MTV turns 40 this year, and this year’s VMAs red carpet made good on a mission to celebrate as only pop and rock stars with crazy-eyed stylists can. Maximalism, of course, won out. But then, along came Billie Eilish to remind us all that a cozy big jumper is the best invention since grilled cheese. (Actually, make them equal.)
One of the night’s first arrivals, Lil Nas X, makes a good case for the rest of us packing up and going home: how is it going to get better than this crystal pantsuit/skirt combination? (Not to mention the hair.)
Call it the Harry Styles effect: Shawn Mendes wore an all-suit with baggy trousers. Another sign of the troubling return of low-rise jeans: Tinashe hosted the pre-show in a lace-up pair.
Lil Nas X
Delicious red carpet sanity! Some very stylish sanity. For here is Billie Eilish dressing just as one should do—comfortably in slouchy everything, all in black. Big pockets. She will be viewed with such envy by her all her primped and made-up compadres tonight. I bet everyone ends up just wanting to fall asleep on this divine outfit.
Finally, someone located the purple feather cabinet and used it for what it was intended: a hat that will also whoosh right by you! Plus, red gloves! Color blocking and a hat! And she can go straight to the Hello, Dolly! audition afterwards. Thank you, Valentino!
Megan Fox and Machine Gun Kelly
As the young people say, Megan Fox (in Mugler) and Machine Gun Kelly (Dolce & Gabbana) have not come to play. Her: a classic piece of barely there garment brilliance guaranteed to get the tabloids frothing. Him: a glittering red waterfall of a suit, with face jewelry.
The show host arrived in another red leather look by Andreas Kronthaler for Vivienne Westwood: thigh-high socks and lace-up pumps. She layered her corset top with a draped overlay shawl. Layering!
“I can’t wait to show u guys this cute little black dress I’m wearing rn,” the singer tweeted just before the show, in perhaps the understatement of the night. There was nothing subdued about her goth lace pantsuit.
One of the night’s most anticipated performers showed up looking, well, fine, in a cutesy sherbet strapless gown. The Atelier Versace dress was very prom-esque, which makes sense given the fact that Olivia Rodrigo only just graduated high school. Still, if any night was the time to bring the drama, this is it. Where are the feathers?
Let us just say you were going to an awards ceremony, and then leaving on a long trip immediately afterwards. Could you find a dress with compartments attached to it for your stuff? Of course you can, thanks to Alexis Mabille. And if your intentions are more modest, as our colleague Kelly Caminero said: “This is a great dress for sneaking snacks.”
Somebody has been repeat-watching, rewinding, and dreaming about Showgirls, and learning all the right lessons from it. Just watch out for her near any pearls and stairs.
We can retire the all-white trend: Normani perfected it in this ab- and leg-bearing skirt suit by Patryc Japagas.
A little dose of beautifully worn Hollywood glam, courtesy of Valentino. The rapper posted an Instagram story filmed in her limo on the event, toasting a glass of red wine. Cheers, especially to her stylist.
The reigning queen of pop punk returned to her throne in a cut-out plaid suit that revealed a bedazzled bra by Area.
Kim Petras is wearing Richard Quinn, and what is magical about this the mixture of hippy-dippy dance around the fire, and S & M dungeon. Masks are everywhere. Not the pandemic ones. The bend-over-and-enjoy kind. And now you can wear it with daywear. Thanks Kim!
Frankly, why even bother when Cyndi Lauper is there in the room too? Cyndi Lauper is everything. All in black, cool to the last scintilla of her cuticles.
And here we have Ed Sheeran looking very uncomfortable in a Versace blazer. Ed it’s ok, you can just wear a tux next time.
Simone Biles is at the VMAs to introduce Doja Cat. All in white, and a champion.
Flo Milli turned herself into a disco ball in a mirrored mini dress. Who needs lighting design when you have this glowing dress to light the way?
Winnie Harlow coming in hot with that type of outfit you can only wear during breezy early September days: an artfully of-the-shoulder fleece and hot pants.
Today’s kids may not remember the original MTV Moon Man, but Billy Porter is here to give them a history lesson. Here, the Pose star shimmered in a tin foil-ish jumpsuit. Great for conspiracy theorists and fashionistas alike.
Travis Barker and Kourtney Kardashian
Travis Barker and Kourtney Kardashian threw it back to high school yearbook days, and seem to be gunning for Cutest Couple in coordinated all-black outfits. Then they made out on the red carpet because, as they are wont to do.
Proof that there is nothing like a handsome fellow in a great pink suit.