The Duchess of Sussex has become the first person to guest edit the September issue of British Vogue which will highlight the work of several influential female trailblazers.

The magazine’s cover features 15 women whom the duchess “admires”, hailing from the worlds of activism, politics, sports, Hollywood and beyond.

Edward Enninful, editor-in-chief of British Vogue, expressed how honoured he felt to have the royal guest edit the publication’s September issue, titled “Forces for Change”.

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Gah. I’m on the COVER of the September Issue of VOGUE! With some of my heroes. Guest edited by a total hero, HRH The Duchess of Sussex, (Tahani’s good friend) and @edward_enninful created such a beautiful messaging behind this iconic issue. I grew up never seeing Pakistani or Indian girls on the cover of magazines, and this means the world to teenage me. I was a also teen model briefly and thought I would have to starve myself to get into Vogue, and it’s a Fucking BEAUTIFUL thing that it’s actually my fight against those impossible beauty standards and the diet products I tried to use to get me to that weight, got me here in the end! Thank you @britishvogue for this career highlight and extraordinary life moment that I will Never forget. ❤️ ALSO photographed by one of my FAVOURITES @TheRealPeterLindbergh, and styled by the genius @TheRealGraceCoddington, hair by @BartPumpkin and @SergeNormant, make-up by @TheValGarland and @Diane.Kendal, nails by @LorraineVGriffin and @YukoTsuchihashi. On newsstands Friday 2 August. With legends: @AdutAkech @Gemma_Chan @GretaThunberg @JameelaJamilOfficial @Chimamanda_Adichie @AdwoaAboah @JacindaArdern @FrankieGoesToHayward @SomaliBoxer @CTurlington @SalmaHayek @TheSineadBurke @JaneFonda @LaverneCox @yarashahidi

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“To have the country’s most influential beacon of change guest edit British Vogue at this time has been an honour, a pleasure and a wonderful surprise,” Enninful said.

“As you will see from her selections throughout this magazine, she is also willing to wade into more complex and nuanced areas, whether they concern female empowerment, mental health, race or privilege.”

“To have the country’s most influential beacon of change guest edit British Vogue at this time has been an honour, a pleasure and a wonderful surprise,” Enninful said.

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. Picture: Reuters

“As you will see from her selections throughout this magazine, she is also willing to wade into more complex and nuanced areas, whether they concern female empowerment, mental health, race or privilege.”

Enninful explained that he and Meghan discussed whether or not she would be featured on the cover of the issue.

However, the duchess decided that it would be a “boastful” thing to do.

“She wanted, instead, to focus on the women she admires,” the fashion stylist added.

The women chosen by the duchess and British Vogue to feature on the September issue’s cover are “brilliant female changemakers who have had a laudable impact in recent times and who are set to reshape society in radical and positive ways”, outlined a statement released by the magazine.

The cover also features a blank 16th spot, with a mirrored surface.

The mirrored 16th spot is supposed to represent the reader, in order to make them feel spurred on to make a positive impact in the world.

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The September issue of British Vogue features an exclusive interview conducted between the duchess and former US first lady Michelle Obama, in addition to a conversation between the Duke of Sussex and primatologist Dr Jane Goodall, an article written by I Weigh founder Jameela Jamil, and more.

In a post shared on the Duke and Duchess of Sussex‘s Instagram account, Meghan statedthat guest editing the September issue of the magazine over the past seven months has been a “rewarding, educational and inspirational” experience.

“To deep dive into this process, working quietly behind the scenes for so many months, I am happy to now be able to share what we have created,” the duchess said.

“A huge thanks to all of the friends who supported me in this endeavour, lending their time and energy to help within these pages and on the cover. Thank you for saying ‘Yes!’ – and to Edward, thank you for this wonderful opportunity.”

Here are the 15 women featured on the cover of British Vogue‘s “Forces for Change” September issue:

  • Adwoa Aboah – mental health campaigner and model.
  • Adut Akech – model and former refugee.
  • Ramla Ali – boxer.
  • Jacinda Ardern – prime minister of New Zealand.
  • Sinéad Burke – diversity advocate and lecturer.
  • Gemma Chan – campaigner and actor.
  • Laverne Cox – LGBT+ advocate and actor.
  • Jane Fonda – campaigner and actor.
  • Salma Hayek Pinault – women’s rights advocate, actor and producer.
  • Francesca Hayward – Royal Ballet principal dancer.
  • Jameela Jamil – body positivity advocate and actor.
  • Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie – author.
  • Yara Shahidi – founder of Eighteen x 18 and actor.
  • Greta Thunberg – climate change campaigner and student.
  • Christy Turlington Burns – founder of Every Mother Counts and model.

The cover images were captured by German photographer Peter Lindbergh, the first cover Lindbergh has photographed for British Voguesince 1992. 

The full feature in the September issue of British Vogue will be available on newsstands and via digital download on Friday 2 August.

-Independent