Why Meghan Markle Isn’t Wearing Her Engagement Ring During Royal Tour of Africa

All eyes have been on Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during their royal tour of Africa and some eagle-eyed fans even spotted something interesting about Markle’s ring finger. The duchess has opted not to wear her flashy engagement ring during the trip, but why?

Why Meghan Markle Isn’t Wearing Her Engagement Ring on the Africa Royal Tour
Meghan Markle | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Markle’s fashion choices analyzed

Markle has chosen a variety of outfit changes during the couple’s tour of Africa, wearing a lovely black and white patterned wrap dress and recycling a blue dress in Cape Town on Monday (it’s the same dress she wore in Tonga in 2018).

On day two of the tour, Markle went more casual in black jeans, a white shirt, and a blue jean jacket, which is definitely a departure from the formality of royal wear. She also sported an olive green maxi dress with a cream-colored head scarf for their visit to a mosque.

She has definitely taken a more laid back approach with her fashion choices and that includes her jewelry — and perhaps explains the absence of her ring.

Why isn’t Markle wearing her engagement ring?

On the first day of their tour, the duchess’ ring finger was a little lighter, as she opted not to wear the three-carat engagement ring Prince Harry designed for her and instead wore her gold wedding band and the eternity ring her husband gave her for their first wedding anniversary.

On the second day, Markle swapped the eternity ring for a turquoise Jennifer Meyer ring as well as a more delicate chain and turquoise earrings.

The absence of the engagement ring doesn’t indicate any issues in her marriage but rather reportedly is an effort to be “low key,” a source told HELLO!. The couple also wore matching bracelets that spelled out the word ‘justice’ given to them by local children. 

During their first interview following their engagement, Prince Harry shared the significance of the ring, telling BBC: “The ring is obviously yellow gold because that’s [Meghan’s] favorite and the main stone itself I sourced from Botswana and the little diamonds either side are from my mother’s jewelry collection, to make sure that she’s with us on this crazy journey together.”

On the second day of the tour of Africa, Markle’s choice for a laid back outfit and jewelry served her well as the couple met young surfers from the group Waves For Change, which uses surfing as therapy for vulnerable children.

The Sussexes want their visit to be informal

The decision to swap out her engagement ring is likely in keeping with Prince Harry and Markle’s reported desire to make this trip less formal.

The couple had a low-key arrival and have been doing away with any royal formalities, such as bowing and curtsying.

Vanity Fair reporter Katie Nicholl shared that, according to a source, Prince Harry and Markle want to “meet as many South Africans as possible and make a difference where they can.”

The insider explained: “This isn’t a holiday and they don’t want it to look like one. Their Royal Highnesses want to do some serious work on the ground, particularly at a community level.”

The Sussexes have reportedly requested “minimal fuss, formality, and protocol” for their royal tour, preferring that people address them by their first names.