Award season has all the stars collaborating with high-end designers who are yearning to have their work ogled on the red carpet. From the Oscars to the Met Gala and movie premieres to after-parties, Hollywood celebrities love dressing to impress.
While some stars arrive wearing forgettable pieces, others own their look and stun everyone on the red carpet, such as Zendaya wearing a monarch butterfly dress to a movie premiere and Madonna rocking a Gothic priestess ensemble at the Met Gala. Keep scrolling to see some of the best dresses worn by Hollywood’s elite throughout the years.
Blake Lively Slaying The 2018 Met Gala ‘Heavenly Bodies’ Theme
Blake Lively stunned at the 2018 Met Gala. Her custom Versace dress went perfectly with that year’s theme of “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion & The Catholic Imagination.” According to Harpers Bazaar, the elaborate ruby and gold gown took over 600 hours to make, most likely due to the expensive and intricate beading woven throughout the piece!
Lively’s dress wasn’t the only thing people were discussing during her carpet walk. She wore around $2 million worth of Lorraine Schwartz jewelry, including a set of gold bracelets, Colombian emerald and diamond earrings, and three diamond and ruby rings. The custom halo tiara even featured 100-carats worth of champagne diamonds!
Kate Hudson At The 2014 Oscars
Kate Hudson is one of those celebrities who flawlessly flaunts her assets without going over the top. She seamlessly rocked this custom white Atelier Versace dress at the 86th Annual Oscars, wearing a cape like the superwoman she is.
The deep neck-plunge could have skewed the dress away from being classy, but Hudson is able to pull off the risky look with pure perfection. Aside from the flowing train and shoulder-padded cape, the gown has beautifully-woven detailing around the waist as well as intricate beading. The look made her one of the best-dressed celebrities of the night.
Cate Blanchett At The 2018 Cannes Film Festival
Cate Blanchett’s customized Mary Katrantzou dress that she wore for the 2018 Cannes Film Festival was anything but ordinary. The intricate design took six months to finish, with three of those weeks spent on the colorful embroidery seen throughout the majority of the piece. Some of the materials used for the dress were sequins, Swarovski crystal, and bugle beads.
The best part about this design is the story it tells. Looking closely at the black-and-white side of the dress, a “paint by numbers” concept is showcased, which explains the colorful pattern of the other side. Katrantzuo says that the design was inspired by “nostalgic childhood pastimes.”
Jennifer Garner At The 2018 Oscars
In 2018, Jennifer Garner brought some old-time glamour back to the Oscars award ceremony. She looked like a million bucks, wearing a cobalt blue sleeveless Versace gown accented with $825,000 worth of jewelry, including dangling 18-carat white gold earrings set with blue sapphires and diamonds.
The dress featured a sweeping cape and train as well as a fitted bodice, showing off Garner’s athletic frame. She also paid homage to old Hollywood, deciding to do a dramatic blowout swept to the side. Of course, the 2018 Oscar awards are now known as the ceremony that brought us the “what am I doing here” meme, featuring Garner.
Meghan Markle During The Trooping The Colour In 2018
In 2018, Meghan Markle wore somewhat controversial attire to the Trooping the Colour ceremony in London, the Queen’s birthday. The ensemble was considered scandalous by some because of the off-the-shoulder design, something not customarily worn by the Royal family. The unofficial rule is that women in the family shouldn’t reveal their shoulders in public.
Regardless, Markle looked flawless in the baby pink Carolina Herrera top and midi-skirt. The garment was adorned with large side-buttoning detailing and was accompanied by a matching pink hat. The look was gorgeous. But, if Meghan Markle is wearing it, anything looks gorgeous!
Madonna Channeling The 2018 Met Gala Theme “Heavenly Bodies”
Madonna channeled her inner Gothic priestess during the 2018 Met Gala, wearing a Jean Paul Gaultier ensemble. Her look included a black bodysuit with a sheer cross cut-out, a full and dramatic black skirt, a fish-net veil, and lots and lots of crosses. The gold diamond crown, as well as thinly layered necklaces, both adorned the symbol.
The Queen of Pop is no stranger to using religious imagery in her everyday fashion. In the ’80s, Madonna was known for wearing the same style of layered crosses around her neck. Although the look is tamed down compared to her other styles, Madonna is always up for a bit of good fashion controversy!
Emma Watson Rocking Recycled Bottles At The 2016 Met Gala
Emma Watson is best known for her role as Hermione Granger, the book-smart witch in the Harry Potter franchise. Well, she took some brains from her genius character to create this look for the 2016 Met Gala. The theme that year was “Manus x Machina: Fashion in the Age of Technology.”
