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10 differences between Meghan Markle's and Kate Middleton's pregnancies and royal births

·10 min read
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meghan harry kate will baby reveals
Kate Middleton's and Meghan Markle's royal baby births have had some major differences. Chris Jackson/Getty Images, Dominic Lipinski/AFP/Getty Image
  • Meghan Markle announced her pregnancy with Lilibet with a photo; Kate Middleton used palace statements.

  • Middleton had her children at a London hospital; Markle gave birth to her second in the US.

  • Middleton usually held the babies for their first photos, but Markle and Harry both held Archie.

  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

The royal family issued formal statements announcing Kate Middleton's first two pregnancies, and they used Twitter to announce her third in 2017 after she had to cancel a planned appearance.

kate middleton pregnancy tweet
Kate Middleton's pregnancy announcement via Twitter. KensingtonRoyal/Twitter

A formal statement followed in a subsequent tweet: "Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Cambridge is expecting their third child.

"The Queen and members of both families are delighted with the news.

"As with her previous two pregnancies, The Duchess is suffering from Hyperemesis Gravidarum. Her Royal Highness will no longer carry out her planned engagement at the Hornsey Road Children's Centre in London today. The Duchess is being cared for at Kensington Palace."

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry announced their first pregnancy on social media before their royal tour of Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Tonga in 2018.

Meghan Markle Prince Harry in Australia 2018
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in Australia in 2018. Pool/Samir Hussein/Getty Images

"Their Royal Highnesses The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are very pleased to announce that The Duchess of Sussex is expecting a baby in the Spring of 2019," the couple announced via Kensington Palace's official Instagram account. "Their Royal Highnesses have appreciated all of the support they have received from people around the world since their wedding in May and are delighted to be able to share this happy news with the public."

Middleton was often photographed while pregnant, but she didn't include any maternity photos in her pregnancy announcements.

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Kate Middleton pregnant in 2013. Stefan Wermuth/Reuters

Middleton often wore patterned maternity dresses and vibrant coats.

Markle and Harry announced they were expecting their second child with a black-and-white portrait taken at their California home.

meghan markle prince harry baby no. 2 pregnancy reveal
A new photo of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex shared by representatives for the couple. Misan Harriman; Copyright owned by The Duke and Duchess of Sussex © 2021

The black-and-white shot was taken on an iPad by the Nigerian-born British photographer and longtime friend of the Duchess of Sussex Misan Harriman. It shows the couple relaxing outside, Markle lying on her back with her hand on her baby bump and resting her head on Harry's lap.

"We can confirm that Archie is going to be a big brother. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are overjoyed to be expecting their second child," a spokesperson for the couple told Insider via email.

The announcement came on Valentine's Day 2021, 37 years to the day after newspapers shared the news that Princess Diana was pregnant with Prince Harry.

Kate Middleton didn't have baby showers, as far as anyone knows.

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Kate Middleton at a royal engagement in 2018. KGC-178/STAR MAX/IPx 2018/AP

She was busy with royal engagements while sporting enviable maternity looks.

When Meghan Markle was pregnant with Archie, she had a baby shower in New York City hosted by her friends.

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Meghan Markle in New York City. Raymond Hall/GC Images

Markle's baby shower was reportedly hosted by Serena Williams and Amal Clooney in a $75,000-a-night penthouse suite of The Mark Hotel on Manhattan's Upper East Side in February 2019. She was spotted leaving the hotel after the shower in casual black leggings and a baseball cap. Afterwards, she reportedly had a second baby shower in the UK.

Middleton gave birth to all three of her children at the Lindo Wing of St. Mary's Hospital in London.

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Prince William and Kate Middleton with the newly-born Prince Louis in 2018. Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Princess Diana and Prince Charles greeted photographers outside the Lindo Wing of St. Mary's Hospital in London in 1982 after Prince William was born. The prince became the first heir to be born in a hospital in 1982.

Middleton continued the tradition by having all three of her children at the Lindo Wing and posing for photos shortly after giving birth.

Archie's birth certificate states he was born in Portland Hospital in London.

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Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor's birth certificate. Jonathan Brady/PA Images via Getty Images

It used to be tradition for royal babies to be born at home. Queen Elizabeth had home births for all of her children.

Rumors emerged in April 2019 that the duchess was considering having her child at Frogmore Cottage in Windsor. However, Archie's birth certificate confirmed that Markle gave birth at Portland Hospital at 5:26 a.m. on May 6, 2019.

Markle gave birth to her second child, Lilibet, at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital in Santa Barbara, California.

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Meghan Markle with Archie on the beach in California. CBS

Their second child is eighth in line for the throne — pushing back Prince Andrew, Princess Beatrice, and Princess Eugenie in the royal line of succession. And since Markle gave birth in America, Lilibet is eligible to serve as president of the United States someday.

William and Middleton announced the births of their children through Kensington Palace's official social media accounts.

