Beyond beautiful. The stars stepped out to the 2023 Met Gala for fashion’s biggest night on May 1 and the over-the-top makeup and hair looks were just as memorable as the elaborate ensembles.
Indeed, the first Monday in May is here and luminaries from film, television, music, the model world, sports, art and culture mingled to benefit the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute. Attendees dressed to impress while honoring late designer Karl Lagerfeld.
This year’s theme reflects the Costume Institute’s spring exhibition, which opens to members the day after the gala and to the public on May 5: “Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty.” The show pays homage to the German fashion icon’s body of work, most notably his devotion to clean lines and simple elegance with a wink in his collections for Chanel, Fendi, Chloe, Balmain, Patou and of course his eponymous line from the 1950s until his death in 2019.
Perhaps best known for his tenure at Chanel, where he held the design reins since 1983, the fashion juggernaut was integral in choosing the French fashion house’s celebrity spokesmodels, including Nicole Kidman as the face of Chanel No.5 fragrance in 2004 and Kristen Stewart to front the Chanel Gabrielle scent in 2017.
Co-chairs of this year’s event include actors Michaela Coel and Penelope Cruz, tennis great Roger Federer, singing sensation Dua Lipa and of course Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, who is integral in pairing designers with celebrity attendees for the ultimate red carpet reveals.
While the stars are quite familiar with the glitter and glamour of big-nights-out in front of the cameras, the annual Met Gala is perhaps the most notable for truly over-the-top sartorial spectacles, including intricate hair and makeup moments.
Standouts this year Emily Ratajkowski in Tory Burch with a blingy pattern inspired by the quilting on Chanel handbags, Kidman dressed in the exact blush gown she wore in her 2004 Chanel No.5 campaign and, of course, Penelope Cruz wearing an archival Chanel dress reminiscent of Lagerfeld’s beloved “Couture Bride,” the model who closed every show and signaled his latest muse.
While past Met Gala dress codes invited wild interpretations when it came to beauty (see: Camp: Notes on Fashion and Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination), this year’s theme is a bit more straightforward, inviting tons of black and white, bows and chains.
The biggest hair trend of the night was lengthy locks. Cascading curls on Rita Ora, center-parted sleek below-the-bottom glass hair, wet-look strands on Kidman and thigh-length braids on Ariana DeBose underscored the trend
As for makeup, the eyes had it. Exaggerated, bold brows (seen on EmRata and Wintour‘s daughter Bee Shaffer) and kohl-rimmed eyes were everywhere. All manner of beige lips (like the pouts on Quinta Brunsen and Cruz) looked incredibly chic and also had a moment.
Scroll through to see every wild, over-the-top look on the 2023 Met Gala red carpet!