Watson took the theme and ran with it, opting to use recycled plastic bottles to create this fitted bodice with off-the-shoulder sleeves and pant-skirt combo, by Calvin Klein. She then opted for minimal jewelry, seemingly wanting to showcase the extravagance of her magical ensemble.
Lupita Nyong’o At The 2017 Cannes Film Festival
Lupita Nyong’o looked like a dream at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival. Walking down the red carpet in a flowing green Gucci dress, Nyongo’o’s look was something to remember. The jade piece had a plunging neckline and was paired with floral embroidered crystal detailing on the shoulders and waist.
Nyong’o then accented the look with a vibrant pink lip, a gorgeous gold headpiece surrounding a lavish up-do, and dangling earrings, making her look like absolute royalty in front of the cameras.
Vanessa Hudgens At The 2020 Vanity Fair Oscar Party
In 2020, Vanessa Hudgens strutted her stuff down the Vanity Fair Oscar Party carpet in this gorgeous purple dress. The silk piece was designed by Vera Wang and included a halter tie, statement bow, plunging neckline, and a long train that Hudgens twirled around in the air like an Olympic rhythmic gymnastics dancer.
The typically bohemian-dressed actress kept her jewelry simple, choosing to wear a few rings but none of her typical chokers or long-layered necklaces. All in all, Hudgens look absolutely stunning walking into the Oscars afterparty.
Zendaya At The Greatest Showman Premiere
Zendaya did the impossible during the Australia premiere of The Greatest Showman. She turned into a walking human butterfly but didn’t look like she was wearing a Halloween costume. The monarch creation came from Moschino’s Spring 2018 runaway collection that was inspired by nature. Zendaya steered clear of flashy jewelry, so as not to take away from the lavish dress.
Instead, she opted to do a colorful yet neutral eye, as any high-fashion butterfly would, using yellows and reds to match the wings on the dress. The look was completed with a pair of simple black strappy Stuart Weitzman heels, something that once again brought more focus to the actual dress.
Scarlett Johansson At The Avengers: Endgame World Premier
Scarlett Johansson channeled her inner Black Widow with a custom mesh Versace gown comprised of Swarovski crystals. The dress was strapless, form-fitting, and had a slit up one side. The elaborate cut-outs on the back also showcase Johansson’s back tattoo, something fans of the actress tend to forget is there.
Although Johansson absolutely rocked the purple carpet in her chainmail dress, it wasn’t what had everyone starring at the Black Widow. The most creative detail of this piece was the jewelry she wore on her left hand — rings and a bracelet that resembled the Gauntlet of Infinity Stones from the movie.
Angelina Jolie At The Premiere Of Maleficent: Mistress of Evil
Although Angelina Jolie doesn’t walk the red carpet as often as she used to, when she does, she doesn’t fail to impress. The Maleficent: Mistress of Evil star embodied her witchy character during the premiere in London, wearing a Ralph & Russo Couture ensemble.
Equal parts delicate and strong, the dress is a beaded white gown with gold piping around the chest and torso, giving it an armor look. Tack on the flowing cape, metallic shoulder pads, and silver spider embroidery, and we’re not sure if Jolie is dressed to walk the red carpet or march into battle as a lead general.
Amy Adams At The 2013 Oscars Ceremony
Amy Adams was dressed to impress during the 2013 Oscar ceremony, which she was nominated for Best Supporting Actress in The Master. Her soft-gray piece was brought to life by Oscar de la Renta, a design Adams helped envision. Not many people can pull off the combination of old-fashioned Hollywood glamour and modern styles quite as well as Adams.
The strapless, puffy dress was perfectly paired with Mouawad jewelry. Note that she was not wearing a necklace, making it so the dress was the centerpiece and not something hanging from her neck. Genius. This is the perfect example of someone wearing the clothing and not the other way around.
Jennifer Lawrence At The 2013 Oscars Ceremony
Jennifer Lawrence looked like a princess during the 85th Annual Academy Awards Ceremony in 2013. She walked down the red carpet wearing a pale bridal-style gown designed by Dior Couture. She made it work, pairing the high-fashion dress with a long thin diamond necklace going down her back, an upswept hair-style, and dangling diamond earrings.
The skirt of the dress was beautifully layered with a dramatic train trailing in the back. Of course, this dress also caused a slight issue for J-Law. On the way to accept her Best Actress award for Silver Linings Playbook, she tripped on the dress and fell on the stage’s staircase!
