In Hollywood, the red carpet is something that can really help a starlet out. If you’re a new rising star, wearing a great outfit can win you attention and open doors. Wear the wrong one and the same doors will slam in your face. A veteran actress can be expected to carry off a good style but some aren’t as good as others. Yet some actresses can get away with a bad style, because they're weird enough in real life that it manages to work. It goes for music awards as well, although tastes there can be different and wilder styles more tolerated. But when it comes to red carpet events, whether parties, award shows or premieres, the stars can show off styles in dresses that cost more than some cars. A gorgeous lady in a gorgeous outfit is always great and so many of these starlets are able to pull it off.
But others…can’t. For some reason, they choose styles that are utterly horrible in design, color or showing off too much. They make baffling decisions that make you wonder if they even hire consultants (or even friends) who can tell them this is a bad thing. That they decide to wear them for major events is astounding, they really think going out like this is a smart idea. For every starlet who can be a red carpet genius, there’s another who collapses badly under a bad choice. Here are 10 celebrities who always slay on the red carpet and 10 who could use some help.
20 Need Help - Cher
Some will argue as Cher’s wild outfits are part of her entire persona. That may be true but the brutal fact is, some of this stuff is totally insane. At the Oscars in 2000, she came out in a solid blue dress with a jewelled crucifix swinging and noting,
“I am dressed like a grown-up this year. I apologize and promise it will never happen again.”
The woman has worn some of the most outrageous Oscar outfits ever, from a beaded suit and giant Mohawk, to a caramel-coloured beaded outfit with loony hat. She loves black outfits that flaunt her body with a variety of wigs that range from anything normal to looking like she has an animal on her head. Once upon a time, she was a very beautiful lady, but time has not been her friend. Yet she continues to go out in outfits no sane person would dare try. Again, her fans will argue that her wardrobe is what makes her iconic but others can agree this woman might need to tone down the outrageousness now and then.
19 Slays It - Emily Ratajkowski
You’d expect a supermodel to be able to look great. Yet, it’s utterly astounding how Emily Ratajkowski can be utterly sensational on the red carpet. True, she’s had her flaws. At the 2017 Golden Globes, her attempt to ruffle out her lush yellow gown ended with her accidentally flashing photographers. But aside from that, the model’s smooth form lends itself to some of the best red carpet dresses around.
Whether it is something that flows nice and easy, or something more tight, she always manages to make it look stunning. From “suit” styles to long trails, any color manages to work on her. Emily really goes out for things like the Met Gala and other events and shows how well she can rock any outfit. Designers flock to her in hopes she wears their creations and gives them some good fame but you can just throw a garbage sack on this woman and she’ll make it look spectacular.
18 Need Help - Madonna
From the beginning, Madonna had a style all her own. In the 1980s, her love for wild outfits fit her character before rising up in the ‘90s with a more intense style. Since then, Madonna has gone out of her way to look majorly wild on the red carpet…even when she shouldn’t. The brutal fact is the woman is about to hit 60 but continues to act like she’s 25. Her outfits thus range from what looked like a matador costume to dresses showcasing a bizarre mix of patterns and colors.
She really likes the whole “peek-a-boo” motif despite that many feel that she should tone down her outfits since she's an older woman.
Even “dressing down,” she goes for suits that look way too obtrusive and get eyes on her for the wrong reasons. True, she’s always been a maverick with fashion and that served her well when she was so amazingly beautiful but age doesn’t make it easier to pull the outfits off and it’s time this girl got some new Material.
17 Slays It - Jennifer Lopez
This is a woman who has proven herself to be timeless. She may be pushing 50 but Jennifer Lopez looks as amazing as she did when she broke out in the late 1990s. For two decades, she has showcased an amazing red carpet style that never ceases to amaze.
Obviously, one of her most famous was the 2001 Grammy dress, the Versace with a plunging neckline that had jaws dropping.
But any outfit Lopez wears is terrific, flaunting those famous curves and makes her look stunning. She can be daring in outfits yet somehow still looks elegant and spectacular. It doesn’t matter if it’s for a music show, a movie premiere or a TV event, nothing can stop Lopez from drawing attention and it’s no wonder stylists fall over themselves trying to come up with great outfits for her. No matter her age, Jenny From the Block is one of the best dressed in Hollywood and proves it every time she hits the red carpet.
