Existing scholarship points to gender patterns in diplomacy. This study examines such gender patterns in new ways, expecting women to be less likely to be ambassadors in states with more economic clout and in conflict-affected states, but more likely to serve as ambassadors in more gender-equal states. Most importantly, we examine whether these gender differences diminish over time. New data on ambassador appointments for Denmark, Sweden, the UK and the US spanning the period 1970–2015 reveal that whereas there are no gender differences with respect to postings to gender-equal states or states with domestic conflict, women are indeed less likely to be ambassadors in economically significant states and in states in inter-state conflict. Crucially, these patterns are not diminishing over time. This study opens up for future investigation into underlying mechanisms that explain the persistence of some gender patterns and the absence of others.