Among all the headlines Meghan Markle has been making since Kensington Palace announced her engagement to Prince Harry last month, an article the actress herself penned over two years ago has quietly resurfaced. Written for the independent magazine Darling in the spring of 2015, "It's All Enough" is a personal essay in which Markle describes her own experience with unrealistic beauty standards in Hollywood. Though her looks have inspired many to learn her beauty secrets—and some to go under the knife—Markle spoke to the challenges she faced during her days as a struggling actress.
"I was in my early 20s, still figuring so much out, and trying to find my value in an industry that judges you on everything that you're not versus everything that you are," Markle recounts in the essay. "Not thin enough, not pretty enough, not ethnic enough, while also being too thin, too ethnic, too pretty the very next day." It was when a casting director told her that, "you need to know that you're enough" that Markle had what she considers a wake-up call about redefining what beauty is and not allowing the words of others to define her. And though Markle has long since grown from the days she describes as wearing too much self-tanner and "excessive blush," she continues to find her looks to be the subject of the narrative of others even outside of Hollywood, especially as the media focuses on her racial identity and mixed-race background.
But just as Markle wonderfully articulated the struggle of not fitting in at the start of her career, we know she'll continue to be an enlightening voice of empowerment—about beauty standards and beyond—as she continues to stay in the spotlight.
Head here to read all of Meghan Markle's personal essay.