Kate Middleton Debuts Bright New Hair Color for Fall

Kate Middleton stunned royal admirers this week with a new hair color at an event in London. The Duchess of Cambridge had subtlely but noticeably colored her hair with a reddish tint for the Earthshot Prize Award ceremony on Sunday. By royal standards, this was a surprisingly bold fashion choice.

Middleton typically has brown hair on the darker side, but she is lightening it up this fall. Photos from Sunday's environmental event show Middleton with auburn-colored hair, and slightly tighter curls than usual. She also had her hair trimmed just a bit, though it remains long in the conventional style the royal family favors. Still, the fact that Middleton used any color at all rather than sticking with her natural hue is a bit radical for royalty.

Some photos showed off Middleton's new color better than others depending on the light and the surroundings for contrast, but photographers on hand were clearly preoccupied with getting the perfect perspective on the new look. According to a report by Woman and Home, Middleton's hair color is a trendy one this season, putting her on the cutting edge of fashion for the year.

Middleton paired the hair debut with an elegant dress in a light lavender color, cinched at the waist with a bejeweled belt. From some angles, it even looks like Middleton's auburn hair is dotted with caramel-colored highlights to set the whole look off.

If auburn hair wasn't already in vogue, it is now. Middleton joins the likes of actress Margot Robbie and Charlize Theron in setting this trend, and based on their reception so far it seems like it's going to take. Comments on every available platform praised Middleton's bold new look, and gushed with envy.

"Oh my goodness HRH Catherine looks incredible," one fan wrote with a heart-eyes emoji. Another added: "Sooo elegant, and William looks fabulous in his velvet jacket!!" while a third commented: "Their Royal Highnesses look wonderful, I'm so excited!"

Middleton and Prince William were in London to present the first-ever Earthshot Prizes on Sunday — an award to recognize those who are helping to "repair our planet over the next ten years." According to the website, the prize is meant "to turn the current pessimism surrounding environmental issues into optimism, by highlighting the ability of human ingenuity to bring about change, and inspiring collective action."

This year, there were five awards handed out in different categories. The Republic of Costa Rica won the "Protect and Restore Nature" category expanding its Ministry for Environment and hiring citizens "to protect forests, plant trees and restore ecosystems" in recent years. The Indian enterprise Takachar won the "Clean Our Air" category for developing technology that can convert agricultural waste into usable products like fuel and fertilizer.

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The "Revive Our Oceans" category went to the organization Coral Vita, which grows coral on land in the Bahamas then replants it in the oceans, while the "Build a Waste-Free World" category went to The City of Milan, which developed a new "Food Waste Hub" system to distribute overstocked food to citizens in need. Finally, the "Fix Our Climate" category was won by the company Enapter and its team that developed the AEM Electrolyser. This machine can convert renewable electricity into emission-free hydrogen gas, which in turn can power everything from cars and airplanes to homes and factories.

The Earthshot Prize is a pet project of Prince William's and is only expected to grow in the years to come. This year's winners received grants that will help them expand their new technologies and techniques, perhaps leading to even greater change.