Cher. Prince. Beyonce. Rihanna. It’s not surprising that some of history’s most singular one-named greats have also happened to be style icons. This is certainly true of Zendaya, the 25-year-old multi-hyphenate star who, in just a few years, has catapulted to the upper echelons of Hollywood, headlining both blockbuster films (the Spider Man series, dune) and sensational TV (Euphoriawhich earned her an Emmy), and proven herself to be red carpet gold in the process.
Thanks to her prolific collaboration with stylist and “Image Architect” Law Roach, Zendaya has consistently delivered sartorial excellence, becoming as known for her fashion risk-taking as for her masterful 21st-century homages to legendary red carpet moments past. Take her tribute to Sharon Stone’s 1998 Oscars ensemble at Sunday night’s Academy Awards, channeling the white shirt and satin skirt combo in custom Valentino Haute Couture and layers of Bulgari diamonds. Or her nod to Cher at last year’s ceremony, for which Zendaya showed up resplendent in lemon yellow Valentino. She also really knows how to follow a theme. See: her looks on the Spider Man: No Way Home press tour (a Valentino gown embroidered with spider webs for the LA premiere, an Alexander McQueen outfit embellished with crystal webs for London). or her dune tour wardrobe, which included a sci-fi Balmain number for the Venice Film Festival and a futuristic draped Rick Owens gown for the UK screening.
Much more is surely to come. Until then, a brief accounting of Zendaya’s best red carpet moments to date, below.
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For the Vanity Fair Oscars party following the 94th Academy Awards Sunday night in LA, Zendaya wore a sleek Sportmax suit and accessorized with a Bulgari brooch and rings.
Paying homage to Sharon Stone’s iconic 1998 Oscars look, the dune star wore head-to-toe Valentino Haute Couture for the 2022 Oscars, with stacks of Bulgari Serpenti Viper bangles lining her wrists (plus the matching necklace).
The actress was a vision in pink at Valentino’s Fall/Winter 2022 show during Paris Fashion Week earlier this month.
For the premiere of the second season of HBOs Euphoria earlier this year, its star chose vintage Valentino (from 1992) for the occasion.
Another Valentino number, this time a custom gown featuring a spray of spider webs that the actress wore to the LA premiere of Spider Man: No Way Home.
Another Spider Maninspired look—crystal-embellished Alexander McQueen, plus diamond spiderweb earrings—for a London photocall.
The vintage (circa 2000) Roberto Cavalli gown that Zendaya wore to the Ballon d’Or ceremony in Paris in November was also a subtle nod to the Spider Man franchise, its gilded skeleton-like back detail reminiscent of Spider Man villain dr. Octopus.
At the 2021 CFDA Awards Zendaya became the youngest ever recipient of the Fashion Icon award. For the momentous occasion she wore Vera Wang Haute Couture and—what else?—Bulgari diamonds.
For the UK screening of the sci-fi epic dunethe actress was appropriately attired in futuristic Rick Owens.
for dune‘s Venice Film Festival premiere last September, Zendaya accessorized her Balmain look with a 93-carat emerald and a diamond Bulgari High Jewelry Serpenti necklace.
To pay homage to Cher at last year’s Academy Awards, Zendaya wore a cut-out yellow Valentino and $6 million worth of Bulgari jewels.
for Essence‘s Black Women in Hollywood Awards in 2021, she opted for another high fashion throwback, a vintage YSL look from the maison’s 1982 Haute Couture collection.
For a Bulgari event in 2020, Zendaya, a brand ambassador, wore the maison’s jewels with her Rahul Mishra outfit.
For the 2020 Critics’ Choice Awards, Zendaya wore a fuschia Tom Ford with a custom-made breastplate.
For GQ’s 2019 Men of the Year Awards in Sydney, the actress opted for a sleek tailored white ensemble by Mônot.
In Christopher Esber at the 2019 People’s Choice Awards.
Zendaya’s Vera Wang look for the 2019 Emmy Awards was another historical Hollywood reference, this time Uma Thurman’s turn as Poison Ivy in 1997’s Batman & Robin.
At the Fendi Couture Fall 2019 show in Rome.
Zendaya took cues from Spider-Man’s suit for the 2019 premiere of Spider-Man: Far From Home. Reversion? Sequined Armani Private.
For an LA cocktail party celebrating the launch of jewelry brand Âme in December 2018, Zendaya wore a frothy feathered frock from Marc Jacobs’s Spring/Summer 2019 collection.
In Carolina Herrera at the 2018 MTV Movie Awards.
Zendaya’s masterful interpretation of the Met Gala’s 2018 theme “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination”? To attend as a Versace-clad Joan of Arc.
The actress was a modern-day Audrey Hepburn in Dice Kayek Couture for a Tiffany’s event in 2018.
For the 90th Academy Awards in 2018, the actress wore Giambattista Valli Couture.
In Fatima Danielsson at a Tiffany x British Vogue event in 2018.
For the 2017 premiere of The Greatest ShowmanZendaya wore a Moschino butterfly gown.
For her Schiaparelli-clad look at the 2017 InStyle Awards, Zendaya looked to her own family, tweeting an image of the aunts who inspired her hairstyle.
In Ralph & Russo at the brand’s Paris Haute Couture show in 2017.
Later that evening for Ralph & Russo’s Beasts & Beauties ball, Zendaya wore a beaded gown and cape (plus Chopard jewels).
Zendaya, in Ralph & Russo, went full-on Hollywood barbie glam for the 2017 premiere of Spider Man: Homecoming.
Josephine Baker was the inspiration for the actress’s look (in a Mario Dice dress) for the 2017 Chrysalis Butterfly Ball, which fell on the legendary Jazz Age entertainer’s birthday that year.
In a showstopping Dolce & Gabbana gown for the Met Gala in 2017.
In Michael Kors for the CFDA Awards in 2016.
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