Meghan Markle and Prince Harry spent the beginning of their relationship ensconced in privacy—but the royal couple are about to become one of the most public duos alive. That said, they've only appeared together a handful of times—and those appearances say so much about their dynamic behind closed doors. MarieClaire.com spoke to body language expert Traci Brown, author of Persuasion Point: Body Language and Speech for Influence, to find out more about Meghan and Harry's relationship based on their all their public (and a few private) interactions.
CAUGHT KISSING BEFORE THEY WERE OFFICIAL
This is a moment from the very beginning of Meghan and Harry's life in the public eye, and they clearly didn't know they were being photographed. Harry is fully leaning into Meghan, which Brown says is a sign of their "connection."
THEIR FIRST PUBLIC HAND-HOLD
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle broke royal protocol when they decided to hold hands during their first official appearance together at the Invictus Games, and in this moment, Harry is taking the lead. "See how the back of his hand is forward? That shows who is in control and leading in the moment," Brown says. "She's definitely tagging along at his thing here—but at other times we see her leading. You don't see that a lot from William and Kate—you see him leading most of the time."
THE FIRST TIME THEY WENT OUT AS AN OFFICIAL COUPLE
Judging from her body language, Brown says that Meghan is likely "sharing a secret with Harry," or at the very least saying something only for his ears. And the fact that she's doing this with cameras on her (and the lip readers of the world ready to pounce) says a lot about how comfortable they are together.
THEIR PRIVATE (ER, KINDA) KISS IN THE VIP SECTION
In this highly adorable photo, Meghan and Harry are enjoying the closing ceremony of the Invictus Games in a VIP box. In other words, they don't know cameras are on them. In other-other words, this is a glimpse at how they act in private. "They're not afraid to show PDA," Brown says. "These aren't official photos, so they're more telling. What we see from them in unofficial photos is the same as what we see in official ones. It shows that they're genuine."
HOW THEY ARE WHEN IT'S JUST THE TWO OF THEM
Another glimpse at Meghan and Harry behind the scenes (not exactly knowing that the camera is on them) implies that they likely don't have any secrets from one another: "They're looking at each other in close range," says Brown. "They look each other in the eyes quite frequently at that distance, and that's hard to do unless you're really comfortable with someone. You really can't have that many secrets with each other when you do that."
WALKING TO THEIR FIRST PHOTO SHOOT
"She looks him in the eye a lot," Brown continues. "I don't believe this moment is made for TV. People don't look each other in the eye that much unless they're really deeply connected."
THEIR OFFICIAL ENGAGEMENT PHOTO CALL
This is how Meghan and Harry chose to pose for many of their official portraits—and while a lot of fuss has been made over Harry's hand being partially in his jacket (more on that in a second), take a look at how Meghan is holding her hands.
"She always has two hands on him when she has the chance to do it," Brown says. "She's really connected to him and she's not going to let him go. You can tell by the way she's angling her ring—she's super proud of the relationship they have."
Re: Harry's hand, Brown confirms that it's a habit (he's been doing it for years) and he's simply "putting up a little guard between himself and the photographers who follow him around. Having both hands behind his back [a typical royal pose] would show complete vulnerability."
GOING BACK HOME, JUST THE TWO OF THEM
This is Harry and Meghan walking away from photographers after their official engagement shoot—a sweet private moment during a very public spectacle. "She has her arm wrapped around him tight—he's not quite as tight as she is," Brown notes. "But that's what we see from her: She is not going to let him go. She's completely taken by his mystique. This is definitely not an arranged marriage."
THEIR FIRST POST-ENGAGEMENT INTERVIEW
Meghan and Harry were pretty calm, cool, and collected during their first post-engagement interview together but... then there was the adorable behind-the-scenes footage. Keep in mind, Meghan and Harry didn't know what would be included in the final cut, and this footage offers a rare example of what they're like behind closed doors. "They're really highlighting the differences and energy of their relationship compared to Will and Kate," Brown says. "They're a lot looser, they have a lot more outward fun together, which is more American. This moment, in particular, shows how playful they are. You have to have a certain amount of confidence in your relationship to be that playful in public."
HEADING HOME FROM THEIR FIRST ROYAL ENGAGEMENT
Brown notes that this photo offers a glimpse into the couple's "transition from public to their private life. The curtain didn't completely close, and it shows that what we see in public is also how they are in private. These two are for sure in love."
THEIR FIRST APPEARANCE INTERVIEW
In comparison to how William and Kate are during interviews (quite prim and proper), you can see how completely laid back and familiar Meghan and Harry are. "We see a lot more over emotion from Meghan's body language than Kate's," Brown says. "Meghan's going to shake things up a little bit for the royal family."
THEIR FIRST TIME WITH DEALING WITH MASS AMOUNTS OF FANS
This is the first time Harry and Meghan faced massive crowds, and she's back at it with the double hand hold. "In general, she has always got two hands on him," Brown says. "That just shows their connection and also shows she's not letting him go, which is really different than we've seen from any other royal. But note that she doesn't look insecure, or like she's holding on for dear life. She's totally comfortable, just keeping the connection."
THE DOUBLE HAND HOLD!
A closer view of Meghan's hand-holding game.
HARRY LEADING MEGHAN AWAY FROM THE CROWD
Notice how Harry is lightly touching Meghan's back as they say hello to fans? "This shows his chivalry—he's guiding her around a little bit," Brown says. "Not too much. He's not wrapping his arm around and dragging her around, he's just saying with this touch, 'Hey, let's go this way.' He really wants to stay in a unit together."
AND FINALLY, THIS CUTE MOMENT IN NOTTINGHAM
This might seem like a simple candid, but it actually says a lot: "Here, their body language is mirroring. Couples who do the same thing at the same time—it shows that they're on the same wavelength. They're showing similar emotions. They're in sync."
From: Marie Claire US
This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors.