The MTV Video Music Awards are always full of some pretty major pop culture moments, especially when it comes to the red carpet! Over the years, the awards show has been full of memorable and iconic fashions.

Lady Gaga, for one, nearly broke the internet in 2010 when she debuted the meat dress, which she revealed was the idea of makeup artists Val Garland. Ultimately, it was a way for Gaga to make “statements” with her look.

“We decided to do the meat dress because I thought to myself if we were willing to die for your country, what does it matter how you identify,” the songstress recalled during an interview with Vogue from November 2021. “This was ultimately designed by Franc Fernandez, but it was the brainchild of House of Gaga and we were backstage with Brandon Maxwell who was working as one of my stylists at the time. He was vegan also and still helping to sew all of these last bits of meat to me and making my meat hat and my meat purse, which was held by Cher. It smelled like meat.”

Although she’s since worn some pretty iconic looks, the “Shallow” singer called the meat dress “thrilling to wear.”

“There’s a corset under this but the corset was a sewn to the meat so this is actually a garment,” Gaga continued. “They didn’t just drape meat over me and cross their fingers.”

Years after Gaga’s meat dress came Miley Cyrus‘ nearly naked look. In 2015 — the year she hosted the show — the Hannah Montana alum arrived at the ceremony wearing a silver look that left little to the imagination with suspenders and a bedazzled skirt. Of course, years prior, Miley also turned heads in the neutral two-piece look for her 2013 performance complete with teddy bears.

“Me coming out of that teddy bear, to me, wasn’t just a teddy bear. My dad always explained it to me that you step into your happiness. That’s kind of like what I was doing,” the “Malibu” songstress recalled about that particular moment during her New York Times interview from August 2015. When I broke down the bear belly, I was really breaking out — my show ended, and then I didn’t really work for two years. That’s when I did my most self-exploration. [The performance] was kind of going into this way of saying, ‘I’m just going to do what will make me happy.’ At that moment, that’s what really made me happy.”

Scroll through our gallery to relive some of the wildest VMAs fashion moments over the years.


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Tyler Cowan