For fashion lovers, there are few things more satisfying to witness than a celebrity style transformation gone right.
For some stars, this transition from red carpet ingenue to bona-fide bombshell has been more drastic than others. As their careers have gone from strength to strength, so too has their personal style, cementing them as fashion icons or setting them firmly on the path to fashion greatness.
Take, for example, Australia’s own Margot Robbie, who went from soap opera star to Chanel ambassador, or Angelina Jolie, whose considered fashion choices are a far cry from the rocker style she helped popularise in the late 1990s.
For old times’ sake, scroll down for the most dramatic celebrity style transformations in Hollywood history.
Victoria Beckham: Then
As the ‘sexiest’ member of the Spice Girls, Victoria Beckham’s turn-of-the-century wardrobe teemed with skin-tight dresses, stilettos and plenty of Tom Ford-era Gucci. In fact, few looks are more memorable than her Vera Wang wedding dress, which she even topped off with a miniature crown.
Victoria Beckham: Now
VB’s style is more streamlined than it’s ever been. The singer-turned-designer now favours tailored suiting and a modern, consistent wardrobe aesthetic, plenty of which she channels into her eponymous label, Victoria Beckham. Regardless, she’s still as glamorous as ever.
Back in the day Rihanna‘s style was very streamlined and classic, think short body con dresses and matching looks. She was never afraid to show a little skin, and often rocked cropped hair cuts and glowy makeup with a smokey eye.
With her LVMH-owned label, Fenty, cementing her status as a fashion mogul, there are few looks that Rihanna can’t pull off, or make us want to emulate. She’ll often go for architectural or sculptural looks on the red carpet.
Kim Kardashian: Then
Kim Kardashian is refreshingly open about the fashion transformation she underwent at the hands of her ex-husband, Kanye West. In the late ’00s and early ’10s (before West completely purged her closet in a 2012 episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians), the social media star favoured over-the-top glamour instead of sartorial simplicity.
Kim Kardashian: Now
The picture of Kim above (wearing Vivienne Westwood at the Met Gala) is from 2017, but it perfectly embodies the sleek, minimal and clean-cut aesthetic that’s now become her signature—even if she occasionally breaks it up with a revealing look from the likes of Thierry Mugler and Versace.
Angelina Jolie: Then
In the earliest days of her career, Angelina Jolie‘s red carpet style was monochromatic and tomboyish, with the self-confessed “bad girl” favouring androgynous outfits, accessories and beauty looks.
Angelina Jolie: Now
As a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador and accomplished Hollywood actress, Jolie has left her rebellious fashion firmly in the past, opting for polished, dignified looks by the likes of Celine, Atelier Versace and Ralph & Russo.
Emma Stone: Then
At the start of her successful acting career, Emma Stone experimented with a variety of fashion and beauty looks, seen here in 2011 in a vibrant, coral-coloured gown and her natural blonde hair.
Emma Stone: Now
Considering she’s now a Louis Vuitton ambassador and friend of creative director Nicolas Ghesquière, Stone almost always wears chic, statement-making bespoke looks by the iconic French label, making for one of our favourite celebrity/brand partnerships.
Gemma Chan: Then
Pre-Crazy Rich Asians Gemma Chan played it very safe (albeit, still elegantly) on the red carpet, pictured here at the BAFTAs in 2011.
Gemma Chan: Now
Since the release of Crazy Rich Asians, Chan has become known for her exuberant, experimental red carpet style. She’s not afraid of colour or extravagant shapes.
Meghan Markle: Then
It’s becoming increasingly hard to remember a time when Meghan Markle wasn’t royal, but before she became a Duchess in 2018, she had much more room to experiment with fashion (pictured here wearing a two-piece set by Hervé Léger in 2013).
Meghan Markle: Now
After marrying Prince Harry in May 2018, Meghan brought a sense of modernity to the conservative dress codes imposed on British royal family members, even after stepping down as a senior royal. Some of her favourite designers include Oscar de la Renta, Emilia Wickstead, and Givenchy’s Clare Waight Keller, who designed her world-famous wedding dress.
Selena Gomez: Then
During her days as a singer and Disney Channel actress, Selena Gomez was known for her age-appropriate red carpet style, pictured here in 2011.
Selena Gomez: Now
Now, Selena Gomez is not afraid to be playful with colour and shape, often opting for floor-length gowns these days, but of more luxurious, Old-Hollywood glamour energy.
Like Selena Gomez before her, Zendaya grew up in front of the spotlight, and has experimented extensively with hair, beauty and fashion during the beginning of her career as a Disney Channel star.
Nowdays, it would be a fair to rank Zendaya among fashion’s reigning It-girls. The Euphoria star works closely with her stylist, Law Roach, to produce an array of showstopping looks.
Margot Robbie: Then
During and immediately after her time on Australian soap opera Neighbours, Margot Robbie‘s red carpet style was laid-back, simple, and far from the high-fashion aesthetic she champions today.
Margot Robbie: Now
Since her breakout role in The Wolf of Wall Street, Robbie has ascended the high-fashion ladder, and became an ambassador for Chanel in 2018—regularly attending awards ceremonies and events in custom looks by the covetable label. Since her contract with Chanel ended, she’s been regularly seen wearing Bottega Veneta.
Celine Dion: Then
Around the time Celine Dion attained global success for her song “My Heart Will Go On”, her style was elegant, graceful, and worthy of a chart-topping diva (pictured here in 1998).
Celine Dion: Now
Now, Celine Dion’s style is almost as enlightening as her voice is—from her unforgettable sequinned Oscar de la Renta ensemble at the 2019 Met Gala (pictured), to the delightfully meta Titanic hoodie she helped popularise in 2017.
Sofia Richie: Then
Sofia Richie, who is Lionel Richie’s daughter, has been working as a model since the age of 17, and reached new levels of fame when she briefly dated Justin Bieber in 2016, before later dating Scott Disick. Her style in her early years was avant garde mixed with off-duty model: think glitter cat suits one day, then an oversized blazer and denim the next.
Sofia Richie: Now
Sofia Richie’s style transformation, documented on Instagram and TikTok in the days leading up to her wedding to Elliot Grange will go down as one of the biggest fashion moments of 2023. Her style took on a grown-up, chic, and — yes, to use the overused phrase — quiet luxury aesthetic that is being emulated by wannabe It-girls the world over. A contract with Chanel certainly can’t hurt here.