As her star-studded New York baby shower in 2019 proved, the Duchess of Sussex's friendship group features Amal Clooney, Gayle King and her longtime tennis pro pal Serena Williams.
They're a loyal bunch, too. In 2019, a group of Meghan's friends spoke anonymously to People magazine, defending her from the onslaught of public and media criticism since her marriage. And when she and Harry announced their decision to step down as senior members of the Royal Family in 2020, Meghan's friends showed their support on social media and in person.
Here's a breakdown of the Duchess of Sussex's clique.
The college friend
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TV producer, actress and What Pretty Girls Are Made Of author Lindsay Roth has been Meghan’s close friend since they met in a literature class at Northwestern University. Meghan was even the maid of honor at her wedding.
The Pilates instructor
Pilates Platinum founder Heather Dorak has been friends with Meghan since just before opening her first studio in Los Angeles in 2006. Dorak has been beside Meghan for all of her career milestones, from landing Suits to speaking at the UN - and even lending her expertise to the Duchess' former lifestyle blog The Tig.
Dorak and her husband attended Meghan and Harry's wedding in 2018, and the friends welcomed sons just months apart. Dorak was also spotted being picked up from the Victoria International Airport on Vancouver Island by Meghan herself, just days after Meghan and Harry announced their royal exit.
The beauty guru
The make-up artist is also a favorite with Elisabeth Moss, Gemma Chan, Michelle Yeoh and Nina Dobrev. Other than being the man behind Meghan Markle’s natural wedding make-up look (which has become one of the most requested celebrity looks of all time), Martin was also a regular beauty columnist on The Tig.
Since she tied the knot with Prince Harry, they’ve enjoyed a discreet afternoon tea together and he’s also believed to have been attendance at her bridal shower.
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Martin, who is also a Dior brand ambassador and creative consultant for Honest Beauty, revealed on Instagram stories that he had visited Windsor. Some believe this means that Martin was Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s first official guest at Frogmore Cottage , especially since he shared a snap of the Windsor Royal Shopping Center, which is close to their home.
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Before Priyanka was Priyanka Chopra Jonas, both women were rising actresses - they went to Hamilton together in 2016, which Meghan documented on her now-deleted Instagram.
Priyanka also attended Meghan's wedding, although the Duchess didn't make it to her equally lavish nuptials - possibly due to security concerns and her pregnancy.
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The actresses have been friends for more than a decade. The Tig inspired The League actress to launch her own website, Alt Found.
Gavankar also took Prince Harry, Meghan Markle and baby Archie's Christmas card picture.
Meghan was pals with her Suits co-star long before they started filming the USA show together. "I saw her and was like, 'Who is this gorgeous girl?' She was just so stunning and there was just something about her, and that's how we met,” she told ET. They were born on the same day, July 4, 1981, only hours apart.
Spencer contributed to The Tig. During Meghan's baby shower trip to New York, the pair dined at Cafe Boulud and ventured to the Met Breuer.
"She has incredible taste, she has really influenced my fashion and taste. We have a lot of similarities in what we like,” Spencer told People.
Spencer was also spotted hiking with Meghan and Harry near Vancouver during their 6-week break .
The Canada crowd
Anderson has often been snapped by Meghan’s side, both during her New York baby shower weekend and when she appeared at her first Invictus Games in 2017. Anderson is a consultant for private members club Soho House.
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Fashion designer Misha Nonoo dressed Meghan during her time promoting Suits and the two often vacationed together. But most importantly, Nonoo reportedly set Meghan up with Prince Harry.
Her ex-husband Alexander Gilkes went to Eton with both princes.
Meghan has also supported her friend sartorially. The classic white button-down she wore to the Invictus Games is aptly named the “husband shirt” and was designed by Nonoo.
“We were seated next to one another at a lunch, and we got along like a house on fire,” Nonoo previously told The Evening Standard about their first meeting.
Meghan and Harry also attended Misha Nonoo's wedding last year which was also attended by Ivanka Trump and Harry's cousin Princess Beatrice.
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Mulroney became friends with Meghan after she moved to Canada to film Suits. Mulroney's husband, Ben, is the oldest son of former Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney.
Rumor has it that Meghan and Prince Harry hid out at their house when they first started dating and Mulroney’s three children all served as bridal attendants at the Royal Wedding.
Mulroney has appeared to defend Meghan on Instagram. In August of 2019, she posted about "racist bullies" when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle were being criticized for flying on a private jet.
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In June, Mulroney lost her job after a fall-out with stylist Sasha Exeter, who accused her of displaying "textbook white privilege" - Mulroney had threatened Exeter with libel after she posted a video questioning her response to the Black Lives Matter movement.
Though Meghan has not commented on the fall-out, some have speculated the row could have an impact on the closeness of her friendship with Mulroney.
The inspirational power players
Meghan and the tennis superstars first crossed paths at a charity football game back in 2014. Meghan has supported her friend by wearing her clothing line publicly.
"We hit it off immediately, taking pictures, laughing and chatting—not about tennis or acting, but about good old-fashioned girly stuff. So began our friendship....She quickly became a confidante I would text when I was traveling, the friend I would rally around for her tennis matches, and the down-to-earth chick I was able to grab lunch with a couple of weeks ago in Toronto,” she wrote on The Tig.
The admiration is mutual. “Her personality just shines. I told her, ‘You’ve got to be who you are, Meghan. You can’t hide,’” the tennis pro told Vanity Fair.
Following Megxit, Williams proved to be a loyal friend at the Australian Open, when she shut down a reporter's question about Meghan, saying: "I have absolutely no comments on anything with that. But good try."
Amal Clooney and Meghan’s friendship became clear after the Clooneys attended the Royal wedding and even made the cut for the Frogmore House after-party. George Clooney reportedly gave out shots of his Casamigos tequila brand and danced with the Duchesses. Princess Eugenie’s husband Jack Brooksbank is a Casamigos ambassador, which could be the connection.
Meghan Markle and Michelle Obama met in London to discuss women’s empowerment. The private talk happened after Michelle Obama promoted Becoming at Royal Festival Hall.
Meghan is set join Obama in a live Girl Up summit later this month, her first big solo speaking engagement since she and Harry relocated to the US.
Oprah famously attended the Royal Wedding. While she didn’t make it to the baby shower, her best friend Gayle King did.
“It left me feeling that anything is possible through the power of love,” Oprah told Vogue of the wedding.
More recently Oprah touched on Prince Harry and Meghan's decision to step down as senior royals, saying, "They don't need my advice on breaking free."
Where Oprah goes, her best friend Gayle King is sure to follow. King, a TV presenter on CBS This Morning, has never been seen with Meghan publicly. But it appears she’s close enough to the Duchess of Sussex to have scored an invitation to Meghan Markle’s New York baby shower, as she was photographed entering The Mark Hotel with a large gift bag.
King also covered Meghan’s wedding to Prince Harry as a journalist, reporting live from the scene outside.