16 Needs Help - Bella Thorne
On her Freeform TV series Famous in Love, Bella Throne plays a young actress suddenly thrust into fame. Part of that involves wearing some gorgeous outfits from lush dresses to great casual clothing. Too bad Thorne doesn’t use that same style in real life. If she sticks to a rather simple outfit, she can look great. Sadly, Thorne too often goes for some too daring stuff.
There’s also her tendency to wear truly outrageous outfits flaunting her belly and stuff more suited for a beach party than a prominent event. Not helping is how Throne seems to change her hair color on a weekly basis from red to blonde to pink or blue. In fact, it’s clear how in the last couple of years, Thorne has let go of a nice style in exchange for these wilder looks. They may get attention but for the wrong reasons as this is a lady who can glam it up nicely if she tries. Hopefully she adjusts and maybe gets her Famous wardrobe folks to give her some tips.
15 Slays It - Jessica Chastain
Her very presence is a throwback to classic Hollywood. Jessica Chastain has been a great starlet, an Oscar nominee about to jump into blockbusters with X-Men Dark Phoenix. The stunning redhead has won hails as one of the absolute best you can possibly see on any red carpet event. She prefers light gowns that often have her shoulders bare and adores plunging necklines and backs.
Any color will do, as Chastain can make the tones fit her wonderfully, and from that she turns the carpet into her own runway.
Her bright smile also helps, as if knowing the effect she has on onlookers. It’s truly remarkable how impossible it is to find a red carpet picture where Chastain looks anything less than utterly spectacular and it’s no wonder she tops the “best dressed” lists for any occasion. Even if she’s not a nominee, when Chastain shows up at an awards show, she’s a winner.
14 Needs Help - Britney Spears
She’s had her ups and downs to be sure. Britney Spears broke out as one of the best of the “bubblegum pop” ladies of the late 1990s. She then transformed into a symbol with her more revealing videos. But she’s had problems of weight, shaving her head and infamous breakdowns.
Too often, Spears’ red carpet style seems to showcase her “trailer park” roots.
Even when she glams up, Spears can go too far with outfits flaunting skin and some rather bad patterns. It’s not helped by how her low periods showcased her picking some really bad outfits and thinking she needs to push a wilder style too much. In the last couple of years, Spears has sobered herself up and has done well with her run in Las Vegas. This means some better outfits although she still has the tendency to wear stuff way too tight on her body. It’s too bad one of the most beautiful women has slumped so badly in terms of fashion.
13 Slays It - Blake Lively
For six seasons on the hit show Gossip Girl, Blake Lively wore a fantastic bevy of stylish outfits for her role as Serena. It looks like that rubbed off on her big time as the actress has become a red carpet darling for her fantastic outfits.
With her long lush legs, gorgeous blonde hair and flawless features, Lively is a wonderful sight. Her outfits can often be a throwback to 1940s glamour in their design with their long trails.
She can be daring with zebra-styled dresses and sleeker suit styles but it always works. She also rocked being pregnant on the red carpet and looking just as glamorous. Whether in New York, Cannes, the Oscars or more, Lively is capable of being the best looking lady on any red carpet despite how her movie career is hardly A-list. But when she gets before photographers, the gossip on how to get her style goes wild.
12 Needs Help - Rose McGowan
Rose McGowan is always remembered for one of the most infamous red carpet dresses of all time. At the 1998 MTV Video Music Awards, McGowan came out with then boyfriend Marilyn Manson in an outfit that dropped jaws. It was basically a transparent sheet with chains, allowing full view of pretty much everything.
Today, it is more remembered than any of her acting roles. While she’s been more dressed since, McGowan still has a bad style for many occasions. Indeed, she seems to go overboard with massive trails and gowns that look like too much and some bad choices in colors and patterns. It’s not helped by how McGowan needed to go to the hospital after a car accident and altered her lovely looks. Lately, the outspoken feminist has taken to shaving her head and wearing leather-styled outfits which don’t look as well. It may be better than her former outfits but McGowan’s red carpet style is still rather rough.
