Zendaya at the Met Gala: Her Most Unforgettable Outfits

The actress nails the event's theme every time, showing up in something special, stunning, and impossible to forget.

You don't have to be a style expert to know that the Met Gala is an event unlike any other. Each year (save for 2020, when the event was postponed due to COVID), celebrities walk the red carpet in outfits costumes that fit a specific theme — and nobody nails those interpretations quite like Zendaya and Image Architect, Law Roach.

Zendaya's Met Gala looks are unforgettable and have gone down as some of the best in fashion history, like when her Cinderella gown magically transformed before our eyes and when she climbed the Met steps dressed in body armor. In 2022, the theme of "In America: An Anthology of Fashion" — a continuation of a two-part series that began in 2021 — we saw a mix of historical references and ensembles created by American designers. Unfortunately, after skipping out on last year's Met Gala while filming Euphoria (a worthy sacrifice), Zendaya was missing from this year's event as well.

Zendaya Met Gala
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"Sorry to disappoint my fans here, but I will be working," she said in a red carpet interview. "Your girl's got to work and make some movies."

While we definitely understand, Zendaya will be missed, especially since we know her Met Gala comeback — which, she added, will happen eventually — will be bigger and better than ever.

Still, it's worth taking a look back at Zendaya's gorgeous Met Gala gowns and mini dresses over the years.

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Zendaya at Met Gala wearing a Cinderella gown made by Tommy Hilfiger.
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Zendaya went full princess at 2019's Met Gala, walking the red carpet in a Cinderella gown made by Tommy Hilfiger. The piece magically transformed from grey to blue in a matter of minutes (with an assist from Zendaya's Fairy Godmother, Law Roach), and the exciting performance nailed the night's theme, Camp: Notes on Fashion.

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Zendaya at the Met Gala wearing a silver Versace armor dress and her hair in a short bob
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2018's Met Gala theme, "Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination," was interpreted in a variety of unique ways, but Zendaya opted to channel Joan of Arc. Her sparkling, silver Versace dress was made to look like armor, yet felt sexy at the same time, complete with a thigh-high slit and multiple cutouts.

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Zendaya at Met Gala wearing metallic Michael Kors gown
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Zendaya's shiny, metallic Michael Kors dress fit right in with 2017's "Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology" theme — it kind of gave off a futuristic, digital vibe! — but at the same time, would work on any red carpet, especially thanks to that one-shoulder cutout.

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Zendaya at Met Gala wearing Fausto Puglisi outfit consisting of red patterned skirt and v-neck black top with a tiara
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At her first-ever Met Gala, Zendaya wore a short, whimsical look created by Fausto Puglisi. Her skirt — which included a sun motif as a nod to the "China: Through the Looking Glass" theme — featured a train that trailed behind her, and she accessorized with a tiara and a handful of bracelets.

We can't begin to imagine how she'll top these ensembles in the future, but we're confident she will — and we'll be celebrating when that day finally arrives. (Next year, maybe?)

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