Met Gala Mainstays Who (Almost) Never Fail To Impress

When it comes to fashion, there is no event that compares to the Met Gala. There's a reason it's been called the fashion industry's Academy Awards and Super Bowl. Each year (with the exception of 2020 due to the global COVID-19 pandemic), stars and designers flock to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York for the gala that raises money for the museum's Costume Institute (via Vogue).

The theme for the gala changes each year, and the invited celebrities spend hours perfecting their looks. Fashion lovers and fans will often be glued to the screen to catch a glimpse of their favorite looks on the red carpet. While the invite list and attendees change as often as the theme, there are a few staples who keep the public and design world waiting to see what they're wearing each year at the Met Gala. Here are some of the celebrity mainstays who almost always impress us on fashion's biggest night.

Beyoncé gives diva glam

Beyoncé has wowed at the Met Gala since her first appearance in 2008 at the event's "Superheroes: Fashion and Fantasy" theme (via Hollywood Life). The "Single Ladies" singer sure looked like a fashion superhero in a white Armani Privé strapless dress, emerald earrings, and a chic, understated hairstyle.

Throughout her many appearances on the Met Gala red carpet, Beyoncé is known for her elegant, slightly edgy diva style. With her many eye-catching gowns, like the black and gold Emilio Pucci look from 2011, or the sheer Givenchy Couture dress complete with purple feathers, Beyonce always turns heads when she shows up at the big event. She even served as the honorary chair in 2013. Although Beyoncé always shines at the gala, she hasn't attended since 2016 (via Elle). That year, she arrived at the event without her husband, rapper Jay-Z, wearing a nude-colored latex Givenchy gown and dark, dramatic eye makeup.

Lady Gaga makes a statement

Pop star and actress Lady Gaga is no stranger to a major fashion moment. Throughout the years, the singer has had several iconic looks on stage, award shows, and even paparazzi street photos. Being the style icon she is, it's no surprise Gaga would bring her fashionista ways to the Met Gala.

The "Poker Face" singer made her Met Gala debut in 2010, where she unfortunately missed the red carpet but still wowed when she performed in a dazzling Armani Privé bodysuit, according to The Zoe Report. When Gaga made it to the red carpet for the first time in 2015, she wore a jaw-dropping black Balenciaga ensemble to commemorate the theme "China: Through the Looking Glass" (via The Hollywood Reporter).

Perhaps the most iconic Met Gala look, however, is 2019's hot pink Brandon Maxwell gown equipped with a matching bow atop her blonde bob for the "Camp: Notes on Fashion" theme. However, that wasn't her only look that year. After walking several blocks to the event with an entourage of dancers, she had multiple reveals that ultimately led to onlookers getting four different looks from the superstar by the time she made it to the event (via Time).

Jared Leto takes chances

When actor Jared Leto hits the Met Gala red carpet, he proves that men's fashion can also be fun and inventive. As he does in his acting roles, Leto isn't afraid to take chances or make a statement on one of fashion's biggest nights. Oftentimes for Leto, those Met Gala style statements also get a lot of people talking. For example, Leto caused a stir when he arrived at the 2019 Met Gala in a red Gucci turtleneck gown draped in jewels. However, it wasn't just the dress that turned heads. In fact, it was actually a head. Leto accessorized with a mannequin head that looked just like him (via GQ). The made-for-virality look was even spoofed by comedian Mindy Kaling when she dressed up as Leto for the Met Gala Challenge on Instagram (via Business Insider).

Leto also made a splash when he showed up in a Jesus-inspired Gucci look for 2018's "Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination" themed Met Gala.

Rihanna always lands on the best dressed list

Of all of the famous names and trendsetters who make their way to the Met Gala each year, there is always one celebrity who everyone anxiously awaits to see. Of course, that is the belle of the ball, Rihanna. Year after year, the singer and beauty mogul makes headlines for her Met Gala looks. The fashion icon made her Met Gala debut in 2007 in a whimsical and understated white Georges Chakra dress. Since then, Rihanna's gala style has become more daring as she hammers home each year's theme.

