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See Emma Watson's First Red Carpet Appearance Since Retirement Rumors

The actor returned to the public eye for a good cause.

Though she came to fame as a child actor starring in one of the most famous film franchises of all time, Emma Watson is on the more private end of the scale when it comes to celebrities. She rarely posts on social media (and when she does it's about one of the causes she supports), she doesn't take on movie roles often, and she tends to not talk about her personal life in interviews. In fact, she's so private that rumors have circulated that she's retired from acting. After two years of (mostly) living life outside of the public eye, however, Watson just made her red carpet return. And, of course, it was for a good cause.

Watson made her first major appearance in two years at the Earthshot Prize 2021 ceremony (where the carpet was technically green) on Sunday, Oct. 17 in London. The prize is all about finding solutions to the climate crisis, so the 31-year-old actor was sure to make a statement about sustainability with the outfit she wore, too. Read on to see Watson at the award ceremony, which was also attended by Prince William and Kate Middleton, and to learn more about her look.

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Watson had to shut down retirement rumors earlier this year.

Emma Watson at the Earthshot Prize 2021
Neil Mockford/FilmMagic via Getty Images

The last time Watson attended a red carpet event was in December 2019 for the premiere of her movie Little Women, in which she played Meg March. In the time since, she has faced retirement rumors, which she spoke out about in a rare Twitter post. In February, it was reported that Watson's acting career was "dormant" and that she was engaged. Soon, her manager told Entertainment Weekly, "Emma's social media accounts are dormant but her career isn't."

A few months later, Watson spoke out about the rumors herself. "Dear Fans, Rumours about whether I'm engaged or not, or whether my career is 'dormant or not' are ways to create clicks each time they are revealed to be true or untrue," she wrote on Twitter in May. "If I have news – I promise I'll share it with you." According to her IMDB profile, Watson does not have any future roles in the books just yet.

Sunday's event was for a cause Watson is passionate about.

Emma Watson and Ed Sheeran talking to Kate Middleton and Prince William at the Earthshot Prize ceremony
Alberto Pezzali – WPA Pool/Getty Images

The Earthshot Prize was established by Prince William and David Attenborough and is part of The Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Each year, for 10 years, five winners will receive £1 million to continue their efforts to fight climate change. This is the first year the prize was given out.

Watson has been outspoken about the climate crisis, particularly on the topic of sustainable fashion. On the same day as the Earthshot Prize ceremony, the first Instagram in over a year was posted to her account. The post is in support of the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference (Cop26) in Glasgow, Scotland, and her bio now reads, "Emma's official Instagram has been taken over by an anonymous Feminist Collective for Cop26."

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Watson's outfit was perfect for the ceremony.

Emma Watson at the Earthshot Prize 2021
Karwai Tang/WireImage via Getty Images

Watson not only walked the green carpet, she also presented at the ceremony. And she did so in an outfit that was fitting for the event. The Harry Potter star wore a dress made of recycled wedding gowns by the designer Harris Reed. As Reed explained on Instagram, Watson's white asymmetrical dress was made from wedding dresses from thrift stores. She also wore black flared pants and chunky black boots.

She's been wearing planet-friendly fashion for years.

Emma Watson at the "Beauty and the Beast" photocall in Paris in February 2017
Stephane Cardinale – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images

Watson has made a point to wear more sustainable fashions when she attends events. In addition to wearing recycled and reworked clothes as she did at the Earthshot Prize, she has also often worn vintage clothing and outfits made out of more sustainable materials. For instance, she wore a blazer made out of deadstock fabric at the G7 Summit in 2019, and in 2017, she wore a dress made from fabric composed of recycled water bottles while promoting Beauty and the Beast. She previously had an Instagram account documenting all of her fashion choices for events and talk shows.

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Lia Beck
Lia Beck is a writer living in Richmond, Virginia. In addition to Best Life, she has written for Refinery29, Bustle, Hello Giggles, InStyle, and more. Read more
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