Japan's Princess Mako has got engaged to a commoner.

Princess Mako and Kei Komuro

Princess Mako and Kei Komuro

The 25-year-old royal - who is the eldest daughter of Prince Akishino and his wife Princess Kiko - revealed on Sunday (03.09.17) that she is to marry Kei Komuro, who she met whilst studying at Tokyo's International Christian University, after getting her grandfather Emperor Akihito's blessing.

However, choosing to tie the knot with someone outside of the royal family means that Mako will have to give up her royal status - a Japanese imperial law which only applies to females.

In a statement, the brunette beauty said: "I was aware since my childhood that I'll leave a royal status once I marry.

"While I worked to help the emperor and fulfil duties as a royal family member as much as I can, I've been cherishing my own life."

Mako and Kei have been dating for five years and were long-distance while Mako studied in the UK.

During a press conference over the weekend, Mako said it was her fiancé's "bright smiles" that first attracted her to the 25-year-old legal assistant.

She said: "First I was attracted by his bright smiles like the sun."

The student said her lover is a "sincere, strong-minded, hard worker" who has a "big heart".

Kei is believed to have proposed some time ago, but the official announcement was called off after western Japan was flooded.

The wedding is expected to take place next year, but in-keeping with Japanese tradition several rituals will take place before the big day.

Mako also said that she is keen to create a loving home for her husband, but that they are not thinking about starting a family just yet.

She said: "Having a family goes beyond my imagination, but I hope to make one that is warm, comfortable and filled with smiles."