True to 2018's "Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination" theme, Rihanna hit the red carpet embodying a high fashion Pope. The "Diamonds" singer impressed in a beaded Maison Margiela dress and headpiece. According to Harper's Bazaar, the look took more than 200 hours to sew with another 500 hours devoted to embroidery. In 2021, Rihanna showed up to the Met Gala with her boyfriend A$AP Rocky, where they made a statement as the last celebrities to arrive, according to Vogue.

Zendaya is fashion forward

If Rihanna is the reigning queen of the Met Gala, actress Zendaya might be the heir to the throne. Always one to wow on the red carpet and events like the Academy Awards, Zendaya continues her show-stopping style at the Met Gala. As a fashion icon in her own right, the "Euphoria" actress manages to nail the gala's themes each year she attends.

For 2019's camp-themed Met Gala, Zendaya went back to her Disney roots when she arrived dressed as Cinderella in a light blue Tommy Hilfiger dress (via Teen Vogue). She even came to the event with a fairy godmother. The previous year, Zendaya personified Joan of Arc when she wore a metallic Versace look complete with a choppy auburn bob and bangs (via Vogue). Unfortunately for Zendaya fans and fashion lovers, the actress revealed she won't be attending 2022's Met Gala. "Your girl's got to work and make some movies," she told "Extra." "I'll be back, though, eventually."

Blake Lively brings glam to the gala

Actress Blake Lively has been a Met Gala mainstay since she first showed up at the event in 2008 wearing a Ralph Lauren dress (via E! News). Lively nails it every year, and is even known to go the extra mile by literally matching her look with the Met Gala's carpet. In 2020, she playfully posted three Instagram photos of her gowns on the matching carpets, with the caption, "When the carpet matches the Blakes. Met Ball 2018, 2017, 2016."

Of her many iconic Met Gala looks throughout the years, one standout is the gown from 2018. Lively hit the carpet in a regal gown that took an unbelievable amount of time to create. "They've already worked on it for 600 hours, and it's not done," she told Vogue ahead of that year's Met Gala. This year, the stylish star will serve as a co-chair for the event, along with her husband Ryan Reynolds, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Regina King (via The Hollywood Reporter).

Katy Perry is the theme queen

Pop star Katy Perry has had her share of iconic fashion moments. From the stage to the red carpet, Perry isn't afraid to stand out with bold and fun styles. It's no different for the "I Kissed A Girl" singer when she makes her way to the Met Gala. In fact, Perry just might be the theme queen, as she is known to lean into the years' themes with her extravagant and well-thought-out looks.

When she co-chaired the 2017 Met Gala, themed "Comme des Garçons", Perry wore a fashion-forward Maison Margiela gown and headdress (via Vogue). In 2018, the singer showed up as an angel when she arrived donning large wings over a Versace dress (via Teen Vogue). The Met Gala's 2019 theme "Camp: Notes on Fashion" seemed as if it were made especially for Perry. That year, she lit up the red carpet when she dressed as a chandelier.

Kim Kardashian switches up her looks

Kim Kardashian is no stranger to attention and press, and she's had her share of attention since making her Met Gala debut in 2013. That year, she walked the gala's red carpet for the first time in a floral patterned Riccardo Tisci for Givenchy dress. The look from a then-pregnant Kardashian spanned memes and conversation, but it wouldn't be the last time she would turn heads at the Met Gala.

In 2019, Kardashian made headlines again when she wore a much talked about look for that year's "Camp: Notes on Fashion" theme. The reality star arrived in a fitted, nude colored latex dress with dripping jewels that made it look as if she was wet. She even completed the ensemble with a wavy, wet hairstyle. Kardashian revealed the inspiration for the watery look on the Met Gala red carpet. "This is the first time in 20 years Mr. Mugler has designed the House of Mugler," Kardashian told Vogue (via People). "He envisioned me as this California girl stepping out of the ocean, wet, dripping."