Vanessa Hudgens At The Bad Boys For Life Premiere
Leave it to fashionista Vanessa Hudgens to pull off this Georges Hobeika dress. The asymmetrical white dress featured a flowing gauzy skirt with a high slit, one feathered sleeve that starts at the collar, more features at the waist, and a crystal-embellished bodice to pull it all together. The dress is definitely what one would call a statement piece!
Hudgens paired the extravagant dress with simple black heels, giving her look a dangerous edge. Tack on the old-school Hollywood blowout, minimalist makeup, and studded earrings, and Hudgens once again slayed the movie premiere carpet.
Zendaya At The Spider-Man: Far From Home Premiere
Zendaya channeled her inner spidey during the Los Angeles premiere for Spider-Man: Far From Home. The young actress wore a Spider-Man inspired gown of red and black sequins, designed by Armani Privé. Backless with side cut-outs, the dress was fierce and daring.
Zendaya’s stylist, Law Roach, paired the dress with black Louboutin heels, completing the spidey look. If she were Spider-Man, this would be her suit (although a bit unconventional!). Fans also think Zendaya paid homage to her character, Mary Jane, with her dark red hair color, a shade that’s close to MJ’s hair in the comics.
Reese Witherspoon At the 2016 International Film Festival
During the 2016 International film Festival in Toronto, Ontario, Reese Witherspoon stunned in a pristine floral dress. The piece went mid-thigh with fabric that had a pale pink background and a floral pattern. With an off-the-shoulder neckline, Witherspoon wore the Ulyana Sergeenko Couture piece to perfection.
The actress decided to play her accessories simple, only adorned with a few sparkly rings, earrings, and a bracelet, courtesy of Irene Neuwirth. Witherspoon completed her look with a pair of pointed-toe ankle-strap heels by Christian Louboutin.
Nina Dobrev At The 2016 Met Gala
In 2016, Nina Dobrev went off-theme for the Met Gala. Instead of going with the “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology” theme, Dobrev decided to channel her Vampire Diaries days, specifically her character Katherine. The show was known for outfitting Dobrev in beautiful gowns, and it seemed as though she wanted to pay homage to a character that was a huge part of her life.
Marchesa designed the gold beaded gown. But her beauty on the red carpet wasn’t the only thing Dobrev had up her delicate sleeve that night. During the after-party, quick alternations were made to transform the skirt into a cocktail party-worthy bubble dress!
Marion Cotillard At The 2008 Academy Awards Ceremony
Marion Cotillard stunned the 2008 Academy Awards red carpet in what is best described as a mermaid dress. The piece was part of the Jean Paul Gaultier couture collection and featured a fishtail-like shape with gold-trimmed scallop detailing. She paired the Ariel-inspired dress with long gold necklaces, probably to help bring out the gold in the dress.
Cotillard’s dress looked all the better after she won the Best Lead Actress Oscar for her role as Edith Piaf in La Vie En Rose. It was the best accessory an actress could ask for while posing for pictures at the Oscars!
Margot Robbie At The 2018 Oscars
Margot Robbie is a classic beauty and looks good in pretty much anything, but her look at the 2018 Oscars ceremony was one of her best. Robbie stunned in a white Chanel gown that featured drooping sleeves and a long train. The piece was elegant and was the perfect choice for the first-time Oscar nominee.
Although the dress was very luxurious, Robbie’s stylist Kate Young opted to pair it with a plastic handbag to give it a modern edge. She also went minimalist with the jewelry choices, only wearing earrings to create a polished look.
Julianne Moore At The 72nd Annual Cannes Film Festival
During the 72nd Annual Cannes Film Festival, actress Julianne Moore wowed the red carpet in a stunning emerald gown. The strapless Dior dress was simple, hugging Moore’s figure while the long sheer sleeves gave the garment that extra “it” factor.
Moore opted for an easy hairstyle but went over-the-top with her jewelry selection. Choosing bold emerald and diamond earrings, an emerald ring, and a skinny necklace (all from Chopard), the pieces were the perfect fit for the redhead’s gorgeous dress. The entire look was flawless and showcased Moore’s beauty seamlessly.
Emilia Clark At The 2019 Fashion Awards In London
Not many people can pull off a vibrant yellow dress with accented sleeves. Then again, Emilia Clark isn’t most people. The Mother of Dragons attended the 2019 Fashion Awards in London dressed to the nines in a statement Schiaparelli gown. The most dramatic part of the ensemble wasn’t even the color, but the elongated sleeves and cape that were dotted with yellow feathers.