11 Slays It - Emma Stone
Something about this woman just makes it nearly impossible for her to wear something terrible. Her flawless beauty and lush eyes make it easy for Emma Stone to command attention and her stylists do wonders for her. Her hair can shift from blonde to red but either way, she always has a color of dress that goes with it. She prefers solid outfits, sleek dresses that flow over her thin body, but occasionally something with a slit to show off her nice legs.
When she won the Oscar in 2017, she was a vision in a fantastic shimmering white-gold dress that was perfect for holding that statue. Dark colors seem to suit her well like red or black yet almost any tone is amazing when Stone wears it. She even rocks a “casual suit” style of outfit for after parties and such. Throw in that nice smirk and Stone is a vision on the red carpet better than any of the characters she’s played on film.
10 Needs Help - Miley Cyrus
It’s still astounding to see how much this lady changed. When she was Hannah Montana, Miley Cyrus stuck to kid-friendly outfits, nice and fun and while not really sensational, but at least some good style.
But when she altered her entire image to the infamously adult persona, her red carpet outfits took a turn for the bizarre.
Sometimes, she would come out in what amounted to barely tape over her body and flaunting far too much skin. Other times were a mismatch of colors and styles, baring her belly, showing off way too much back and sometimes looking like she was going to a costume party. Not helping was her fondness for insanely wild hair and an overabundance of makeup, not to mention sticking her tongue out constantly. Thankfully, Cyrus has toned herself down in the last year, her outfits a bit better but still prone to crazy stuff. She even bragged she was “quitting” the red carpet but showed up at the 2018 Grammys in a sleek black outfit, a bit better than usual but touches of slits about. It’s probably best she stay away as her style was a crazy one.
9 Slays It - Jennifer Lawrence
A big part of The Hunger Games is when Katniss goes to the Capitol and has to adjust to suddenly being put into gorgeous dresses and gowns. She clearly doesn’t get how amazing she looks, thinking this is horrible. In a way, Jennifer Lawrence can relate to her character as she was just another Hollywood face before those movies made her an A-lister.
She first got attention at the 2011 Oscars in a stunning form-fitting red dress that showed her curves nicely. Since then, Lawrence has made the red carpet a second home and always looks great on it.
The most famous is her billowing white dress when she won Best Actress in 2013 and fell on the steps on her way to the stage.
Whether it’s a huge dress or something simpler, Lawrence is able to carry any design well. Sure, she has the odd dud now and then but for the most part, she is able to make any color work wonderfully on her with her hair to match (no matter its color or length). So like Katniss, Lawrence slays wherever she goes.
8 Needs Help - Ariel Winter
When Modern Family began, Ariel Winter was just a teenager and so her early red carpet appearances at the Emmys and other awards were okay. Puberty hit Winter majorly, to the point where her curves were actually giving her back problems. Since then, Winter has had a rather unique style for the red carpet, one that comes off a bit too much. She can glam it up now and then and look great but sadly, she seems to rely on outfits that draw way too much attention to her.
An infamous bit is when the cast showed up for a TV meeting, the rest in casual clothes but Winter decked out like she was hitting the Cannes Film Festival. Her outfits show way too much skin and too often look like they’re close to bursting open. Throw in the terrible choice of patterns and colors (not to mention every now and then showing up like someone from a trailer park) and Winter could really use more advice on her outfits.
7 Slays It - Anne Hathaway
At first, Anne Hathaway’s red carpet style was a bit rough. She was young, after all, elevated to stardom by The Princess Diaries and mostly kid-themed fare. But as Hathaway has matured, so has her style, embracing her beauty and surprising us with her choices.
Her thin form is good for her outfits, picking colors and styles that are sleek and neat, with her dark hair lending itself to some nice images.
Her bright smile is beautiful, and she has blossomed into a lovely lady. Even when pregnant, Hathaway showed off beautifully on the red carpet in outfits that made her look terrific and glamorous. The woman is a fantastic star and it thus makes sense that for the upcoming Ocean’s Eight, she’s an actress rocking designer gowns at the Met Ball as part of a heist. Whether it’s in a movie or in real life, Hathaway has proven she really is a red carpet princess.
6 Needs Help - Lindsay Lohan
She sadly stands as one of the biggest examples of a once-promising actress whose life and career came apart. Lindsay Lohan broke out as a child actress and then teen starlet with hits like Mean Girls and it looked like a huge career was ahead of her. Then came her fall with addictions, arrests and more, and she turned into an absolute joke. Not helping is Lohan’s style, at first okay but it seemed to come apart with everything else in her life.
