Here All The Times Meghan Markle Has Broken The Royal Rules

June 25, 2019


Everyone lives according to a set of social and governmental rules, and most of us try our best to conform to them (or at least hide from view when we want to be naughty). And since we’re not living under the flashbulb of a hundred cameras, this is a pretty easy feat. However, for people like Meghan Markle who live in the public eye, everything they do is scrutinized. Especially when they — gasp! — defy social order or break the rules, ahem, royal rules.

When you’re a member of the royal family, the rules are many — and they range from sort of weird to relatively obvious. For example, royal women should — meaning must — only wear one shade of fingernail polish (props to Essie’s Ballet Slippers!), just like they should never sit with their legs crossed, but assume “the duchess slant.” God forbid someone get a peek of thigh! (It’s considered immodest to sit any other way.) Oh, and tiaras must be at a 45 degree angle. PS: Never eat shellfish. Yes, the list goes on…

This is where Meghan Markle comes into play. She’s broken some of these royal rules quite a few times, which is probably a good thing because it’s helping to update the royal family’s  sometimes stiff and stuffy image. Regardless, Meghan did sacrifice a lot of herself: She went from working as an actor, using social media, speaking freely about politics, and running her own blog to…well…not doing any of that.

When she married Prince Harry, all of that had to come to an end.

But Meghan has found interesting and fun ways to add her unique spin to royal activities and behaviors — coming close to crossing the line of acceptability (or just straight-up breaking the royal rules).

She’s also the only person of color in the royal family, which is, in and of itself, a first for the royal family.

Whether she’s breaking these royal rules by choice or because she’s new to the wild world of English royalty — here are all the ways Meghan has challenged royal protocol.

And hey, look at who she’s married to: Prince Harry is known for a fair share of his own bad boy moves, like getting naked in Vegas, drinking champagne from a prosthetic leg, and jumping off balconies at 3 a.m.

We think they’re a perfect match — human enough to have fun, and royal enough to inspire and influence the world.

1. She upgraded her engagement ring for a fancier one–which is a huge no-no.

We all know that the royal family likes to keep it classy, like really classic classy. And this, unsurprisingly, includes jewelry. So when Meghan decided to upgrade her gold banded engagement ring to a more modern micro pavé design (which basically means they added a whole bunch of diamonds along the band), it didn’t exactly go over without a fuss. But if we know anything about Meghan, it’s that she isn’t afraid of causing a bit of a ruckus. So of course she also went ahead and added an eternity band to it, from the one-and-only Prince Harry for the anniversary, while she was at it.

2. She has no problem opening her own car doors — or closing them for that matter.

You would never, ever see the majority of every-day celebrities shutting their own car door. (Or opening one, for that matter — we’re looking at you, Lady Gaga.)

…And when it comes to the royal family, they must have someone do that for them, right?

Not so fast. Meghan Markle, the newest royal, has been caught on video happily closing her own car door.

According to etiquette expert William Hanson, “if you are a member of the royal family or a dignitary, you have a member of staff to open and close a car door for you.”

Guess what? Kate did it herself, too.

3. Aside from doing things that may be outside of royal protocol, Meghan also says things that most people wouldn’t expect a royal to say.

After all, she is an American and an actor, and so her background is definitely different from your typical royal.

She tends to speak out a lot more, most notably about feminist and political affairs, which are topics the royals generally do not speak out about.

After all, she was an activist at the age of 11 when she started a letter-writing campaign against Procter & Gamble. But in 2018, she also gave a speech about women’s suffrage at the 125th anniversary of women receiving the right to vote in New Zealand: “The achievements of the women of New Zealand who campaigned for their right to vote, and were the first in the world to achieve it, are universally admired.”

4. Beyond Meghan’s politics and ability to shut the car door on her own (we know, it’s shocking), she also dresses according to her own style.

Becoming a royal family member didn’t stop her from wearing off-the-shoulder dresses (which is apparently too sexy) orcasual jeans (which were a bit ripped and a far cry from typical royal style).

As you can see, some people are appalled by Meghan’s jeans or a rogue shoulder — even in 2019:

5. Meghan’s shoes — and feet! — have also caused quite the stir. During Meghan and Harry’s royal tour, Meghan wore Espadrille wedges…

…(I know, OH MY GOD), which is a huge no-no in terms of royal rules, as the queen has a deep hatred for wedges, apparently.