On top of that, the skirt was covered in rhinestones, and the top came with an edgy cut-out. Add on the slicked back up-do and minimalist jewelry, and it’s clear Clark was more than ready to own the Fashion Awards that year.
Charlize Theron During The 76th Annual Academy Awards
The 76th Annual Academy Awards was a huge ceremony for Charlize Theron. Not only did she win the Oscar for Best Lead Actress, but she did so wearing this stunning Gucci gown. Fresh off the plane from a trip to Brazil, the dress shows off Theron’s sun-kissed skin and slim-again figure.
Theron gained 30 pounds for her Oscar-winning role in Monster. But it doesn’t look like she had any trouble getting rid of the extra baggage! The award-winning actress paired the shimmering gown with dangling earrings, a jewel-studded bracelet, and a tiny clutch, bringing the whole look together.
Julia Roberts During The 2016 Cannes Film Festival
During the 2016 Cannes Film Festival screening of Money Monster, Julia Roberts stunned the red carpet in a vintage-inspired Armani Prive gown. The black piece fit Roberts’ frame perfectly, with the cap sleeves and neckline giving the garment a classy look. Roberts decided to go with her signature waves and a bold green-gemmed necklace to accompany the dress. But that wasn’t what had people talking that evening.
Roberts made a stand against the unspoken dress code rule that states women have to wear high heels to the festival. Roberts started off her red carpet walk wearing black peep-toe heels but took them off to climb the infamous red stairs!
Heather Locklear At The 52nd Annual Emmy Awards
Heather Locklear looked like a Greek goddess walking the red carpet at the 52nd Annual Primetime Emmy Awards. The actress went with a simple Richard Tyler dress. The white column gown fit Locklear’s frame like a second skin, giving her an elegant look.
She decided to go with her signature teased hairstyle and neutral makeup with a vibrant lip, bringing more awareness to the dress instead of everything else going on around it. She also opted out of a necklace and wore a chunky bracelet and earrings instead.
Camila Cabello At The 2018 MTV Europe Music Awards
Cuban-American singer Camila Cabello wowed in a red ballgown during the 2018 MTV Music Awards in Europe. The dress was from Australian designer Alex Perry and couldn’t have been a better fit for the award-winning singer. She looked like a princess with the spaghetti strapped gown and chic high ponytail.
She topped the sophisticated look off with a sparkling bracelet and dangling silver hoops from Norman Silverman. Cabello must have been feeling good that night because she ended up winning four awards during the ceremony, including one for Best Song.
Selena Gomez During The 2016 American Music Awards
The American Music Awards red carpet is known for having some over-the-top looks, such as Britney and Justin’s matching denim. But when Selena Gomez stepped onto the carpet in 2016, all eyes and cameras were on her and not on the crazy outfits. The multi-talented star stunned in a simple crimson Prada gown.
Her floor-length dress was perfectly matched with dangling Cartier earrings and a sleek middle-parted low ponytail. The combination was elegant and gave off an old-school movie star feel. Gomez proved that she doesn’t need to go overboard with her style to get attention!
Zoe Saldana At The 87th Annual Academy Awards
The 87th Annual Academy Awards was Zoe Saldana’s first red carpet appearance after giving birth to her twin sons, and she looked fierce. She was beautiful in a form-fitting pale pink Atelier Versace gown that made people enviable of the new mom.
While it’s a sophisticated design, the crisscross on the front of the dress is also perfectly placed to hide any lingering baby bump. Saldana paired the blush gown with a diamond necklace and a few simple rings. Tack on the flawless curly up-do and earth-tone makeup, and the whole look screamed elegance.
Sandra Bullock At The 2015 Minions Premiere
Sandra Bullock lives a pretty low-key lifestyle, but that didn’t stop the stunning brunette from slaying the yellow carpet at the Minions world premiere in London. The actress donned a unique brocade dress designed by Stella McCartney. Bullock rocked the black and silver asymmetrical peplum-style skirt and paisley design.
She decided to go simple with the rest of her look, opting for a simple blowout, light makeup, and ankle-strap heels. A single thin bracelet completed Bullock’s edgy yet elegant yellow carpet look.
Emma Stone At The 75th Venice Film Festival
Emma Stone looked radiant during the 75th Venice Film Festival. The actress wore a customized sheer Louis Vuitton gown. Originally, the gown was a jacket from the resort 2019 collection, but with a few alterations, the designer turned it into a gown for Stone. The fabric is light with beautiful embroidery throughout the top.
The large slit showcases her metallic heels, giving an otherwise sophisticated ensemble a bit of edge. To complete the look, Stone swept her hair back, opting for loose waves to frame her freshly made-up face.