The Video Music Awards are happening this Sunday, and it’s the kind of awards show at which style memories are made. It’s typically one of those red carpets where anything goes and, as such, stars feel a little more liberty to take risks. Sometimes it’s awesome and…sometimes it involves raw meat.
Back in 1998, Gwen Stefani was in the middle of her No Doubt heyday and her funky style was everything. She eschewed the dress in favor of a fuzzy triangle bikini top because, why not?
Also in 1998: Rose McGowan walked the carpet with beau Marilyn Manson in a dress that was hardly a dress. Skinny chains gave her some coverage, but it was mostly all skin and G-string.
Compared with Miss McGowan, Lil’ Kim’s infamous purple pastie felt like a lot of outfit. The sparkly jumpsuit would have been attention-grabbing enough on its own, but add in that extra skin and wowzee.
In 2000, Jennifer Lopez attended the awards show with P. Diddy in a combo of a white crop top, jeans, and a bandanna that really showed her style circa the early aughts.
Before Beyonce was Beyonce, she was on the scene with Destiny’s Child. The trio attended red carpet events in a lot of matching outfits, including the orange and blue looks they rocked at the 2001 VMAs.
When Britney Spears walked the red carpet in this Madonna-inspired outfit back in 2003, it might not have totally registered as being major. It wasn’t until her performance later—and the three-way lip-lock with Christina Aguilera and Madge—that it really became iconic.
Cher showed up at the VMAs in 2010 and brought her signature out-there style along with her. In place of a crazy gown, she wore a sheer bodysuit covered in crystals and topped with a tough leather jacket.
But try as Cher might, there was no way she could’ve eclipsed Lady Gaga in all her raw meat, erm, glory?
The big celebrity news of the 2011 ceremony was the extra curve that Beyonce was rocking. During her performance onstage, the singer slid her hand over her belly to announce, yup, there was an heir coming. You could see it in her red Lanvin gown too.
For last year’s red carpet, Katy Perry did an homage to Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake with a denim Versace dress she matched to her date.