But if that wasn’t bad enough, Meghan popped them off her feet to walk on the beach (as one does). Apparently, there are to be no exposed feet if you’re a royal.

Alas, Meghan and Harry took off their shoes to join an ” anti-bad vibe circle” in the sand. And, if we’re honest, is something you probably need to take your shoes off for.

6. Her nail polish has strayed from royal protocol, too!

In fact, the queen has encouraged all royal family members to stick to very specific shades of polish. She’s only worn one shade since 1989.

The queen wears either clear or pale-pink polish — the same thing Kate tends to do.

Meghan, on the other hand — nail polish insurrectionist that she is — has been spotted with dark nail polish, including at the 2018 British Fashion Awards. Then again, so did Kate — on her feet.

Apparently, if it’s not a royal event, it’s okay to stray from the royal colors — just don’t the queen spot you!

It seems fashion etiquette is a big deal for the royal family. So it’s no surprise that Meghan has committed yet another fashion “faux pas.” Can you guess what it is?

7. Meghan wears black. All the time.

Yep, somehow this is a no-no as well. That’s because it’s generally thought of as a mourning color, saved for times when a member of the royal family has passed away.
It’s not like it has never been done before, but Meghan does wear it a lot — like, a lot, a lot.

Some people think she’s doing it to deflect attention, a way to put the spotlight on others.

But we also sort of think of black as simple, classy, and chic. And Meghan has always been fashionable, so why would black be off the books?

8. Moving on from clothing, Meghan also rebelled against the royal cake law, too.

Now, this is pretty hardcore, so get ready. Guys, we’re talking about her NOT GOING WITH FRUIT CAKE at her wedding. It’s a big deal, because every single royal before Meghan has had a fruit cake. But nope, not Meghan! And honestly, we get it.

Meghan is a rebel. Instead of going with a traditional fruit cake, she went with a gorgeous lemon elder-flower sponge cake.

(That’s because fruit cakes are, um, gross.)

9. Meghan has also broken tradition by not being Anglican.

(And by, you know, being an American divorcee.)

For the record — we don’t think this is a bad thing at all, since she’s free to believe whatever the heck she wants. (Apparently, she identifies as Protestant and attended Catholic school through her teens, according to The List.)

Throughout history it was forbidden for any member of the royal family to marry a Catholic.

That fortunately changed in a 2015 amendment, which now allows interfaith marriage. And yes, we think it’s insane that it took until 2015 to update that. Now, this speaks more to Prince Harry’s willingness to step outside the lines than Meghan’s. But whatever the case, we love to see marriages that honor love above all!

10. Meghan was also on the cover of Vogue.

She was not only once the cover star of Vogue, she — unlike some royals — dished on her relationship: “Nothing about me changed. I’m still the same person that I am, and I’ve never defined myself by my relationship.”

It’s shocking because royals just don’t do magazine covers.

11. Apparently, Meghan likes to show a little too much affection in public.

In royal family world, PDA is a hot topic, as in you don’t do it. Rarely do you see a real kiss, let alone two royals holding hands or canoodling in public, especially at royal events.

Meghan and Harry — who are both bad-to-the-royal-bone — also bend the royal rules around PDA.

They love to hold hands, kiss, and make a general show of their love. According to The List, royal etiquette expert Myka Meier says that there’s at least one unofficial but totally real rule that royal couples follow: No hand-holding.

And there’s a good reason for the royal rules around PDA:

“Technically, the couple are working representatives of the British Monarchy.”

But we still like to see a little love and humanity!

It’s like kissing on the job — you probably wouldn’t do it, would you? Clearly the lines of work, glamour, love, and celebrity are all blurred when you enter the royal family, though.

The duchess is truly the most elegant baddie out there. And we’re totally here for her ripped jeans, dark nail polish, feminist speeches, and sponge cake.

What do you love about Meghan Markle? To us, Meghan doesn’t seem to be breaking any royal rules in a negative or offensive way. Rather, she is truly updating a very, very, very old royal family image. And it could frankly use a dose of modernity, diversity, and creativity.