Recycling an outfit has historically been one of the biggest red carpet faux pas, but in recent years we’ve seen celebs and royals (including Kate Middleton andMeghan Markle) buck the trend and re-wear their favorite looks again and again. Padma Lakshmi just upped the ante, wearing a stunning J. Mendel gown on the 2018 Emmys red carpet, serving up a powerful message about outdated fashion “rules.”

The Top Chef host wore a red J. Mendel gown with intricate ruching on the bodice and a thigh-high slit for TV’s biggest night, and if it looked at all familiar to you it’s because she wore the same gown last October at the VogueIndia Women of the Year Awards in Mumbai.

Of the choice to don the dress for a second public event, Lakshmi told People, “I’m excited to wear this beautiful J. Mendel dress again. I think in this day and age we should stop sending the message to young women and girls that we all have these endless closets of clothes we never wear more than once, especially on a red carpet.”

She added, “The hours that it takes, the artisans’ labor, and the gorgeous fabrics all deserve to be worn again and treasured. It seems wasteful not to enjoy these dresses.” Plus, she admitted that while “fashion is fun,” she thinks there are simply “more important ways to spend my time than to have hours of fittings for these big events.”

Not only is the hoopla “a lot of pressure,” but the cookbook author added that “what matters is the work that got us here to the Emmys. Instead of fretting so much over what to wear, I’d rather go to the park and throw a ball with [my daughter] or tinker in the kitchen with her bonding over delicious food. I want to teach her that there is more to life.”

Lakshmi did change up her look, this time wearing her hair in a glossy blowout, as compared to the sleek, pulled back wet look she rocked last fall. The only other change? A blue ribbon to show support for the American Civil Liberties Union that was pinned to her hip this time around. A little accessory with a powerful message, indeed.

What do you think of Padma re-wearing her J. Mendel gown? Let us know @BritandCo!

(Photos via Dimitrios Kambouris +John Shearer+STR/AFP/Getty)