For those who are unfamiliar with the website Meghan’s Mirror, here is the Coles Notes: it provides almost instant IDs of Meghan’s outfits when she makes appearances; it has a complete archive of Meghan’s Instagram and The Tig posts; and it has #MirrorMegs, which are fashion options for people who want to emulate Meghan’s style on a budget.
The way that Meghan’s Mirror generates revenue is mostly via two things: affiliate links and its own Etsy shop.
If you have the money and want to buy $600 Valentino slides or a $4000 Brandon Maxwell coat (do you have some upcoming cemetery wreath-placing events in your calendar?), you can click on affiliate links on the Meghan’s Mirror website, which will take you to shops where you can buy those items. In exchange for sending customers to the site, Meghan’s Mirror gets a cut of the purchase price (likely somewhere between 4-10%). Meghan’s Mirror has partnered with affiliate/influencer company rewardStyle (also called rstyle). If you click one of the affiliate links on the Meghan’s Mirror website, you will see that for a split second, the website will redirect to rstyle.me, which then redirects to whatever shop is selling the item that Meghan wore.
If you have a smaller budget and are looking for a cute mug with some illustrations of Kate or Meghan’s outfits on it, or a copy of a piece of jewellery that Meghan wore (called “MirrorMegs”), Meghan’s Mirror has a full Etsy website to sell you those things. It’s called YourRoyalCloset and it is run by the same people who run Meghan’s Mirror (under the umbrella of Effervescence Media).
This YourRoyalCloset Etsy store also sells the HRH sweatshirt, which, for a while, was the go-to gift for royal watchers. It was worn and publicized by royal fashion follower Elizabeth Holmes (no, not the Theranos Elizabeth Holmes, the Town and Country writer Elizabeth Holmes). It’s still available for sale on Elizabeth Holmes’s website, via, you guessed it, an rstyle.me affiliate link to the Meghan’s Mirror Etsy page.
And here is Meghan’s Mirror giving away a copy of Elizabeth Holmes’s royal fashion book, HRH: So Many Thoughts on Royal Style. Feel the brand synergy!
From the RoyalHomeStyle.com website, you can click links to buy the strategically placed books, candles, pillows, and art from Meghan’s home in Montecito:
This is all well and good. A company is making money off compiling and selling items that have Meghan Markle’s implicit seal of approval. There’s nothing inherently wrong about it. Until.
Until you realize that Meghan’s Mirror sometimes IDs Meghan’s clothing and home items very fast. Like, as soon as they are pictured in public. And the blog is sometimes able to identify the exact item when only a tiny piece of it is shown. Is it just that the people running the site have an incredible eye and great research skills? Maybe it’s partly that. But it’s also been rumoured for a long time that Meghan and her PR team feed Meghan’s Mirror information about what she is wearing before pictures of her wearing it are released, so that Meghan’s Mirror can immediately and correctly identify her pieces and have affiliate links ready to go.
You might ask what the problem with this is. It’s a few things.
It shows undisclosed/partially disclosed collaboration with for-profit companies
Meghan’s Mirror co-founder Amanda Dishaw has confirmed that the Meghan’s Mirror team receives tip-offs from Meghan’s “camp” (this could be anyone from Meghan herself to her PR staff, stylists, or even friends). Dishaw said that this is common and that Meghan’s Mirror has never been secretive about getting style tip-offs. She also said that she would not comment further on anything related to how Meghan’s Mirror gets Meghan’s fashion IDs so quickly because she doesn’t want to be subjected to lawsuits. These screenshots are of a Twitter conversation between Dishaw and the entertainment gossip Twitter account Theresa Longo Fans. Shortly after these tweets were posted, they were deleted and Dishaw deactivated her Twitter account (it’s back now).
These comments from Dishaw were presumably made as a response to the Theresa Longo Fans Twitter account saying that it had proof that Meghan and her people were working with the website.
These comments from Dishaw are so jarring because she is admitting to Meghan and her “camp” giving information on clothing that she has worn, before and after her split from the British Royal Family, with no real reason for doing so other than to encourage people to buy it. It would be different if Meghan’s team only gave information on clothing or accessories that benefited a worthy cause or showed solidarity with one of her patronages. But this is not that. For someone to outright admit that a member of the British Royal Family was/is collaborating with a for-profit business is actually a startling breach of royal protocol. The extent of Meghan working with Meghan’s Mirror, especially before January 2020, should be looked into further (and I believe it is being looked into – Valentine Low of the Times has been researching it, presumably for a story).
And I highly, highly doubt that any other members of the British Royal Family are sending press releases or back-door information about their clothing choices to the umbrella organization that owns Meghan’s Mirror. As I said, it’s a clear breach of protocol, unless they were promoting something of which the profits would go to charity.
It leads to questions of whether Meghan is taking a cut of Meghan’s Mirror’s profits
Meghan and her team collaborating with Meghan’s Mirror is so odd because at the heart of it, it’s Meghan picking out items that sometimes retail for thousands of dollars, and giving the information to a fashion blog so that it can add an affiliate link to it and make money on it. You have to ask why someone would do that. Meghan wears too many different brands for it to be a one-on-one partnership with, say, Gucci or Oscar de la Renta. So the other option is that she might be getting a cut of the affiliate links being posted by sites like Meghan’s Mirror. I am not saying that this has been proven beyond a doubt. I am saying that it’s possible, and there are things that make me think it is likely, and that you will have to make your own mind up about it.
Theresa Longo Fans has since doubled down on these claims, saying that Meghan does receive a cut of the money made from Meghan’s Mirror.
This claim has not been proven, but it’s not out of the realm of possibility to think that a person who just moved to a mansion with 16 bathrooms and needs to pay a mortgage and millions in security each year would choose to capitalize on her fame and style choices. It’s also pretty believable that a person would choose to go about such a venture with a company that has confirmed it has a direct channel to her and her “camp”. There is no smoking gun here, but there are a lot of arrows pointing to it being likely.
It makes Meghan look less sincere
Take Harry and Meghan’s cemetery wreath laying visit. Almost immediately after the (professional) photographs of their visit were released to the public, Meghan’s Mirror had a post identifying Meghan’s Brandon Maxwell wool coat and Jennifer Chamandi “Lorenzo” pumps worn during the visit, complete with affiliate links. If Meghan or her people gave this information to Meghan’s Mirror before the photographs were released, why would she/they do that? The uncomfortable answer is that she wanted to get attention and/or possibly make money off of people buying the clothing that she wore to the cemetery, which was supposed to be a private visit to commemorate Remembrance Sunday in the UK. If Meghan or her team are concerned with distributing fashion information from an outing to a cemetery to remember the war dead, it doesn’t paint her as the most sincere (or private!) person. It actually makes it seem probably that they don’t really care about remembering the men and women who fought for their country. Which is a problem, when you’re trying to make a global brand and empire based on kindness and compassion.
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