What We Learned From the Pandemic Red Carpet


On Sunday evening the 93rd Annual Academy Awards took place in real life, closing out what was literally the longest awards season of our lives. With the return of the actual, in-person red carpet, and jaw-dropping fashion from Armani, Chanel, Christian Dior, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Prada, Vera Wang, and Valentino to go with it, it felt like a true return to a glamorous kind of normal.

Though nobody will be eager to return to a virtual red carpet, there were some fashion trends that emerged from this season that we’d like to hang on to, from bold colors to one pint-sized fashion plate. Ahead, a look back at what we learned from the pandemic red carpet— and what it might tell us about the post-pandemic fashion ahead.

Josh O'Connor in Loewe Dan Levy in The Row Leslie Odom Jr. in Valentino Haute Couture.

Josh O’Connor in Loewe; Dan Levy in The Row; Leslie Odom, Jr. in Valentino Haute Couture.

The Men Really Stepped Up Their Fashion Game

Long gone are the days when men exclusively wore a classic tux or basic suit—both in black. There’s a time and place for tradition, but it was a refreshing twist to see men push boundaries this season. Leslie Odom, Jr. made the virtual red carpet his runway as he cranked out looks from Valentino Haute Couture at the Golden Globes, a Celine look with a ruffled collar and multiple silver chains for the Critics Choice Awards, and not one but two Versace looks for the BAFTAS— all before he wore an actual gold Brioni suit to the Oscars. And he wasn’t the only guy who tested the waters. We loved seeing Josh O’Connor in Loewe at Golden Globes, Dan Levy in The Row at SAGs, Riz Ahmed in Celine at the Golden Globes and Coleman Domingo in Atelier Versace at the Academy Awards which really set the bar high. Men seem to be finally ready to take big fashion risks, and we hope this continues post pandemic.

Image may contain Clothing Apparel Dress Human Female Person Amanda Seyfried Woman Evening Dress Fashion and Gown

Zendaya in Valentino Haute Couture; Regina King in custom Louis Vuitton; Amanda Seyfried in Giorgio Armani Privé.

Celebs Still Love to Dress Up

Given the opportunity to finally trade in sweats for high glam, celebrities seemed as eager to get back to normal as the rest of us. At the Oscars we saw the highest of glamour from Regina King, Andra Day, Zendaya, Amanda Seyfried, Emma Corrin, to Maria Bakalova, just to name a few. There’s no pandemic large enough to stop us from continuing to look our best, even if we’re just at home.