Melania Trump's Most Talked About Looks

Melania Hat Lead
Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Fact: What the First Lady of the United States wears is culturally significant. Don't think so? Take into account that the American government has placed some of their most iconic gowns in the First Ladies Collection at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History.

Their styles also defined the eras during which they served. Jacqueline Kennedy is famously remembered for her pillbox hats while Betty Ford did the '70s in color; Hillary Clinton owned the pantsuit, and Michelle Obama redefined First Lady style with frequently exposed shoulders and affordable dresses.

Which brings us to Melania Trump, one of the White House's most polarizing figures. Trump's sartorial choices make headlines time and time again, as the media scrupulously chronicles every dress, hat, and statement jacket. (As they did for the looks of every other first lady before her.)

Early on, Melania made it clear that she wasn't necessarily looking to speak to the common woman, turning to pricey, custom looks like a blue Ralph Lauren coat or an Hervé Pierre gown (over Inauguration weekend), not to mention the $51,000 Dolce & Gabbana coat she wore for a visit to Italy. With her fashion, the First Lady invariably sends a message—though it's not always a clear one.

VIDEO: A Theory About Melania Trump's Giant White Hat

Some of Melania's most memorable looks are shrouded in controversy. For example, before departing Washington, D.C. to visit the victims of Hurricane Harvey in Houston in August 2017, she faced waves of backlash for boarding the plane in a set of sky-high black Manolo Blahnik heels. And most recently, she faced criticism for sporting a $39 Zara coat that read, "I Really Don't Care. Do U?" before visiting an immigrant children's detention center in McAllen, Texas. Maybe she should stay clear of the Lone Star State?

One thing's for sure—Melania's outfits are never boring. Here's a look back at her memorable ensembles as FLOTUS.

01 of 49

June 2018

First Lady Melania Trump Visits Immigrant Detention Center On U.S. Border
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

in a $39 Zara military trench coat with the message, "I Really Don't Care. Do U?" on the back. The First Lady wore it while departing Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland for McAllen, Texas, where she arrived for a visit to an immigrant children's detention center.

02 of 49

June 2018

President Trump Hosts Spain's King Felipe And Queen Letizia At The White House
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

in a floral Valentino dress to welcome Spain's King Felipe VI and Queen Letizia to the White House. The pre-scheduled visit took place at the height of the immigration crisis that resulted from President Trump's zero-tolerance immigration policy.

03 of 49

June 2018

President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump Attend Hurricane Briefing at FEMA
Pool/Getty Images

in a beige trench coat for her first public appearance (at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) headquarters in Washington D.C.) after undergoing surgery for a benign kidney condition in early May 2018.

04 of 49

May 2018

First Lady Melania Trump Speaks On The Launch Of Her Initiatives In The Rose Garden Of White House
Win McNamee/Getty Images

in a belted Ralph Lauren trench coat to introduce her "Be Best" campaign at the White House.

05 of 49

April 2018

April 2018
BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/Getty Images

in a black Givenchy dress with a cape and Christian Louboutin shoes for a pre-State Dinner with French President Emmanuel Macron and First Lady Brigitte Macron.

06 of 49

April 2018

President Trump And First Lady Hosts State Dinner For French President Macron And Mrs. Macron
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

in custom Chanel for her and President Donald Trump's first State Dinner, welcoming President and First Lady of France Emmanuel and Brigitte Macron.

07 of 49

April 2018

Melania Hat Lead
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

in a $2,195 Michael Kors blazer with a belt and matching pencil skirt plus a massive custom Hervé Pierre hat for French President Emmanuel Macron and First Lady Brigitte Macron's White House arrival. Hard not to notice, the hat was compared to something Scandal's Olivia Pope would wear by many on social media.

08 of 49

April 2018

Melania Trump
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

in a light blue trench coat with black buttons and a black long-sleeve T-shirt, black pants, and matching boots at the 2018 Easter Egg Roll. Despite the pastel coat, her all-black look beneath it was an odd choice for Easter celebrations. The event came after news of Donald Trump's alleged affair with Stormy Daniels made headlines.

09 of 49

April 2018

April 2018
Pool/Getty Images

in a black dress at Barbara Bush's funeral service in Houston, where she was photographed smiling and laughing with Barack Obama.

10 of 49

March 2018

Melania Trump St. Patrick's Day
Getty Images

in a green, cheetah-print Brandon Maxwell sheath with snakeskin Christian Louboutin pumps for St. Patrick's Day with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar at the White House. The year before, she skipped the festivities and wore a red coatdress.

11 of 49

January 2018

January 2018
Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press(Sipa via AP Images

in a Dior pantsuit with a Dolce & Gabbana blouse and Christian Louboutin stilettos at the State of the Union address.

12 of 49

December 2017

Melania Trump
Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

in a Chanel coatdress and Christian Louboutin pumps at the White House Christmas tree lighting.

13 of 49

December 2017

December 2017
MANDEL NGAN/Getty

in a Prada peacoat, tan pants, and boots at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington, D.C. for a Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots campaign event.

14 of 49

December 2017

December 2017
ZUMAPRESS.com / MEGA

in knee-high brown boots, army pants, and a Rag & Bone puffer to meet with military officials and Hurricane Harvey first responders in the hangar at Corpus Christi International Airport. Despite the backlash she received for originally wearing stiletto heels before visiting Houston, Trump once again wore a not-so-subtle shoe.

15 of 49

November 2017

November 2017
Bloomberg

in a multi-colored striped Fendi coat for a visit to Japan.

16 of 49

November 2017

November 2017
NICOLAS ASFOURI/AFP/Getty Images

in a black turtleneck, Azzedine Alaïa belt, and black coat with beige flats for a trip to the Great Wall of China.

