Celebrities’ evolving aesthetics often take you on a journey, but Emily Ratajkowski's style evolution tells a very specific and empowering story. The
High Low With EmRata podcaster knows a thing or two about being overtly sexualized and the price women pay for being seen as desirable. “For the majority of my career in my 20s, so much of who I was in the world was this one-dimensional character that was just about image,” she recently told Elite Daily. “It was really frustrating for me.”
Gone Girl actor has spent her career grappling with being viewed as an object and, subsequently, rebelling against objectification, and it’s fascinating to watch her trajectory from off-duty model to skin-baring bombshell. At the start of her modeling career, her styling choices told you very little about her, but over time Ratajkowski’s looks became more expressive — and more revealing. Each time she donned a ‘fit that threw caution to the wind, you can almost hear her saying, “I just don’t care anymore. If it feels good to me, I’m going to do it.”
The story of Ratajkowski's reclamation of her body, as told through her evolving aesthetic, is one you’ll want to read again and again. Despite often being criticized for embracing her sensuality and femininity, the
never stopped pushing fashion boundaries. From plunging necklines to barely there fishnet dresses, Ratajkowski’s style choices are those of a woman who’s not afraid to celebrate herself. Ahead, see some of her boldest fashion moments from 2013 until now. My Body author March 2013: Emily Ratajkowski’s Cool Girl Makeup Mike Windle/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
At the start of her career, Ratajkowski was the quintessential cool girl. At an art gallery opening in March 2013, she paired a glossy lip with kitten eyeliner and a few swipes of mascara. Her vibe at the time was totally effortless, but didn’t tell you much about who she was.
June 2013: Emily Ratajkowski In Joggers Kirstin Sinclair/FilmMagic/Getty Images
In her cool girl era, Ratajkowski stuck to a very casual, off-duty model look. In addition to minimal or no-makeup makeup, she opted for neutral separates like the blazer and joggers she wore during Paris Fashion Week in June 2013.
November 2014: Emily Ratajkowski With Smokey Eye Makeup Amanda Edwards/WireImage/Getty Images
Inching away from her no-makeup makeup aesthetic, Ratajkowski experimented with a copper-toned smokey eye look at a Hollywood Foreign Press Association event in 2015.
August 2015: Emily Ratajkowski In A Low-Cut Dress Steve Granitz/WireImage/Getty Images
In 2015, Ratajkowski began showing more skin on red carpets and serving bolder looks to boot. At the Los Angeles premiere of
We Are Your Friends, she appeared confident and relaxed in a peachy dress with a plunging neckline. September 2016: Emily Ratajkowski’s Barely There Beaded Dress Michael Stewart/WireImage/Getty Images
Harper’s Bazaar party in 2016, Ratajkowski wore her first, but certainly not her last, nearly naked dress. The dress caused a stir that the My Body author still remembers to this day. During an interview in October 2022, Ratajkowski calls the beaded Julien Macdonald gown, “The most controversial dress I’ve ever worn.” Although she was accused of seeking attention and even being vulgar, Ratajkowski doesn’t regret a thing. "I still think I look great," she said. September 2017: Emily Ratajkowski With Bangs Christian Vierig/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
In 2017, Ratajkowski brought blunt bangs to New York Fashion Week. The hair change was a moment, but her outfit, while appearing casual, contained subtle clues that she was becoming more expressive through her aesthetic. The texture of her blouse, the vibrant color of her heels, and the patterned belt all signaled a departure from the muted looks at the beginning of her career.
May 2018: Emily Ratajkowski’s Backless Metallic Gown Taylor Hill/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Your girl loves a cut-out. At the 2018 Met Gala, Ratajkowski looked radiant in a metallic Marc Jacobs gown that moved like liquid gold. The precious metal theme was also front and center in her bronze AF makeup.
May 2019: Emily Ratajkowski’s Angelic Met Gala Moment Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
At the 2019 Met Gala, Ratajkowski continued to declare her devotion to nearly naked dresses and looked heavenly while doing so. Her custom Dundas gown featured flesh-tone mesh and sequins that seamlessly blended in with beads on Ratajkowski’s feathery headpiece.
June 2019: Emily Ratajkowski With A Bouncy Bob ANGELA WEISS/AFP/Getty Images
At the 73rd annual Tony Awards, Ratajkowski served up vintage glamour, thanks to a fresh haircut. Previously, the model had mainly kept her locks long, so the shift to a bouncy lob with side-swept bangs felt fresh and also, in a way, declarative. This many inches shorn says, “It’s my hair and I’ll cut it off if I want to.”
November 2021: Emily Ratajkowski’s Clueless Homage MediaPunch/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images/Getty Images
Who doesn’t love a Cher Horowitz moment? Ratajkowski’s plaid blazer, white boots, and mini skirt moment managed to work as an inspired
Clueless homage and a high fashion moment. October 2022: Emily Ratajkowski In A Fishnet Dress Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Nothing says, “I’ve reclaimed my divine femininity,” like the level of confidence Ratajkowski exuded in this
fishnet Tory Burch gown. February 2023: Emily Ratajkowski With A Wavy Bob
EmRata stole the show at the Marc Jacobs Runway Show 2023 during New York Fashion Week — and she didn’t even walk the runway. Instead, the actor showed off an entirely new ‘do, experimenting with short bangs and a wavy bob.
February 2023: Emily Ratajkowski With Disco Curls
Days after the Marc Jacobs event, Ratajkowski appeared at the Viktor and Rolf Flowerbomb Party with another standout look. Though the bob didn’t make an appearance, she wowed with bouncy, ‘70s style curls with
curtain bangs. May 2023: Emily Ratajkowski Goes 1920s Flapper
You’ve never seen EmRata look like this before. Though the model is no stranger to sheer and nude ‘fits, she added vintage flapper vibes to her ensemble at the 2023 Met Gala, with the intricate designs of her Tory Burch dress, feathered clutch, and curly ponytail. Her main inspirations: Karl Lagerfeld, Chanel, plus “
a little Audrey Hepburn,” she told Variety of the style of her bangs and a black bow in her hair. Don't miss a thing
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