She can glam it up now and then and look surprisingly great. Sadly, those are few and far between as often, her style can be a terrible choice of outfits and patterns, flaunting too much skin and more. She often will have an outfit that for the most part looks good but then a horrible alteration that ruins it (like huge fishnets under an elegant dress). Just like everything else in her life, Lohan's fashion sense has gone off the rails.
5 Slays It - Penelope Cruz
The fact that she’s one of the most beautiful women on the planet sure helps her outfits. Penelope Cruz remains an incredible stunner, the Spanish actress having a beauty that is timeless, in a way that few others can match. It’s served her well in her Oscar-winning career, her roles show off her beauty but always remain intellectual. That thick accent adds more allure, and it is no wonder why every dress designer in Hollywood would be more than willing to throw their dresses at her.
Cruz is proud of her body and it lends itself well to some great dresses that always stun on the red carpet. It doesn’t matter if it’s a movie premiere or a major award ceremony, Cruz never lacks for terrific camera presence. Throw in that million-watt smile and Cruz is a lock for any “best dressed on the red carpet” list for any event.
4 Needs Help - Katy Perry
Everyone knows Katy Perry has her own unique style for her concerts. The woman excels in a variety of costumes with various nutty bits from chest cones to wig changes. But on the red carpet, Perry’s style doesn’t exactly tend to win folks over. Her outfits are one thing for the stage but quite another for a big event like the Grammy or the odd movie premiere.
Though there are times where she can be all glam, those are few and far between as Perry seems more about grabbing attention with outfits that are way too loud.
Indeed, it looks like in the last few years, she’s let go of “glam” for more risqué and outrageous outfits, outfits that resemble walking candy canes or other bits. Indeed, you can clearly see a change between her rather nice gowns and more outrageous stuff in the last year or two.
3 Slays It - Lupita Nyong’o
She is in the unique club of actresses to win an Oscar for their very first role. But from the start, Lupita Nyong’o has shown a red carpet style that puts many veterans to shame. Her looks help, the gorgeous lady whose dark skin lends itself well to various colors. A major highlight was the lush light blue dress she wore when she won the Oscar, the long trail perfect to twirl in while she celebrated with her award. But Lupita can show in almost any color, utterly fantastic and hailed for her great style.
That includes walking carpets for big movies such as Black Panther, where she showed off in a stunning purple gown, looking like royalty.
Lupita can never be found in any horrible outfit which is lowkey ironic that a woman who came to fame wearing rags in 12 Years a Slave has become a queen of the Hollywood red carpet scene.
2 Needs Help - Helena Bonham Carter
For a lady who’s been so stylish in movies and a veteran actress, you’d think she’d have mastered red carpet style by now. Sadly, Helena Bonham Carter too often wears outfits that make her Bellatrix Lestrange character look sane. Huge bulky boots, sheer tops, patchwork quilts, the works, Carter just uses it all. One of her wildest has to be when she went to a tea at Buckingham Palace in a plaid top and skirt, various necklaces and a top hat.
The 2011 Oscars had her looking somewhat normal in a black dress…until she pulled up the skirt to show a British flag taped to her ankle.
Her hair is always a mess, and she always looks terrible in whatever she wears. It's actually a shame, because we've seen her looking pretty decent in some films. It’s amazing that with so much time on red carpets, the actress looks more of a mess than a social misfit at the prom and if anyone desperately need a style consultant, it’s her.
1 Slays It - Charlize Theron
It’s a bit ironic that Charlize Theron came to fame with roles that usually had her doffing it all on screen, because her red carpet style is absolutely amazing. The actress first wowed at the 2000 Oscars in a lovely orange gown to show her nice beauty off. She has kept it up for years since, always looking absolutely fabulous on any red carpet event from Oscars to the Met Gala and others.
Her hair color has shifted from its usual blonde to jet black or even a bald head but Theron never ceases to look astounding in any outfit. She is absolutely terrific with her lush style, wowing fans constantly, including on the carpet at movie premieres. It’s almost impossible to find a terrible outfit for Theron as no matter if it’s a drama, comedy or action flick, the woman brings it to the carpet big time and shines better than gals half her age.