinator and you've got to give her props for stepping (er, line dancing?) outside her comfort zone.