Fashion 12 Best Dresses of the Decade By InStyle Editors InStyle Editors Facebook Instagram Twitter Our editors and writers comprise decades of expertise across the beauty, fashion, lifestyle and wellness spaces in print and digital. We prioritize journalistic integrity, factual accuracy, and also having fun with every story we share. InStyle's editorial guidelines Updated on March 24, 2015 @ 12:31PM Pin Share Tweet Email Trending Videos Photo: Frazer Harrison/Getty 12 Best Dresses of the Decade 01 of 13 100 Best Dresses of the Decade From barely-there figure-flaunters to sophisticated sheaths, the last 10 years have been great for gowns. Take a walk down memory lane (via the red carpet!) with InStyle fashion director Hal Rubenstein. 02 of 13 Kate Hudson in Versace, 2003 SGranitz/WireImage WHERE 75th Annual Academy Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "It had a level of extravagance that just had you gasping. The combination of her golden skin, golden hair and the yards of gold lace-I was stunned." -Hal Rubenstein, Fashion Director 03 of 13 Anne Hathaway in Armani Prive Mario Anzuoni/Landov WHERE 81st Annual Academy Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "The huge, iridescent paillettes came down at a diagonal and created a great mermaid effect. This dress almost matched her skin tone and was like a burst of light underneath her." 04 of 13 Charlize Theron in Vera Wang, 2000 Rob Beccaris/WireImage WHERE 72nd Annual Academy Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "Vera understands real, sexy, old-fashioned, 'knock 'em dead' glamour. The color is just great and, of course, the diamonds are perfectly placed. It's Old Hollywood without looking old." 05 of 13 Eva Mendes in Dior Steve Granitz/WireImage WHERE 68th Annual Golden Globe Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "This look has one moment of extravagance and shows that proportion is everything. If that wonderful fold at her hip was two inches wider or longer it might have failed-but it was so right. The Van Cleef & Arpels necklace is a spectacular complement." 06 of 13 Penelope Cruz in Atelier Versace Steve Granitz/WireImage WHERE 81st Annual Academy Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "Three things: A refined moment with her hair and makeup, a va-va-va-voom moment where the dress fits so close to her body and a big glamour moment with the intricate train that goes on forever." 07 of 13 Gwen Stefani in Valentino, 2004 Paul Smith/Featureflash/Retna WHERE 61st Annual Golden Globe Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "Here's the rocker chick wearing the most unlikely dress of the night. It's all about going against the grain and throwing people off." 08 of 13 Jessica Alba in Dolce & Gabbana Evan Agostini/Getty Images WHERE 58th International Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, FranceWHY WE LOVE IT "The movement of the fabric against her great body is sexy and, as sparkly as the dress is, there's something very withholding about it." 09 of 13 Kate Winslet in Atelier Yves Saint Laurent, 2009 Steve Granitz/WireImage WHERE 81st Annual Academy Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "This dress shows the sexiness of a real woman who makes no apologies for her curves." 10 of 13 Sarah Jessica Parker in Chanel Fernando Allende/CelebrityPhoto WHERE 55th Annual Emmy Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "There's something so happy about this dress. Those fabulous, weightless layers of organza-it's like cotton candy or a pink meringue souffle. They didn't bother with hair and makeup because the dress was such an eye-popper." 11 of 13 Drew Barrymore in Alberta Ferretti, 2009 Dave Allocca/Startraks Photo WHERE Grey Gardens premiere in New York CityWHY WE LOVE IT "Drew was channeling a femme fatale with the twenties hair and bee-stung lips. It had that unabashed boudoir feel that Alberta does so well." 12 of 13 Joy Bryant in Donna Karan, 2005 Gregg DeGuire/WireImage WHERE The Skeleton Key premiere in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "Everything comes dead center to the waist and starbursts out from there. It's about a woman being proud of her curves." 13 of 13 Reese Witherspoon in Nina Ricci, 2006 Frazer Harrison/Getty WHERE 65th Annual Golden Globe Awards in Los AngelesWHY WE LOVE IT "This was Reese's first moment out after her split with Ryan Philippe: Strapless, short, yellow, unadorned and showing her body. I love the unexpectedness of it. It was a brilliant strategy and it really worked."