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Meghan, Duchess of Sussex wrote letter complaining about sexist commercial at 11

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex wrote letter complaining about sexist commercial at 11
/ © Cover Media

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex has opened up about getting the sexist language of a '90s commercial changed when she was 11 years old.

At the beginning of her new Spotify podcast series Archetypes, which aims to address the stereotypes that have held women back, Meghan pinpointed her "awakening" of the double standards between men and women to her TV debut on Nick News in 1993.

The former actress appeared on the news show to speak out about a commercial for Ivory dish soap, which featured the line, "Women are fighting greasy pots and pans with Ivory Clear."

"I was furious," Meghan said of seeing the ad in class. "Then I heard them, these two boys in my class breathing life into my biggest fear. They said, 'Yeah, that's where women belong, in the kitchen.' Oh man, this did not sit well with 11-year-old me.

"I knew something was just wrong. And I knew I had to do something about it so I went on what you might call a letter-writing campaign... and I reached out to some of the most powerful people I could think of at the time, which was First Lady Hillary Clinton, attorney Gloria Allred and (Nick News host) Linda Ellerbee."

But young Meghan didn't stop there - she wrote to Ivory's manufacturer Procter & Gamble about the advert and the line was changed from "women" to "people" around three months later.

Reflecting on her achievement, the 41-year-old said, "Now I could paint this as a moment of triumph, and don't get me wrong, it was, because I learned that my one small action could have a ripple effect far beyond me. But this experience was also something bigger, an awakening to the millions of ways, big and small, that our society tries to box women in, to hold women back, to tell women who and what they should and can be. I've never lost touch with that reality, and in the last few years, my desire to do something about it has grown."

Footage of Meghan's appearance on Nick News began circulating online when she started dating now-husband Prince Harry in 2016.

Archetypes, featuring special guest Serena Williams, debuted on Tuesday.

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