Stylists have become such an integral part of Hollywood’s sartorial fabric, priming and perfecting celebrities’ outfits right up until they reach the red carpet. So it’s hard to believe that we lived in a world without the fantastical creations of style architects like Law Roach and Harry Lambert (the masterminds behind Zendaya and Harry Styles’ red carpet ensembles); that there was a period where celebrities had to walk the runway of life alone. But it was the ’90s. Maximalism was at an all-time high; low-rise jeans were not only accepted but encouraged, and it was before the pressures of social media, which has made going to the grocery store an event worth dressing for.
Pre-stylist, celebrities had to plan their looks and call in samples, process returns (we would pay good money to see Gwyneth Paltrow returning a dress at FedEx), all the while being the face of their brand. A lot of work indeed, especially with some dozens of appearances per week—yet many A-listers still adhere to this old-school way of self-dressing for a multitude of reasons. One of them being that fashion is nuanced and imbued with meaning. The stitching on a cuff, or the length of a dress, can send a certain message—with the wrong one being an occupational hazard. Just look at Vice President Kamala Harris, who demonstrated the intrinsic meaning of fashion at her victory speech in Delaware, as her ivory white pantsuit was an ode to the female political activists that came before her. Many celebrities want to reclaim that meaning, rather than having another person translate it through fashion for them.
With Instagram opening the opinion flood gates and the rise of celebrity appearances, it makes it that much more interesting when celebrities take control of their look by choosing to go sans stylist. And though the list is small, it’s a mighty one, full of musicians, actors, and even royalty. Below, feast your eyes on the 13 celebrities serving looks without a stylist, and who will most definitely prompt you to keep close tabs on their future sartorial choices.