2021 VMAs kicked off Sunday night with a serious sartorial scene on the red carpet. Kacey Musgraves and Lil Nas X stepped out in head-turning purple ensembles that featured all sorts of elaborate details — think oversize feather hats and floor-sweeping trains. They clearly got the memo that at the VMAs, more is always more.
Red was another contender for top color of the night, as we saw on Doja Cat — who went with scarlet-hued thigh-high boots — and Bia, who wore a fiery red look from head to toe. Other big moments on the red carpet included nods to all things Y2K fashion, like low-rise pants and arm sleeves.
Of course, that over-the-top aesthetic is what we’ve come to expect from the VMAs. In the past, fans watched the red carpet for ultra exaggerated looks, from Lady Gaga’s meat dress to Lizzo’s Siren-inspired gown. Whether a thong-baring dress or a billowing cape gown, celebrities always bring their A-game on the VMAs red carpet, and this year is no different.
Ahead, we round up all of the best dressed celebs from VMAs 2021.
1 Kacey Musgraves’ 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Jason Kempin/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
The “Star-Crossed” singer wore a sleeveless
violet-hued minidress with subtle ruched detailing by Valentino. She upped the ante with eye-catching accessories, including a larger-than-life feather hat and red leather opera length gloves. 2 Lil Nas X’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Rob Kim/FilmMagic/Getty Images
The 22-year-old rapper wore a custom
all-lavender look by Versace, complete with an off-the-shoulder silhouette and a floor-sweeping train that was a nod to Lil’ Kim at the 1999 VMAs. 3 Normani’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Rob Kim/FilmMagic/Getty Images
Normani chose a monochromatic white look by Patrycja Pagas, comprising a cropped jacket and a micro miniskirt. She accessorized with Djula jewelry and white pointy-toe heels.
4 Olivia Rodrigo’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Astrid Stawiarz/WireImage/Getty Images
The “Good 4 U” singer made her first VMAs appearance in a strapless coral and fuchsia number by Atelier Versace, an early aughts throwback from the label’s Spring/Summer 2001 collection. Glittery butterfly earrings pulled together the look.
5 Saweetie’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Rob Kim/FilmMagic/Getty Images
Another halter-top silhouette means that the early aughts staple is here to stay. Saweetie hopped on the metallic train with a silvery maxi dress from the Valentino Resort 2022 collection and ankle-strap heels.
6 Halle Bailey’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images
Halle fully embraced
the cut-outs trend with a white gown and a plunging neckline. White heels and chandelier diamond earrings added elements of Old Hollywood glamour. 7 Shawn Mendes’ 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Rob Kim/FilmMagic/Getty Images
Shawn also got the all-white memo, hitting the red carpet in a white blazer and pants layered over a plain white tank top. It’s giving modern
Miami Vice vibes. 8 Simone Biles’ 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Jeff Kravitz/MTV VMAs 2021/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
The Olympian arrived on the red carpet in an elegant one-shoulder dress in a soft, pretty blush hue. She kept accessories to a minimum, opting for silver hoop earrings and coordinating heels.
9 Billy Porter’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Rob Kim/FilmMagic/Getty Images
Because why win a Moon person statue when you could just
become a Moon person statue? That’s clearly what the Pose star was going for in this head-to-toe silver look. 10 Paris Hilton’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Kevin Mazur/MTV VMAs 2021/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Paris proved silver was among the night’s favorite shades in a futuristic mini dress and matching heels. The ’80s-inspired shoulder pads added a funky architectural element.
11 Megan Fox’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Astrid Stawiarz/WireImage/Getty Images
The VMAs isn’t the VMAs without at least one see-through dress. This year, the 33-year-old actress went for
Rose McGowan at the 1998 VMAs in a sheer midi-length number with barely-there shimmery embroidery and gold peep-toe pumps. 12 Doja Cat’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Astrid Stawiarz/WireImage/Getty Images
Doja Cat channeled 2000s going-out vibes in platform thigh-high boots and a fitted bustier top. Chunky jewelry added the finishing touches to her eclectic ensemble.
13 Avril Lavigne’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Cher Horowitz’s influence continues to thrive. Avril channeled the iconic
Clueless character in a hot pink plaid suit paired with a blingy bustier and a silver purse. 14 Bia’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images
Few can make red on the red carpet work, but Bia managed to do just that in a halter-top dress with a matching purse and strappy square-toe heels.
15 Dove Cameron’s 2021 VMAs Red Carpet Look Astrid Stawiarz/WireImage/Getty Images
Attention, millennials: It’s time to channel your adolescence, because arm sleeves are baaaaack. Dove sported a chic all-mint outfit, accessorizing with arm sleeves and a mini purse.