By Stacey Leasca
December 11, 2018
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Meghan Markle
Credit: Joe Maher/BFC/Getty Images

Meghan Markle is her own woman through and through. The self-proclaimed feminist doesn’t care if she’s a royal, she will always be herself — right down to her nail polish.

On Monday evening, the Duchess of Sussex made a surprise appearance at the British Fashion Awards to honor Givenchy artistic director Clare Waight Keller, who also happened to design her wedding dress, with the Womenswear Designer of the Year award. Meghan looked stunning in an asymmetrical black velvet gown by Givenchy, which she paired with gold bracelets and a sleek bun. She finished off her look with deep, dark, shiny black nails. And that may just be a break from royal protocol.

Meghan Markle dark nail polish
Credit: Joe Maher/BFC/Getty Images

As we've previously reported, the Queen of England prefers to keep it simple when it comes to nail polish. In fact, she’d prefer that everyone just wears Essie's iconic Ballet Slipper nail polish, an almost nude, baby pink hue, at all times. And that made Meghan’s nail polish decision on Monday all the more interesting.

But, according to royal correspondent Omid Scobie, Meghan didn’t actually break an official protocol. She merely bent the unspoken rules.

“There’s no actual protocol about dark nail polish. It’s simply about being appropriate,” Scobie told Harpers Bazaar. “We’d never see this at a royal engagement but tonight’s event is a celebration of fashion and there’s a lot more flexibility on what one can wear.”

Now that Meghan is setting the trend perhaps we’ll see Kate shake it up with her colors too. Want to get Meghan’s goth-inspired nail look for yourself? Here are three princess-worthy dark shades to try out during your next royal-inspired outing.

O.P.I. Black Onyx

O.P.I.’s nail lacquer is meant to last for up to seven days of wear. The heavily pigmented polish is super rich and comes with a high shine, just like Meghan’s.

To buy:, $11

Essie Licorice

If the Queen approves of anything, it’s Essie. The brand’s licorice color is deep and shiny, making it an excellent winter choice.

Meghan Markle and Essie Nail Polish
Credit: Tristan Fewings/BFC/Getty Images; Courtesy of Amazon

To buy:, $6

Revlon Nail Enamel, Knockout

For a matte look, try Revlon’s Knockout. The color goes on smoothly and lasts for up to a week of wear.

To buy:, $4