Ainhoa BarcelonaThese are all the things Meghan Markle will have to do now that she's a member of the Queen's family
Now that Meghan Markle has joined the royal family and taken on her role as the Duchess of Sussex, the former actress will have to play by certain rules. Before her engagement to Prince Harry, 36-year-old Meghan started preparing for life as a royal. She shut down her lifestyle blog The Tig and her social media accounts, which had millions of followers; she also gave up her celebrity endorsements. And as soon as her plans to marry Harry were announced last November, Meghan quit her acting career.
As a member of the royal family, the former TV star will undertake duties in support of the Queen, both in the UK and overseas. She will devote her time to a number of charities and organisations and champion issues close to her heart as a fourth patron of Prince William, Prince Harry and Duchess Kate's Royal Foundation.
Let's take a look at some of the rules Meghan will have to follow as a full-time royal…
Keep PDA to a minimum
Meghan has previously said that as "an American" she's used to hugging and embracing people. She and Harry are known for their tactile appearances, which is quite unusual for members of the royal family.
When was the last time you saw the Queen and Prince Philip kiss in public, or Prince William and Kate hold hands? Some royal watchers might assume that etiquette or royal protocol prevents couples from indulging in PDA. But that's not the case. Rather, the royals choose to remain professional when they are out and about because they are working representatives of the British monarchy.
In the case of Prince William and Kate, HELLO! magazine's royal correspondent Emily Nash has previously said: "The Duke and Duchess are almost always seen in photographs taken during official engagements so they are at 'work' and it would be unprofessional to hold hands. They also need to shake hands with a huge number of people as they meet then, so aside from being on duty, it wouldn't be very practical! We know they are very affectionate but you wouldn't expect them to put that on show while in more formal situations."
Curtseying to the Queen
As a sign of respect, Meghan will have to curtsy every time she greets the Queen. Male royals are required to bow. The gestures don't need to be long or exaggerated – a subtle bow or curtsey will do.
As a member of the royal family, Meghan can expect to have 24-hour security. She will have at least one personal protection officer assigned to her, who will be with her at all times when she's out in public.
You can probably count on one hand how many times a royal has willingly stopped to pose for a selfie with a fan. Generally speaking, royals politely decline photographs as they are often focused on an engagement when out in public, and in their working capacity. The times when you will see them in a selfie is when they've accidentally photobombed one.
Meghan, who used to have millions of followers on Instagram and regularly interacted with her social media followers, will have to get used to the no-selfie rule.
Last year, Harry admitted that he "hates selfies". During a visit to the Australian War Memorial in Canberra, he turned down the request of a young fan, explaining: "No, I hate selfies. Seriously, you need to get out of it (the habit), I know you're young, selfies are bad. Just take a normal photograph!"
In a similar vein, Meghan will have to resist signing her autograph for fans. The former actress, who played a major role on Suits, will probably only sign her name in a guest book during an official engagement, or on special notes, such as messages attached to wreaths.
A long-standing rule remains in place for all royals, because of the risk of the signature being forged. Prince Charles has previously been heard turning down a fan, politely saying: "Sorry, they don't allow me to do that."
Meghan has always had great style, which she showcased on her wedding day in not one but two gorgeous gowns. The Duchess will have to stick to the unwritten rule that royals must dress conservatively.
We can expect to see her in elegant outfits when she's on official duty and wearing designers that are royal-approved, such as Catherine Walker – no short hemlines or too much skin on show!
Pack an all-black outfit when going abroad
Harry and Meghan are expected to go on their first royal tour as a married couple later this year, and one item she'll have to pack is a black outfit. This is because in the unfortunate event that someone passes away when they're abroad, such as a family member, they must wear black when mourning as a mark of respect.
Throughout history, the rule has been honoured by various members of the royal family. Back in 1992 when Princess Diana's father, Lord Spencer, died, the Princess was away in the Alps skiing with Prince Charles. On their way back, the couple followed suit and dressed in all-black attire.
No political views
This may be a difficult one for Meghan, who is a proud feminist and activist. But as member of the royal family, she has to remain politically neutral, at least in the public eye. This is because the Queen, as Head of State, is expected to "remain strictly neutral with respect to political matters, unable to vote or stand for election." Her family follow suit.
And it goes without saying, royals are not allowed to hold a political office, to safeguard against any monarch using their influence to sway political opinion or laws.
Christmas with the royals runs like clockwork and is steeped in tradition. Meghan will be expected to spend her first Christmas as a Duchess with the Queen; she was fortunate to be invited to Sandringham last year as Harry's fiancée, which was not the norm. The new royal will attend everything from the pre-Christmas lunch at Buckingham Palace to the Christmas Day church service and lunch at Sandringham.
How to sit like a royal
Even the way she sits will be scrutinised. Although not technically a rule, it's generally frowned upon for female royals to sit with her legs crossed at the knee. Legs and knees must be kept together, which means crossing at the ankle is fine.
Meghan is likely to adopt 'the Duchess slant', named after her sister-in-law Kate, whose go-to position is to sit with her knees and ankles tightly together, and her legs slightly slanted to one side. They make the legs appear longer and are a more modest position. Princess Diana was known for sitting in the same exact way when out on engagements.
How to hold a teacup
Only on occasion will you see members of the royal family sipping on tea in public, even though they do love their tea time. The correct etiquette is to hold the top of your cup handle with your thumb and index finger and only sip from the same spot, to avoid multiple lipstick stains. And lastly, remember to keep your pinky in.