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100 Best Things in Pop Culture: No. 6 Kate Middleton, Clothing Recycler

Duchess Catherine, Kate Middleton Indigo/Getty Images; Rex USA

It's hard out here for a princess. (Er, a duchess?) In 2012, the very idea of a monarchy is starting to feel as outdated as fax machines and actually spelling out the words "oh my God." Outside of Disney franchises and reality-show pageants, tiara-wearing glamour girls are being overtaken by action heroines and self-assured music starlets in the race for public adulation.

But for Kate Middleton, the gorgeous and maybe-pregnant-maybe-not bride of Britain's Prince William, it's not the regal title that's got us hooked, it's how she wears it.

Specifically, it's how she wears it more than once.

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Since getting hitched to William in April of 2011, Kate's wardrobe has been the object of intense scrutiny by fashion constables on both sides of the pond—pretty typical for a woman of her stature who steps out in eye-popping formalwear on the regular. What's less typical (and flat-out awesome) is that she's been spotted wearing the same outfit on multiple occasions, or even mixing and matching select separates like a—gasp!—normal person.

From the pink Emilia Wickstead dress she wore to two different events this past May to the purple sweater she sported twice in the same week last August, paparazzi lore is ever-more littered with these accounts of the princess who dares to dip back into her own hamper once in a while.

We're not saying a penchant for fashion repeats should make Kate eligible for a humanitarian prize (check her growing résumé of charity work for that). But it's definitely inspiring to see a woman in her position defy the usual image-crazed conventions of the upper crust. 

And with the global economy looking shakier by the quarter, it's even more fitting that she favors a reuse-and-recycle approach to her own closets. Best of all, it doesn't seem like a calculated move on Kate's part, but rather a natural expression of her style: infinitely classy yet warm and unpretentious.

Mind you, if those baby bump rumors prove to be true, she's gonna have to at least pick up a new pair of yoga pants.

GET THE LIST: The 100 Best Things in Pop Culture

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