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Kensington Palace's announcement of Prince Louis' birth in 2018. KensingtonRoyal/Twitter

Royal births are marked in more traditional ways as well, with a 62-gun salute and an easel set up outside Buckingham Palace.

Harry and Markle shared the news of Archie's birth more informally on their own Instagram account.

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have their own Instagram account. sussexroyal/Instagram

Harry and Markle created their own Instagram account, @sussexroyal, after splitting their household from the Cambridges. They posted a jubilant "It's a BOY!" birth announcement after Markle gave birth to a son.

They also used the account to wish Prince Louis a happy birthday, though some thought their comment broke royal protocol.

As they began their transition out of royal life in February 2020, Harry and Markle confirmed they would change the name of their brand so it no longer included the word "royal," and stopped posting to their @sussexroyal account.

In April 2020, they rebranded by launching a non-profit organization named Archewell after their son, Archie.

They announced the birth of their second child in a statement through their non-profit organization, Archewell.

archewell birth announcement
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced the birth of their second child through Archewell. Archewell

Markle and Harry announced the birth of their daughter in a statement on Archewell's website on June 6, two days after Lilibet was born.

"She is more than we could have ever imagined, and we remain grateful for the love and prayers we've felt from across the globe," the couple said in the statement. "Thank you for your continued kindness and support during this very special time for our family."

Middleton and William introduced their babies to the world on the steps of the Lindo Wing.

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Prince William and Kate Middleton with Prince Louis. Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Camera flashes can be seen reflected off the glass in the background.

Markle and Harry posed at St. George's Hall in Windsor Castle for their first photo-call as parents.

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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry with their new baby. Dominic Lipinski/ AFP/ Getty Images.

It's the same place they got married.

Since Markle and Harry are no longer affiliated with the royal family, there won't be an official royal introduction this time around.

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The entrance of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's estate in Montecito, California. VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images

Harry and Markle shared a photo taken in their backyard to announce their second pregnancy, but the birth announcement did not include a photo, and they're unlikely to hold any kind of press event to introduce their new baby to the public.

William and Middleton's children made their public debuts when they were just hours old.

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Prince Louis the day he was born. Chris Jackson/Getty Images

About six hours after giving birth to Prince Louis, Middleton and William appeared on the steps of the Lindo Wing for the traditional photo call with their newest addition.

Middleton's personal hairdresser, Amanda Cook Tucker, and her stylist, Natasha Archer, were seen entering the hospital to help her get camera-ready.

According to The New York Post, Markle "felt sorry" for Middleton after she stepped out for photographers just hours after giving birth to Prince Louis.

Markle and Harry waited two days to introduce Archie to the world.

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Prince Harry and Meghan Markle with their new baby in 2018. Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images

Before Markle gave birth to Archie, a palace statement said that they would be celebrating the occasion privately before making press appearances.

"Their Royal Highnesses have taken a personal decision to keep the plans around the arrival of their baby private," the statement said. "The Duke and Duchess look forward to sharing the exciting news with everyone once they have had an opportunity to celebrate privately as a new family."

Speaking to reporters after he was born, Harry said they would hold a photo call with the new baby in two days.

"That's the next bit, but for us, we will be seeing you guys in two days time as planned as a family to be able to share it with you guys, so everybody can see the baby," he said.

William was busy taking Prince George and Princess Charlotte to meet their new brother and didn't speak to the press after Louis was born.

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Prince William brought Prince George and Princess Charlotte to the hospital to meet Prince Louis. Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images

Princess Charlotte stole the show with her royal wave.

Harry held an impromptu press conference after Markle gave birth to their first child and talked about how excited he was to be a father.

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Prince Harry held an impromptu press conference after the birth of his first child. The Royal Family Channel/YouTube

The Duke of Sussex spoke to the media outside Windsor Castle to announce that he and Markle had welcomed a "very healthy boy."

"Mother and baby are doing incredibly well," he said. "It's been the most amazing experience I could ever possibly imagine. How any woman does what they do is beyond comprehension, but we are both absolutely thrilled and so grateful to all the love and support from everybody out there. It's been amazing, we just wanted to share this with everybody."

Middleton wore Jenny Packham dresses for all three of her post-birth photo-ops.

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Kate Middleton wore Jenny Packham. Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Packham is one of Middleton's favorite designers, and her go-to for appearances with all three of her newly born children.

Markle wore a dress from designer Grace Wales Bonner to introduce Archie to the press.

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Markle in a Givenchy dress. Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images

She paired the sleeveless blazer dress with nude heels and wore loose curls and natural make-up.

Middleton usually held the babies for the photos.

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Kate Middleton dotes on Prince Louis. Chris Jackson/Getty Images

William is definitely a hands-on father who reportedly works out with parents from Prince George's school after dropoff, but Middleton usually held the babies for their first photos.

Markle and Harry switched it up, having him hold their newborn for photos, too.

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Meghan Markle and Prince Harry look at their son. Dominic Lipinski - WPA Pool/Getty Images

He held the little one as the couple emerged in George's Hall at Windsor Castle while they chatted with photographers.

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