There鈥檚 no denying that celebrities have an effect on fashion and retail sales: A photo of a megastar spotted in a particular brand can give that label an instant boost 鈥 even more so when said celebrity is of royal status. Exhibit A: Kate Middleton. The Duchess of Cambridge became an overnight influencer the moment she announced her engagement to Prince William, with industry experts dubbing her retail reverberations 鈥淭he Kate Effect.鈥 (Newsweek estimated in 2012 that the phenomenon was worth more than $1 billion annually to the UK fashion industry.) It seemed no one could match, let alone beat, her impact on sales. That is, until Meghan Markle came along.

Markle鈥檚 effect on retail was noted almost instantly. Brand Finance, a British consultancy that specializes in brand valuation, noted that she could contribute 150 million pounds ($209,057,850) annually to British fashion, just by unofficially endorsing brands (AKA wearing them out). She 鈥渨ill quickly match or even surpass the Duchess of Cambridge in her incredible influence on the fashion industry,鈥 the company鈥檚 chief executive told Business of Fashion.

Whether it鈥檚 her trendier, decidedly American style or her approachable 鈥渃ommoner鈥 status, or a combination of both, is nearly impossible to tell. As she prepares to say 鈥淚 do鈥 to Prince Harry, the former Suits actress is about to cement her royal status officially 鈥 and is poised to potentially pass Kate as the family鈥檚 most effective style star. We did a little research into some of their favorite brands to see just how these two women stack up when it comes to sales. (Photo via Chris Jackson 鈥 WPA Pool/Getty)


When Markle was snapped carrying the brand鈥檚 Tricolor Midi Tote at her first official engagement with Prince Harry, the handbag sold out across all international retailers 鈥 within 11 minutes. According to the brand, web traffic to Strathberry鈥檚 site increased by 5,000 percent and over 3,000 shoppers signed up for stock updates on Markle鈥檚 tote. Dayum. She was already hot on the heels of her famous future sister-in-law, who once wore a dress by Anita Dongre that, according to Forbes, created so much demand the designer鈥檚 factory temporarily was forced to shift production from all of its other styles exclusively to produce that one Middleton-approved dress. (Photo via Steve Parsons/PA Wire)

Sarah Flint

Markle has worn Sarah Flint 25 times since 2015, often repeating her favorite styles. The brand reports the Natalie flat that Markle wore with ripped Mother jeans to the 2017 Invictus games (one of her first public appearances as Harry鈥檚 girlfriend) has been particularly hard to keep in stock and is currently still sold out. The effect is reminiscent of the Duchess, who also has her loyalties when it comes to footwear, and is often seen in her favorite L.K.Bennett Sledge pumps. The brand tells us, 鈥淲e typically see traffic to the website double when the Duchess wears anything from L.K.Bennett.鈥 (Photo via Samir Hussein/WireImage)


Markle鈥檚 flats weren鈥檛 the only item to cause a retail commotion: She carried Everlane鈥檚 Day Market Tote to the 2017 Invictus Games as well, spurring a wait list for the handbag of around 20,000 people, as reported by the brand. According to Business of Fashion, when Everlane founder and chief executive, Michael Preysman, was asked to come up with an equivalent celebrity, he said: 鈥淎ngelina Jolie.鈥 Oh, OK. No big deal. (Photo via Chris Jackson/Getty Images for the Invictus Games Foundation)

Line the Label

For her engagement announcement with Prince Harry, Markle donned a white wrap coat by the Canadian brand Line the Label and caused a fashion frenzy. The coat sold out almost immediately and the label鈥檚 website crashed, according to Business of Fashion. This kind of mad rush to cop her look can be a blessing and a curse. When Middleton鈥檚 Issa engagement dress created a wild demand the niche designer couldn鈥檛 meet (it sold out of Harvey Nichols in less than 24 hours), it caused the designer to walk away from her business due to stress, as she recalled to Elle. (Photo via Eddie Mulholland-WPA Pool/Getty)

Are you more a Kate or a Meghan when it comes to fashion? Let us know @BritandCo!