The best and worst of the 2023 Met Gala

There were hits, there were misses, there were Bollywood stars — check out our roundup of one of the biggest nights in fashion.
02 May, 2023

It’s that time of the year when the fashion world gathers in New York City for the annual Met Gala, aka fashion’s biggest night out. This year, the theme was “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty” — an ode to the late fashion icon Karl Lagerfeld.

We were all hooked to our phones late into the night to see what our favourite stars wore but this year, not many shone. A curious combination of the rather sedate theme and an overall lack of creativity left us wondering why fashion’s best was so mediocre this year.

We’ve curated a list of the looks that we loved, whose looks we were looking forward to, the very few quirky looks and some that just stood out.

Best looks

Cardi B

 Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

 Photo: Cardi B/ Instagram
Photo: Cardi B/ Instagram

The rapper has made it to the best dressed list several times at the Met Gala. Her looks are always a must-see and this year was no different. The ‘I Like It’ singer gave us two gorgeous looks and both gowns stood out for very different reasons. The black was very on theme — it was a classic (ish), classy Chanel- inspired look — but the pink was va-va-voom.

Jenna Ortega

Jenna Ortega’s take on the theme reminded us of her character Wednesday Addams and we loved it. The goth-inflected attire paid homage to a number of Lagerfeld’s design signatures without being too much or too boring.

Anne Hathaway

 Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

The Devil Wears Prada star looked breathtaking as ever in a strapless dress held in place with some strategically placed safety pins by Versace with some preppy hair and makeup. Hathaway, who is the new face of the Italian fashion house, said in a red carpet interview with Vogue, “It was meant to be a marriage between Versace and Chanel.”

Sara Choi

 Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

This was a jaw-dropping look by the drift racer — an amalgamation of a Lagerfeld suit with camp and perfect for the red carpet. We loved the effort of making it look like both a suit and a gown. Her look should be under the dictionary for taking something and making it fashion.

Anok Yai

The model turned heads with her astonishing gold and silver dress, which stood out amid the sea of black and white and boring. Her luminous skin and sparkling brown eyewear complemented the look and we were absolutely mesmerised by it.


The Bad Gal ruled the red carpet as always with one of the most dramatic dresses of the night. She wore a stunning bridal ensemble by Valentino paired with Cartier jewels.

After a dramatic entrance, she removed her cape revealing a matching white dress that highlighted her baby bump. Don’t miss her white sunglasses with false eyelashes glued on — dramatic as always.

Looks we were looking forward to but fell flat

Alia Bhatt

The Indian actor’s fans got excited when it was announced that Bhatt would be attending the grand fashion event this year, but her look was a bit too simple for us. Don’t get us wrong — she wore a white gown by Prabal Gurung, which was inspired by supermodel Claudia Schiffer’s 1992 Chanel bridal look.

The actor said she has always been “fascinated by the iconic Chanel brides” but that fascination didn’t translate in her MET debut. The dress was great but her makeup and hair were boring with a capital B. We were hoping for something different from Bhatt’s usual, rather safe, looks.

The Kardashian-Jenners

 Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

 Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

The Kardashian-Jenners are always head turners at the Met Gala red carpet, but this time it was a major miss. With all their former dramatic looks, these ones looked rather boring and, dare we say, lame. Their makeup didn’t do them any favours either.

Priyanka Chopra Jonas

We were absolutely shocked to see the Citadel actor opting for such a dull and boring look this time. Chopra is known for her over-the-top red carpet looks but this time she chose a simple monotonous black gown paired with some of the weirdest hair we’ve seen.

Where’s the drama? Where’s the colour? Where’s the Priyanka?

Gigi Hadid

The model opted for an all-black look, with a strapless corset top and a low-rise black skirt. While we didn’t hate her look, it didn’t impress either. We were definitely expecting more colour and quirkiness from the young model, given some of her past looks.

Jennifer Lopez

Where there’s J-Lo, there’s drama but this year, the drama didn’t work. We expected a jaw-dropping moment from the singer, who was returning to Met Gala red carpet after two years, but her outfit was pretty bleh. We liked her hat which was like something a rich young widow would wear to her elderly husband’s funeral but the rest of it was pretty standard.

The REAL Met looks

Now we move on to the REAL Met looks. We know the Met is all about campy drama and these stars brought it.

Lil Nas X

 Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

Can we talk camp without mentioning Lil Nas X? Celebrities, take notes from the Grammy winner as he knew how to turn heads. We love the effort to create this eye-catching look which somehow reminds of us sparkly sleep paralysis demon. Love that for him.

Doja Cat

 Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

This look was purr-fect. We have to give to the rapper for choosing something unique and SUPER on trend — Lagerfeld loved his cat to bits — rather than imitating the same old suits and gowns everyone else wore.

Bonus points to her for really staying in character and giving an interview entirely in meows.


 Photo: Tems’ Instagram
Photo: Tems’ Instagram

Now THIS is how you wear headgear to the Met Gala! We love how the musician incorporated some fun into her black and white corset gown.

Jared Leto

This was a moment, as Jared Leto always is. The singer-actor always chooses rather, ahem, distinctive looks for the red carpet and this time was no different. Doja may have turned kitty for the red carpet but Jared Leto took it a step further and wore a full costume of a cat. While everybody was paying tribute to the designer, the actor chose to make his outfit an ode to the late designer’s famous feline companion.

It was both cute and creepy — just what we expect from Leto and the Met Gala.

Elle Fanning

The Great and The Girl from Plainville actor decided to go with a bridal gown because why not? Her woodland take on a Chanel bride was inspired and very Met Gala, in our opinion.

Stars who stood out

Salma Hayek

 Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

In a sea of black, white and pale colours, Salma Hayek stole the show in red. We’re not sure we actually like her dress but it certainly was eye-catching and we guess that’s the point of the Met Gala.

Viola Davis

Dramatic, feathered and hot pink, Davis’ Valentino gown made her standout for sure. Leave the monochromatic looks at home and go for some drama!

Jeremy Pope

 Photo: AFP
Photo: AFP

The actor brought drama to the red carpet with a 30-foot cape with Lagerfeld’s face on it and we loved it. Is it gorgeous? No. Is it main character energy? Yes.

Alton Mason

Model Alton Mason, who was the first Black man to walk for Chanel, knew how to stand out on the red carpet. His quirky take on a Chanel bride from Karl Lagerfeld couture had us nodding our heads — THIS is what we expect from the Met Gala.

PS: You’ll notice very few men on our list — it’s because most of them were boring.