17 of 49

November 2017

Melania Trump
Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images

in a $4,000 dark plum Delpozo cape coat with structural sleeves for a visit to South Korea.

18 of 49

November 2017

November 2017
Mark Wilson/Getty Images

in a knee-length belted Emilio Pucci coat with Christian Louboutin pumps ahead of an 11-day tour of Asia.

19 of 49

November 2017

November 2017
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

in pointed-toe pumps with a red long-sleeve top tucked into a brown high-waist leather skirt with a multicolored coat at the White House lawn to pardon turkeys for Thanksgiving.

20 of 49

November 2017

November 2017
Chris Kleponis/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

in a long-sleeve black shirt under an oversize gray wool Acne Studios turtleneck sweater at the White House.

21 of 49

October 2017

October 2017
Bloomberg/Getty Images

in camel-colored, double-breasted Bottega Veneta wool coat for Halloween at the White House.

22 of 49

October 2017

October 2017
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

in a pinstripe Ralph Lauren Collection suit to meet Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife, Sophie Grégoire, at the White House.

23 of 49

October 2017

October 2017 
Jim Watson/AFP/Getty

in a bright green belted Cefinn shirtdress and Christian Louboutin stilettos for a visit to an addiction recovery center for infants in West Virginia.

24 of 49

October 2017

October 2017
Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty

in Alexander McQueen to meet Thailand's prime minister and first lady, Prayut Chan-o-cha and Madame Naraporn Chan-ocha, at the White House.

25 of 49

August 2017

August 2017
AP Photo/Evan Vucci

in a white shirt, Adidas Stan Smith sneakers, and a black FLOTUS hat.

26 of 49

October 2017

October 2017
JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty

in a Victoria Beckham turtleneck sweater before boarding Marine One to visit Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria.

27 of 49

October 2017

October 2017
MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty

in white jeans, a T-shirt, army jacket, and Timberland boots for her visit to Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria.

28 of 49

September 2017

September 2017
Alex Wong/Getty

in Monique Lhuillier for the White House Historical Association Dinner.

29 of 49

August 2017

August 2017
NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty

in a green bombet jacket, black top, and matching pants with aviator sunglasses and Manolo Blahnik stiletto heels at the White House before departing to visit Houston after Hurricane Harvey. The First Lady received criticism for her footwear, which people pointed out was a pretty impractical and tone-deaf choice for a trip to visit an area experiencing mass flooding.

30 of 49

July 2017

July 2017
Ron Sachs/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

in a white shirt with Altuzarra pencil skirt and Christian Louboutin heels for Fourth of July weekend.

31 of 49

July 2017

July 2017
Karol Serewis/Gallo Images Poland/Getty

in an emerald Diane von Furstenberg trench coat for a visit to Poland.

32 of 49

July 2017

July 2017
Petr David Josek/AP

in a colorblock Delpozo dress for a visit to Poland's Warsaw Uprising Monument.

33 of 49

July 2017

July 2017
Pierre Suu/Getty

in a red Christian Dior skirt suit for her first-ever meeting with France's President Emmanuel Macron and First Lady Brigitte.

34 of 49

July 2017

July 2017
PATRIK STOLLARZ/AFP/Getty

in a white flapper-style dress at the Elbphilharmonie concert hall in Hamburg, Germany as part of the Day 1 activities at the G20 Summit.

35 of 49

July 2017

July 2017
Chip Somodevilla/Getty

in a bright pink A-line Monique Lhuillier dress for a trip to Youngstown, Ohio.

36 of 49

July 2017

July 2017
VILLARD/WITT/SIPA

in a custom Hervé Pierre dress for her Bastille Day visit to France.

37 of 49

June 2017

June 2017
Ron Sachs/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

in Emilio Pucci to welcome India's Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, to the White House.

38 of 49

June 2017

June 2017
AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

in J Brand slacks, Manolo Blahnik sandals, and a Céline tone at Camp David.

39 of 49

June 2017

June 2017
Chris Kleponis/AP

in a pair of tan wide-leg pants, a white tank, patterned pumps, and a camel-colored tote for her official move to the White House.

40 of 49

June 2017

June 2017
Carolyn Kaster/AP

in a brown leather Michael Kors belt at Camp David.

41 of 49

June 2017

June 2017
Molly Riley- Pool/Getty

in Michael Kors Collection for the White House visit from the First Lady of Panama.

42 of 49

June 2017

June 2017
Ron Sachs-pool/Getty

in J. Mendel, at the wedding of Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and actress Louise Linton.

43 of 49

June 2017

June 2017
Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty

in Monique Lhuillier for the Ford Theatre Gala.

44 of 49

June 2017

June 2017
NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty

in Mary Katrantzou at a Congressional Picnic.

45 of 49

May 2017

May 2017
ALESSANDRA TARANTINO/Getty

in a black veil to meet Pope Francis. "Per Vatican protocol, women who have an audience with the Pope are required to wear long sleeves, formal black clothing, and a veil to cover the head," Stephanie Grisham, spokesperson for the First Lady, said in a statement to CNN.

46 of 49

May 2017

May 2017
Domenico Stinellis/AP Photo

in a $51,500 floral Dolce & Gabbana coat for an official visit to Italy.

47 of 49

March 2017

Melania Trump St Patrick's Day 2017
Andrew Harrer/Getty Images

in a red coatdress on St. Patrick's Day.

48 of 49

January 2017

Melania Trump Fashion
Melania at President Trump's inauguration, wearing Ralph Lauren. Pool/Getty Images

in Ralph Lauren at the Inauguration of President Donald Trump.

49 of 49

January 2017

Melania Trump Inauguration Ball Dress
SAUL LOEB/Getty Images

in custom Hervé Pierre at the Inauguration Ball.

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