All of Zendaya’s Met Gala Looks


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In anticipation of the star’s rumoured return to the esteemed event, we’re documenting each of her iconic Met ensembles.

Do you hear that? It’s the sound of nature healing: Zendaya is coming back to the Met Gala. The fashion force has not graced the steps of The Metropolitan Museum of Art on the first Monday of May since 2019 — and we’ve been starved for Zendaya Met Gala looks ever since.

It feels wrong, but it’s true. The past few Mets have been utterly Zendaya-less. It started in 2020, which was a no-go for obvious pandemic reasons. In 2021 and 2022, the star skipped out because of “work” obligations. (Sam Levinson, I blame you.) 2023 gave us many a surprise appearance — including Jared Leto’s life-sized cat costume and an undeniably photogenic roach — but still no Zendaya.

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Luckily, the star’s attendance this year is basically a given. As a co-chair alongside Jennifer Lopez, Chris Hemsworth and Bad Bunny, her consequential role at the event involves her being physically present. Vogue’s simulated group chat conversation confirmed it!

What will that look like, you ask? She and her legendary stylist Law Roach are currently on a sartorial hot streak with a slew of tennis-themed Challengers looks. So this means they’ll likely be serving big time (get it?) for fashion’s biggest night. (Roach has even teased the idea of putting Zendaya in a life-size tennis ball, which would definitely be a choice.)

While we prepare for her take on the 2024 “Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion” theme, we’re looking back at all the Zendaya Met Gala looks (with the event’s corresponding dress codes) over the years.

2015: “China: Through the Looking Glass”

Zendaya Met Gala Looks: 2015
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A star is born! For her first Met, Zendaya turned heads in an opulent celestial costume by Fausto Puglisi. The sculptural red mini-dress featured sun adornments and a long lavish train. In true mid-2010s fashion, it was accessorized with an unnecessary belt and spiky jewellery.

Not only did this look exude ethereal energy, but it laid the groundwork for her red carpet royalty status.

2016: “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology”

Zendaya Met Gala Looks: 2016
Photography by Getty Images

We, as a society, don’t talk about this Zendaya Met Gala moment enough. The Indie-sleaze smudgy eyeshadow! The extremely-risky-but-well-executed bowl cut! The opulent off-the-shoulder Michael Kors gown!

Together, her intricately embellished metallic dress with her symmetrical beauty look captured the machine-related musings of that year’s event.

2017: “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons: Art of the In-Between”

Zendaya Met Gala Looks: 2017
Photography by Getty Images

When Rihanna posts about your look, you know you’ve done good. At the 2017 Met, Zendaya tapped Dolce & Gabbana for a maximalist dress with a tropical parrot print. The over-the-top ballgown was lined in vermillion, making her stand out as a true slice of radiance on the red carpet.

Despite having spent the night before in the ER, she looked fresh as a daisy, sporting a peachy orange lip and a gorgeous afro. Sure, it might not have been exactly in line with the avant-garde theme, but sometimes a great look means breaking the rules. Sacrifices!

2018: “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination”

Zendaya Met Gala Looks: 2018
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Some remember 2018 as the year of the royal wedding. I think of it as the year Zendaya cosplayed Joan of Arc. Keeping with the ball’s theme of religion-meets-fashion, Zendaya embodied the fearless French warrior and Roman Catholic Saint in a powerful Versace chainmail look. She completed the ensemble with dewy glam and a wavy red bob.

At the after-party, new levels of range were reached, with her changing into a vibrant harlequin skirt and an asymmetrical white top.

2019: “Camp: Notes on Fashion”

Zendaya Met Gala Looks: 2019
Photography by Getty Images

At the 2019 Met Gala, Zendaya donned one of her most famous red carpet looks ever. The “camp” theme encouraged guests to embrace out-of-the box styling via theatricality, exaggeration and irony. By becoming a princess, the star delivered.

Wearing a Cinderella gown by Tommy Hilfiger, she was joined by Roach, who orchestrated a mesmerizing transformation that caused her dress to light up. Later, the stylist explained that this moment was a metaphor for her graduating from Disney-star status to a grown-up career stage.

Zendaya Met Gala Looks: 2019 after-party
Photography by Getty Images

After leaving her glass heel behind on the carpet, she slipped into a chic lilac gown inside the event. As a result, a new era for the star was indeed established.

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