The Untold Truth Of The Met Gala Bathroom Selfie

The Met Gala is easily one of the most iconic fashion events of the year where we can see our favorite celebrities dressed to the nines on the red carpet in their most dazzling outfits and dresses. Hosted each year by Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour at New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art, the theme of the 2022 event was "In America: An Anthology of Fashion" (via Vogue). Unless they're an A-list celebrity who was invited to the exclusive gala, most people will be watching the event from the comfort of their bedrooms in their mismatched pajamas while eating take-out. However, why haven't we seen many posts on social media of celebrities inside the event?

According to Cosmopolitan, once you've had your turn to walk up the Met's steps, all cell phones are encouraged to be put away. Overall, those in attendance are asked to be super secretive when it comes to what actually happens there, and no matter how famous they are, everyone is asked to abide by the rules. Although we've seen some pretty iconic photos of celebrities on the steps, some of the most authentic pictures are actually found to be taken in the bathrooms. If you are unfamiliar with this well-known tradition, keep reading to find out the untold truth of the Met Gala bathroom selfie. 

The event has a strict no-selfie and social media policy

Anna Wintour, Vogue, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art handed down the directive of no cell phones and no social media during the event (via Page Six). Since the annual Met Gala is so exclusive, guests are discouraged from taking any photos or videos, or even answering text messages. Basically, what happens at the Met must stay at the Met. 

According to the New York Post, former Met Gala organizer Sylvana Durrett spoke about some of the rules that Wintour expects guests to follow, especially during dinner. "Anna is sort of an old-school traditionalist," Durrett said. "She likes a dinner party where people are actually speaking to each other." Although there are plenty of rules that must be followed (like not being allowed to smoke), some celebrities have bent these rules, giving us a new tradition we all know and love: the bathroom selfie.

The first bathroom selfie emerged in 2017

If you are wondering who helped to usher in the famous bathroom Met Gala selfie trend, it's reality star and entrepreneur Kylie Jenner. Jenner was able to capture one of the most iconic group selfies of all time at the exclusive event featuring some major A-list celebrities. In the shot, the selfie included reality stars — and sisters — Kim Kardashian and Kendall Jenner, rapper A$AP Rocky, actress Paris Jackson, musician Frank Ocean, rapper and entrepreneur P-Diddy, actress Brie Larson, and more. The "Keeping Up with the Kardashians" star captioned the Instagram photo, "annual bathroom selfie" and since then, we've been blessed with a new tradition to look forward to each year.

Several other celebrities shared their versions of the selfie, showing that they were part of a legendary moment in pop culture. Larson shared the snap on her Instagram page, captioning the post, "I needed to go to the bathroom and ended up famous."

It's now a beloved post-red carpet tradition

Although we love seeing celebrities walk the famous red carpet at the Met Gala and gush over the posed photographs, the bathroom selfie posts have become one of the most highly anticipated aspects of the evening! Despite the no-phone rule, plenty of A-listers have been able to sneak in a few posts here and there, including celebs like model Hailey Bieber and reality star Kendall Jenner. In 2021, we were blessed with an endless amount of bathroom selfies, especially from groups of celebrities we never knew we needed to come together. 

"Strawberries & Cigarettes" singer Troye Sivan shared this epic photo on Instagram, featuring him standing at the Met Gala urinals wearing a red carpet dress. He captioned the photo "@badgalriri told @tomdaley to take this pic of me weeing." Lil Nas X shared an array of selfies on his Instagram page too, featuring stars like musician Billie Eilish, comedian Pete Davidson, actor Timothée Chalamet, and more. Although we love seeing celebs all glammed up on the Met Gala red carpet, there is something so relatable about these selfies that remind us that at the end of the day, they are people who love a good casual selfie — just like the rest of us! 

Celebrities have interesting thoughts on the tradition

While many celebrities have gotten the chance to be featured in one of these famous bathroom selfies, others are still patiently waiting for their moment to shine with a very specific group of people. ExtraTV correspondent Adam Glassman chatted with Jon Batiste at the 2022 Met Gala, and Batiste revealed who would be in his dream bathroom selfie if he ever got the chance to take one. "I want to get one of them group selfies ... that's what I want to do ... Maybe we get a musician one, like me and Kacey Musgraves and Leslie [Odom Jr.] and Quest[love]. It'd be a vibe," he said.

Even legendary actress Glenn Close reacted to the whole bathroom selfie saga on the red carpet of the 2022 Met Gala. When Glassman suggested Close take a group bathroom selfie, she jokingly responded, "At what point in the bathroom do you take a selfie?"

Some stars will never appear in a Met Gala selfie

While many A-list celebrities have made their mark on the red carpet at the Met Gala over the years, it may come as a shock that there are a handful of celebs who have yet to make an appearance. Cosmopolitan reported that as long as you are super famous, you can receive an invitation — unless you have been banned from attending, or simply have chosen not to go. However, some major artists and celebrities have still never attended a gala, and the list may blow your mind. 

First off, we have businesswoman and socialite Paris Hilton. Although many would expect the famous socialite to be among those in attendance for the most glamorous night of the year, she has never been. Among those who have never attended include actress Jennifer Aniston, diva superstar Adele, actress Meryl Streep, and pop star Britney Spears. Shocking, right? 

Remember how we mentioned some celebs were banned? Cosmopolitan reported that Anna Wintour admitted to permanently banning at least one specific public figure — former President Donald Trump.

Let's talk about the 2022 Met Gala

Many celebrities graced our social media feeds with selfies not only in the bathroom but also inside the actual event at the 2022 Met Gala! Over the years after the social media and no-phone rule was implemented, it seems that more and more celebrities have found a way to break the rules, considering we got plenty of inside looks of what actually goes down during the event and what it takes to prepare for it (via BuzzFeed). 

That being said, we were able to see some pretty incredible selfies of our favorite celebs and watched apparent friendships form that we never would have imagined. Rap and R&B stars Cardi B, Normani, and Megan Thee Stallion took perhaps one of the most iconic selfies of the year, and it will forever live rent-free in our brains (via Instagram). Model Winnie Harlow also took to Instagram, where she shared a photo of her and R&B artist Ciara together in a bathroom shot. Even "Bridgerton" actresses Phoebe Dynevor and Nicole Coughlan got together and took a selfie with fellow thespian Gemma Chan. All three ladies looked remarkably stunning (via New York Daily News).

Past Met Gala selfies are so iconic we haven't stopped thinking about them

While we loved looking at everyone's outfits and selfies from the 2022 Met Gala, it's important to note that there are plenty of past selfies and photographs taken at previous Met Galas that we may never forget.

InStyle reported that one of the coolest selfies to ever take place in the bathroom featured some of our favorite male artists, which included rappers Jack Harlow and Lil Wayne, comedian Pete Davidson, and R&B legend Erykah Badu. Entertainer Keke Palmer not only got together with actress and comedian Mindy Kaling for a video selfie shared on her Instagram Story, but she also gave us a never-before-seen inside look at the dinner that was served at the 2021 Met Gala (via Cosmopolitan UK). "This is why they don't show y'all the food," she captioned the Instagram story, which featured a photo of what appeared to be an assortment of vegetables and a tomato salad.