Princess Charlotte is celebrating her fifth birthday today and, for the royal fans in the world, that marks five years of general adorableness and four years of Charlotte stealing the damn show at every single royal family event. In honor of Charlotte kicking off her fifth year on earth, here's a look back at how her signature move—her royal wave—has evolved over the years.
In June 2016, Charlotte's wave made its debut on the balcony at Buckingham Palace during Trooping the Colour. At just one year old, Charlotte clearly hadn't mastered the move yet, but the foundation of the wave we've all come to know and love was definitely already there.
Later that year, Charlotte already looked more at ease waving goodbye to a group of her Canadian fans/subjects as the Cambridge family prepared to depart from an airport in Victoria during their royal tour of the country.
At her second Trooping the Colour balcony appearance, in 2017, Charlotte stood confidently next to her older brother, Prince George, and waved just as confidently to the crowd.
The next month, Charlotte and her mom, Kate Middleton perfected their royal waves together before departing from Hamburg airport on the last day of the family's official visit to Poland and Germany.
In 2018, Charlotte took her wave game to the next level. In April, Charlotte and George accompanied Prince William to the hospital to meet their then-newborn baby brother, Prince Louis. Charlotte made headlines that day when she turned back to photographers while George and Will marched forward, looking straight ahead. This was the proof we needed that Charlotte loves her fans just as much as we love her.
The next month, Charlotte and her wave stole the show again when she cheekily waved at photographers from a car during Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's royal wedding.
By October of 2018, Charlotte had truly come into her own—at least when it came to captivating a crowd with a single waving palm. She proved exactly that with this confident, crowd-pleasing moment during Princess Eugenie's royal wedding.
At the 2019 Trooping the Colour, Charlotte started to experiment with her wave, as if preparing to evolve to a whole new wave stage of her life. The highlight was this double-handed wave, which seems to scream "LOOK AT ME (and not at George)!"
While walking to school with her parents and older brother in 2019, Charlotte proved that she's always on—not just during big moments in front of a cheering crowd. The young royal gave cameras a wave—and stuck her tongue out at them for good measure.
This spring, Charlotte put her years of experience waving and applauding in public to good use when she stepped out with the rest of the Cambridge fam to cheer on essential workers during the coronavirus panemic.