The most outrageous Grammy fashion hits
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Show-Stopping Style1 of 26
By Brienne Walsh
Unlike other red carpets, where celebs play it safe with their style, the Grammys inevitably yields some of the more outrageous rock-and-roll looks. From Cher's butterfly-inspired bikini to Lady Gaga's space-age costumes, check out the most jaw-dropping outfits over the last three decades.
Fairy Queen2 of 26
The godmother of risqué red carpet style, Cher looked positively ethereal in her outfit at the 1974 awards. Wearing bedazzled butterflies in her hair and at the center of her white bikini halter-top, she still managed to keep things demure by draping her body in a gauzy white shawl.
Tickled Pink3 of 26
We wouldn't expect anything less than over-the-top and fabulous from Dolly Parton. She didn't disappoint in this hot pink polyester catsuit with a matching bow and flowing sleeves at the 1977 show. She didn't win her first Grammy until the next year, however, when she snagged Best Female Country Vocal Performance for her album Here You Come Again.
Drag King4 of 26
If her outfit at the 1984 Grammys is any indication, it appears Annie Lennox's sweet dreams are made of fantasies of being Elvis Presley. Although her band, the Eurythmics, didn't end up winning the award for Best New Artist, Lennox herself certainly deserves props for her excellent impersonation.
Warrior Princess5 of 26
Even though Grace Jones didn't win a Grammy, she certainly made her mark on the 1983 red carpet. Wearing a wide-brimmed hat along with a samurai-inspired top that kept slipping off her slender frame, she spent most of the night hanging on the arm of Rick James
Rainbow Bright6 of 26
Wearing a mish-mash of color, layers and accessories, Cyndi Lauper looked like a kid playing dress-up in her grandma's closet when she arrived at the 1984 ceremony. The singer went on to win a Grammy for Best New Artist in 1985 and, as eclectic as her style was, we wouldn't change a thing—after all, it was her outrageous fashion sense that proved girls just wanna have fun.
Thin Ice7 of 26
The gold dress Paula Abdul wore to the 1990 Grammys was better suited for the Ice Capades than the red carpet. Still, her golden scrunchie makes us nostalgic for times when it was still appropriate to wear your hair in a sky-high ponytail.
Braid-y Bunch8 of 26
Only the No Doubt front-woman Gwen Stefani could wear a headful of pigtail braids to the 1998 Grammys and still look cool. While her fashion choices today are decidedly more chic and sophisticated, we love that she's never afraid to push the style envelope.
Glow On9 of 26
In a tube top, sequin panties and glittering tights, Lil Kim sure made a grand entrance to the Grammys in 1998. The exhibitionist rapper topped off the look with a floor-length rhinestone-studded mesh shawl and diamond necklace.
Witchy Woman10 of 26
With her cherry red kimono and ebony hair, Madonna looked more like a wicked stepmother from a Disney fairy tale than she did the Queen of Pop at the ceremony in 1999.
Pygmalion Princess11 of 26
In her white turtleneck sequined gown, Shania Twain looked more marble statue than human when she collected two Grammys for her hit song "You're Still the One." Not that we would mind looking half as beautiful.
Daring Dominatrix12 of 26
Although Faith Hill's look is usually more wholesome, she went full-on S&M for the Grammy red carpet in 2000. Her skintight black leather gown and tousled hair screamed sex kitten, making everyone forget she was a good ole country girl.
Sheer Genius13 of 26
There is no red carpet gown more iconic than this super low-cut Versace number Jennifer Lopez wore to the Grammys in 2000. Later that year, Trey Parker spoofed the look at the Academy Awards.
Garden Variety14 of 26
Although they were probably going for a sexy sisterhood kind of look, Destiny's Child iterations on the same scanty green sequined outfit made them look like they were auditioning for the role of Poison Ivy, Batman's arch nemesis, at the 2001 Grammys.
Barely There15 of 26
It seems the 2001 Grammy Awards were clothing optional for Toni Braxton. Instead of a gown, she sported a few strips of strategically placed white fabric, leaving very little to the imagination.
Woman Overboard16 of 26
Although she didn't win an award at the 2001 Grammys, Christina Aguilera still managed to shake up the red carpet in platinum blond cornrows and a pink gown barely held together at the bodice. Looking like she had just washed up from a shipwreck, the singer wore an outfit that was just as dirrty as her hit song.
So Sari17 of 26
Known for her more conservative style, Alicia Keys had everyone talking after wearing this sari-inspired wrap with embellished jeans and a plain white tank top at the 2002 Grammy Awards.
Wild Child18 of 26
In 2002, Pink set the stakes high for outrageous Grammy outfits by wearing a sparkly pink bra with a bowtie, garter belt, and a pair of one-legged pants. She went home with an award for her collaboration on "Lady Marmalade"; the missing pant leg was never found.
Rebel Yell19 of 26
In 2003, Avril Lavigne was the punk enfant terrible and she made sure to let the world know it by walking the red carpet in a men's suit paired with a blazer marked with the words "Rock On" in masking tape. As with all teens, this was only a phase and it wasn't long before she was wearing ball gowns and dying her hair pink.
Yellow Fever20 of 26
Sheryl Crow doesn't need to prove to anyone she has a good body—especially not after she exposed her fabulously toned midriff in the infamous yellow cutout dress she wore to the ceremony in 2005.
Sexy Mama21 of 26
At the 2009 ceremony, rapper MIA looked ready to pop but she wasn't afraid to show off her baby bump. Alternating between a bright blue batik-printed clown dress and a sheer paneled polka-dot number that highlighted her belly, she kept things comfortable in a pair of cool kicks.
Strip Down22 of 26
The sheer paneled Dolce & Gabbana gown Britney Spears wore to the Grammys in 2010 was a misstep, to say the least. Not so much an outfit as it was negligee, we prefer the iconic nude bedazzled bodysuit she strutted her stuff in at the Video Music Awards in 2000.
Clean Sweep23 of 26
Many of Rhianna's Grammy looks have been memorable, but the most insanely awesome was the short pastel dress she wore to the 2010 awards. Resembling both a decorative fan and the underside of a broom, she somehow managed to make the fashion-forward dress look chic and beautiful.
Space Nymph24 of 26
The queen of shock, Lady Gaga staked her claim as a pop goddess by wearing costumes so outrageous that they are less fashion than performance art. While she's made some pretty memorable appearances at the Grammys (translucent eggs, anyone?) our favorite getup was the Armani Privé space-inspired creation she wore to the 2010 awards.
Pop Angel25 of 26
Even when she's on the street, the stage or the red carpet, Katy Perry always looks like she's in costume, so it's no surprise she opted to dress as an angel rather than an ordinary girl for the 2011 Grammys. Sure, the diaphanous white material looked a little silly trailing behind her, but she looked like she was having the time of her life in the gown.
Wild Thing26 of 26
It's hard to think of an occasion when Nicki Minaj has not stepped out of the house looking outrageous. At the 2011 Grammys, however, she really outdid herself in a head-to-toe Givenchy leopard getup, paired with a matching Bride of Frankenstein wig.