Meghan Markle's Fiji Fashion Choices Double Up As A Zika Precaution
By Katie Rosseinsky Posted on 24 Oct 2018
To date, Meghan Markle’s royal tour of Australia and Fiji has been a whirlwind of meet-and-greets, photo ops and – of course – countless outfit changes. But while the Duchess of Sussex tended towards short-sleeved, even strappy styles during the Australian leg of the marathon trip (her beachy dress by cult LA label Reformation springs to mind…), often in darker navy blue hues, her on-duty style seems to have shifted dramatically since touching down in Fiji - and it’s certainly not a coincidence.
Of the three outfits in which Meghan has been pictured since arriving on the island, two - a smart white shift dress by Aussie label Zimmerman and a printed wrap dress with frilled skirt by Figue - have featured long sleeves; the third, the stunning Safiyaa gown worn for a state dinner, featured a caped effect, albeit with shorter sleeves. The Duchess’s new look is almost certainly a precaution against the Zika virus - albeit a very stylish one.
Fiji is thought to currently have a moderate risk of the Zika virus, which is transmitted via mosquito bites and can cause birth defects including microcephaly if contracted by a pregnant woman. Despite this, it was confirmed by the Palace shortly after Meghan’s pregnancy was announced that she and her husband Prince Harry would continue their visit to Fiji and Tonga (another risk area) as planned.
After taking medical advice, the royal couple will doubtless be adhering closely to health precautions that will minimise any risk of infection - one of which relates to Meghan’s wardrobe. As Professor James G. Logan, Head of the Department of Disease Control at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, explained to People magazine: ‘Wearing long sleeves and baggy clothes will help. Mosquitos can bite through jeans so if the clothing is loose it’s much harder for the mosquito to bite.’
Look back at Meghan’s royal tourdrobe in the gallery below…
Even Meghan’s switch-up from her go-to dark blue shades will have been calculated to minimise the risk, he adds, explaining how ‘wearing light-coloured clothing can help as these mosquitos are often attracted to dark clothing. It also helps you spot them, if you see a dark mosquito on a light piece of clothing.’
It’s also presumed that Meghan will be avoiding visiting the local rainforest areas while in Fiji, and that her royal schedule will be amended with this in mind.
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