Oscars 2022 Red Carpet Fashion: The Good, The Mermaids and The Ugly

This year’s Oscars 2022 was a toss-up. We were so thrilled to have all of our favorite stars back on the red carpet and looking as debonair as ever. There were the great moments – Ariana DeBose saying, “There’s a place for us,” Jane Campion winning Best Director, and yes, there was a moment of silence for Ukraine, which was moving. CODA, a movie everyone seemed to feel good about, won Best Picture. 

Oscars 2022 Red Carpet Fashion

Then there were the not-so-great moments. One can’t ignore the slap heard round the world. Or what came after it (even if there was no audio). The moments when certain stars came out to certain kinds of music that made us think the Academy still had a long way to go. And, for me this year, the fashion did not cut it. There were a few standouts, as there always are, and they stood out more against the mess. But unfortunately, most of the red carpet would go on my Worst Dressed list. Do you agree?

Let’s start out on a positive note. I was delighted to see that Nicole Kidman was back in true form. Her look was beautiful, regal, and she took just a tiny bit of risk-taking. What would you say about Kidman’s dress? (I was literally scrolling through photos wondering if we were going have a hit or a miss. You never know with this one.)


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And of course, there were the jewel tones as always. I am a big fan of Old Hollywood glamour. 

The Good: Statement Gowns 

Nicole Kidman in light blue Armani Prive fountainof30
Nicole Kidman in Armani Prive
Lupita Nyong'o oscars 2022 gold prada fountainof30
Lupita Nyong’o in Prada
oscars 2022 jennifer gardner red gown fountainof30
Jennifer Garner in Brandon Maxwell 
penelope cruise in chanel couture fountainof30
Penelope Cruise in Chanel Couture
julianne Hough yellow pamela roland gown fountainof30
Julianne Hough in Pamella Roland

Same neckline much? These two weren’t even nominated and she looked gorgeous. 

oscars 2022 red carpet regina hall vera wang fountainof30
Regina Hall in Vera Wang
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Naomi Scott in Fendi

And of course…

jada pinkett-smith oscars 2022 green jean paul gautier fountainof30
Jada Pinkett-Smith in Jean-Paul Gaultier 

Say what you will about her husband’s reaction. Or about the high-neck, or the color of her gown. But I think Jada Pinkett-Smith looks absolutely stunning.

Experimental Gowns…and Trousers 

Several experimental gowns won me over. 

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Mila Kunis in Zuhair Murad

No, the color isn’t great but she wears it well. 

jill scott black gown oscars 2022 fountainof30
Jill Scott
cynthia erivo lv jacket and skirt oscars 2022 fountainof30
Cynthia Erivo in Louis Vuitton
amy forsyth marchesa red carpet oscars 2022 fountainof30
Amy Forsyth in Marchesa
ariana debose red valentino pants cape oscars 2022 fashion fountainof30
Ariana DeBose in Valentino

Alright well…not a fan of the pasties or that this pants and not a dress, but she wore this look well. 

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Ava DuVernay in Louis Vuitton

No, not a fan of the sleeves but the rest of the dress works so I’ll give it to her. 

The Mermaids: Under the Sea? 

I must point out that there was a rather strange mermaid/seashell trend going on at this year’s Academy Awards. Were the designers in on it (as they often are) or is this just the latest fashion? 

jessica chastain gucci mermaid gown oscars 2022 fountainof30
Jessica Chastain in Gucci

The mermaid of the night.

megan thee stallion gaurav gupta fountainof30
Megan Thee Stallion in Gaurav Gupta

I immediately thought of water. I don’t really like the sudden peek of skin in the middle but the dress itself and the way she wears it is stunning. 

becky g etro gown with shell hips oscars 2022 fountainof30
Becky G in Etro

Seashells on her hips. This was a bit confounding.

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Olivia Coleman in Christian Dior 

OK, you can say it’s metallic but I’m getting a water vibe. 

oscars 2022 red carpet Alana Haim in Louis Vuitton foiuntainof30
Alana Haim in Louis Vuitton

Yes! Fish scales! Or scallops…

oscars 2022 red carpet Vanessa Hudgens in Michael Kors fountainof30
Vanessa Hudgens in Michael Kors 

Ursula the sea witch? 

oscars 2022 Renata Reinsve in Louis Vuitton fountainof30
Renata Reinsve in Louis Vuitton

Yes, she does look like a disheveled pirate. Or like she just came out of the ocean. One of the two. 

And on that note…

The Ugly: Worst Dressed 

I just don’t know what the celebs were thinking this year. There were so many pasties going over the boobs, and so many strange cutouts. and ridiculous and tacky high slits. Even Tracee Ellis Ross, my fashion muse, looked the worst I’ve ever seen her. 

oscars 22 worst dressed Tracee Ellis Ross fountainof30
Tracee Ellis Ross in Carolina Herrera 
Zoe Kravitz in pink Saint Laurent fountainof30
Zoe Kravitz in Saint Laurent 

I know everyone was screaming Audrey Hepburn moment but it doesn’t sit on her well. Blah blah blah

Uma Thurman in Bottega Veneta white shirt black skirt oscars 22 fountainof30
Uma Thurman in Bottega Veneta

I don’t know…do you like this? It doesn’t feel very Oscars to me. More like fancy dinner party.

Venus Williams in salmon Gucci red carpet 2022 fountainof30
Venus Williams in Gucci

Oh Venus, you had a chance. Maybe. Then the shoe came out…and ruined the whole look.

Rachel Zegler in black Christian Dior gown red carpet 2022
Rachel Zegler in Christian Dior

I know she’s patting herself on the back for wearing Christian Dior to her first Oscars –a show she apparently almost didn’t attend – but why does this Christian Dior have to be so sheer. You can see everything. 

Kristen Stewart in Chanel shorts oscars 2022 fountainof30
Kristen Stewart in Chanel

I don’t even know what is going on here. She always tries very hard to look different than everybody else. Mission accomplished but shorts, even tuxedo shorts are not appropriate for the Oscar’s red carpet.

Billie Eilish in bl;ack ruffle Louis Vuitton red carpet 2022 fountainof30
Billie Eilish in Louis Vuitton

I cannot even believe this is Louis Vuitton. It was even worse from the side.

Hailey and Chloe Bailey high slit gowns oscars 2022 fountainof30
Hailey Bailey in Roberto Cavalli and Chloe Bailey in LVDF

I know I missed a few celebrities on the red carpet! So who did I miss? Please comment below.

–Simona Shemer 

Photos: E! Online, People.com, Vanity Fair

You may also like to read more of Simona’s celebrity style posts like The Best, The Worst and The Most Boring Met Gala 2021 Fashion and A Look At 5 Celebrities for Holiday Style Inspiration.

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