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Meghan Markle Wore a ’00s-Inspired French Manicure for Her Latest Public Outing

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Meghan Markle has always been one to embrace minimalist glam, long before the term “quiet luxury” entered the lexicon as a descriptor for hair or nails. Of course, that's to be expected: “Stealth wealth” is kind of the royal aesthetic—at least for more causal outings. (The women in the royal family are known to really show up and out for a black-tie event, especially one where tiaras are expected.) Though there's no official handbook, it's believed that the late Queen Elizabeth II dictated that the family keep things natural and neutral, even their manicures.

Apparently the queen preferred delicate, neutral nail shades and found anything colorful, even traditionally classic shades like red, to be “vulgar.” Markle followed this rule at her wedding to Prince Harry and has primarily sported light pink, like Essie's Ballet Slippers, since and as recently as fall 2023.

Markle's latest manicure, however, deviates from the royal nail look ever so slightly. On January 23 the Duke and Duchess of Sussex made a surprise appearance at the premiere of Bob Marley: One Love, in Kingston, Jamaica. Markle sported an elegant low bun and minimalist makeup, both of which follow royal beauty traditions. Her manicure, however, wasn't pale pink or neutral, or filed into a squoval shape, as is expected. Instead she sported a classic square French manicure that looked like it came straight from the year 2004.

<h1 class="title">Meghan Markle Just Broke Royal Nail Protocol With This '00s-Inspired Manicure</h1><cite class="credit">Marcus Ingram/Getty Images</cite>

Meghan Markle Just Broke Royal Nail Protocol With This '00s-Inspired Manicure

Marcus Ingram/Getty Images

No, but actually: It is nearly the exact same style Rachel McAdams wore as Regina George in (the original) Mean Girls, which came out in 2004.

Mean Girls (2004)

Mean Girls

Mean Girls (2004)
CBS Photo Archive/Getty Images

While it's definitely a throwback, Markle is pretty much on trend. According to Michelle Nguyen, nail expert and founder and CEO of PLA Nails, sleek, quiet-luxury nails are here to stay, and one of the most popular ways to wear the trend is with French tips. “French manicures with a sheer base and bold, vivid tip are a look to watch out for, as it blends a classic design with a pop of color,” she says.

<h1 class="title">Meghan Markle Just Broke Royal Nail Protocol With This '00s-Inspired Manicure</h1><cite class="credit">Jason Koerner/Getty Images</cite>

Meghan Markle Just Broke Royal Nail Protocol With This '00s-Inspired Manicure

Jason Koerner/Getty Images

Meghan Markle, of course, took the classic route. Does this mean that the square, white-tipped French manicure is now back too? Unlike “fetch,” we totally think they're going to happen.

Danielle Sinay is the associate beauty editor at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @daniellesinay.


Originally Appeared on Glamour