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11-year-old Meghan Markle Fought Against Sexist Advertising, and Won

Credit: Inside Edition


11-year-old Meghan Markle Fought Against Sexist Advertising, and Won


Meghan Markle was an outspoken opponent of sexist advertisements even before she got married to Prince Harry.


According to Inside Edition, when the future royal was just 11, she attracted national media attention by criticizing an Ivory dishwasher soap advert that said “women all over America are fighting greasy pots and pans.”


The dishes were conveniently followed by a woman’s hand, which, of course, was wearing a wedding ring!



According to a speech she gave for UN Women on International Women’s Day in 2015, Meghan Markle may have inspired Procter & Gamble to change the tagline to a commercial for dishwashing liquid.


“I remember feeling shocked and angry and also just feeling so hurt. It just wasn’t right and something needed to be done,” she said during her speech.


Markle told her father about the incident, and he urged her to speak up.


“He encouraged me to write letters, so I did, to the most powerful people I could think of,” she said, naming Hillary Clinton, Gloria Allred, journalist Linda Ellerbee, and Procter & Gamble as recipients of her letters.


Procter & Gamble changed the tagline from “Women all over America” to “People all over America” about a month later.

Markle couldn’t believe the advertisement suggested that cleaning was solely a female responsibility. In her first-ever TV show, in 1993, she says, “I don’t think it’s right for kids to grow up thinking that mom does everything.”

“If you see something that you don’t like or are offended by on television or another place, write letters and send them to the right place, and you can really make a difference, for not just yourself but for other people,” Markle said, with uncanny pre-teen eloquence.

Linda Ellerbee, host of Nick News, told Inside Edition, “It’s absolutely clear that this young woman was strong in her beliefs.” “She believed in women, she believed in her own power, and she wasn’t afraid to reach out and say I want my power, I want my rights.”

Markle went on to become a UN Women ambassador, and in 2015, she spoke about the incident at an International Women’s Day address.

She stated,

“My eleven year old self worked out that if I really wanted someone to hear me, well then I should write a letter to the First Lady. I also put pen to paper and I wrote a letter to my news source at the time, Linda Ellerbee, who hosted a kids news program, and then to powerhouse attorney Gloria Allred, because even at eleven I wanted to cover all my bases.”

“Finally I wrote to the soap manufacturer. And a few weeks went by and to my surprise I received letters of encouragement from Hillary Clinton, from Linda Ellerbee, and from Gloria Allred. It was amazing. The kids news show, they sent a camera crew to my home to cover the story, and it was roughly a month later when the soap manufacturer, Proctor & Gamble, changed the commercial for their ivory clear dish washing liquid. They changed it from ‘Women all over America are fighting greasy pots and pans’ to ‘People all over America’. It was at that moment that I realised the magnitude of my actions. At the age of eleven I had created my small level of impact by standing up for equality.”


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