31 of the Most Iconic VMAs Beauty Looks Over the Years
The MTV Video Music Awards are almost here, and while this time around will undoubtedly look different from year’s past, we can only hope the beauty looks will be just as dramatic. Because when it comes to hair and makeup, the stars participating in the show tend to get . . . adventurous.
In previous years, hair hues have run the gamut from yellow to violet. And do you remember Lady Gaga’s meaty hair accessory? While the makeup often takes a more classic spin, you never know what to expect on the MTV stage. Keep reading to see the most memorable beauty moments in the history of the VMAs.
– Additional reporting by Paige Hagerman
Drew Barrymore and Courtney Love, 1995
Courtney Love and a young Drew Barrymore hooked up for a photo op at the 1995 VMAs. Both women wore dark red lipstick, but Drew accented her hair with a few daisies, bringing a new meaning to flower child.
Janet Jackson, 1994
Janet Jackson went for a more casual vibe in 1994, wearing her baseball cap and box braids to receive her award.
Britney Spears, 2000
No VMAs roundup would be complete without Britney Spears; in 2000 she wore a crimped and curled hairstyle.
Madonna went for a Farrah Fawcett curl at the 2005 VMAs.
Christina Aguilera, 2006
Christina Aguilera opted for a flapper vibe at the 2006 VMAs. Her hair was styled in Marcel waves and her lipstick was a deep plum shade.
Jennifer Lopez, 2006
This matching scarf and dress ensemble was a shining moment for Jennifer Lopez. Fierce smoky eye brought it all together.
Solange Knowles, 2009
Now, Solange Knowles is known for her voluminous Afro, but it was at the 2009 VMAs that she debuted this short, natural crop.
Lady Gaga, 2010
Who could forget Lady Gaga‘s blue streaks and steak hair piece?
Katy Perry, 2011
Katy Perry always wows us with her numerous hair color changes. She has tried everything from blue to black, but this lavender look from 2011 served as an iconic VMAs moment.
On stage at the 2011 VMAs, Beyoncé announced her pregnancy in a two-toned ponytail and glowing skin.
Rihanna had a Rosemary’s Baby moment in 2012 when she hit the 2012 carpet with a short pixie cut – an unexpected (but welcome) hair update.
Nicki Minaj, 2012
Nicki Minaj never disappoints with extreme red carpet looks, and at the 2012 VMAs she wore a sunshine yellow hairpiece and her signature bubblegum lipstick.
Lady Gaga, 2013
The theme was all black for Lady Gaga at the 2013 VMAs. She wore a long jet-black wig to accompany her leather dress, adding a pop of color with a melon-orange lipstick.
Rihanna paired her tiny grills with red lipstick and a mullet hairstyle for last year’s VMAs.
Katy Perry, 2014
Katy Perry complemented her all-denim ‘fit with a chic red lip and Old-Hollywood-style liner.
FKA Twigs, 2015
FKA Twigs knows how to make a statement – and she did just that with her effortless curls. That volume!
Taylor Swift, 2015
Taylor Swift rocked this fierce cat eye in 2015, making it obvious that she was long past her country era.
Naomi Campbell, 2016
Naomi Campbell‘s glittery red lip added a pop of color to the supermodel’s look.
Rihanna is no stranger to a legendary VMAs appearance, and she seriously slayed with this mauve lip.
Yara Shahidi, 2017
Yara Shahidi wowed the red carpet at the 2017 VMAs by pairing a teased low pony with a dewy beauty look.
Millie Bobby Brown, 2017
The obsession is real with Millie Bobby Brown’s polished low bun and clip combo.
Nicki Minaj, 2017
Nicki Minaj’s color-coordinated hairstyle and choker were the perfect balance of loud and chic.
Amandla Stenberg, 2018
Amandla Stenberg’s attention-grabbing red eye makeup was a flattering (and bold!) look for the star.
Cardi B, 2018
Cardi B totally brought back short hair when she debuted a pixie cut at the 2018 VMAs.
Lizzo is nothing short of a siren in this coiffed style, a word which happened to be printed all over her dress.
Halsey’s shimmery natural makeup in 2019 was the right choice to play up her unique rainbow roots.