The most controversial Met Gala dresses of all time

The Met Gala is renowned for its ability to encourage even the most modest celebrities to take a sartorial risk. 

For every handful of tasteful dresses, there’s always one that raises an eyebrow. Or, in Rihanna’s case, creates a social media meme sensation. 

The theme of the 2019 Met Gala, which takes place on Monday, May 6, is Camp: Notes on Fashion and will be co-hosted by Harry Styles, Lady Gaga and Serena Williams. 

As we prepare for another year of jaw-dropping ensembles to hit the red carpet, here’s a look back at the most memorable (and controversial outfits to date):

Rihanna, 2018

Rihanna arrives for the 2018 Met Gala (AFP/Getty Images)

Rihanna always serves up show-stopping looks at the Met Gala, however her 2018 offering was by far the most controversial to date.

The singer arrived at the Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination themed event dressed as a high fashion pope – and it did not go down well with everyone. The Maison Margiela design, which featured a highly embellished dress, coat and papal headdress, sparked backlash from some Catholics, with many labelling the outfit “disgusting” and “offensive”.

Jaden Smith, 2017 

Known for his boundary-breaking, gender fluid style, Will and Jada Smith’s son, Jaden, is no stranger to turning heads on the red carpet. 

In 2017, though, he raised even more eyebrows than usual by taking a lock of his own hair as his date.  An avant-garde accessory even by his standards.

Cara Delevingne, 2017 

What goes nicely with a Chanel suit? Silver hair, of course. 

In 2017 Cara exuded futuristic vibes in a metallic embellished suit, which was a statement in itself.

But Cara, who had recently shaved her head, decided she also wanted her hair (or lack of) to do all the talking, by transforming her scalp with silver paint.  

Bella Hadid, 2017

Know you’re going to run into your ex and his new girlfriend? You make sure you look fabulous.

This was the exact conundrum Bella Hadid found herself in when she attended the Met Gala along with her ex The Weeknd and his then-girlfriend, Selena Gomez.

With a little helping hand from Alexander Wang, Bella managed to slip into a figure-hugging bodysuit and shut down the red carpet with her added attitude. 

Priyanka Chopra, 2017 

“Inspector Gadget has arrived” was the meme doing the rounds on Twitter when Priyanka Chopra hit the red carpet in 2017.

The Ralph Lauren creation, which was half-trench coat, half-ball gown, definitely was a sight to behold.

Not to mention, it took a handful of people to hoist the train up the stairs. 

Rihanna, 2015

Arguably the most iconic look of all time was the Guo Pei masterpiece Rihanna wore in 2015.

To this day the fluffy canary yellow creation remains one of the biggest talking points in Met Gala history, and rightly so. 

From a fried egg to a pizza base, an omelette to Big Bird, the Internet was flooded with memes of Rihanna’s look – and she managed to work each and every one of them. 

Madonna, 2016 

Having spent years wearing outrageous outfits and courting controversy, Madonna’s sheer Givenchy outfit at the 2016 Met Gala was business as usual for the megastar.

The corset, complete with cape and lace-up boots, gave onlookers an added surprise when Madge turned around to reveal her bare bottom covered in dainty lace. 

Kim Kardashian, 2013

Another star who is no stranger to splitting opinion is Kim Kardashian, whose 2013 Met Gala gown by Riccardo Tisci, with attached gloves, was frequently likened to a sofa.

Love or hate it, you have to admit it’s one hell of a maternity look.

Click through the gallery above to see many more of the most memorable Met Gala dresses.


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