Taylor Swift always makes a splash at the VMAs. Whether she’s performing on a New York City subway, getting Kanye’d by Kanye, or reinventing herself as a full-on pop star, much of Taylor’s trajectory to trendsetter and superstar can be traced back to her VMA looks. Seriously. Check out every look Taylor has blessed us with at the VMAs below.
Taylor’s first VMA appearance was way way back in 2008 when she was just a teenage country crooner hosting the VMA pre-show. While Taylor’s style has since undergone quite the evolution since she first showed up on our radar, one thing has stayed with her: her love of all things that glitter. She arrived at the VMAs wearing a gold sequined dress and interviewed a very young Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus.
She then traded in her gold dress for an off-white strapless one. It’s classic old-school Swift, whose at-the-time uniform was flowy, summery dresses at all times.
For the 2009 show, Taylor stepped up her glam game, wearing a sequined Kaufmanfranco gown with Lorraine Schwartz diamonds. We were also formally introduced to Taylor’s now-signature red lip.
That year, Taylor performed “You Belong With Me” outside New York’s famous Radio City Music Hall in a red A-line dress.
A barefoot Swift performed “Innocent” at the following year’s show, wearing—you guessed it—a beige strapless dress not all that different from the one she wore on her first VMA red carpet.
Taylor took a break from the VMAs in 2011 to basically change her entire look. When she arrived at the 2012 show, her hair was straight and she traded in her usual dresses for an all-white suit. Gone were the strapless A-line dresses of Taylor Swift lore. This was one of our first sightings of Pop Taylor™, and she wore POWER SUITS.
Taylor changed into shorts, a red and white striped top, and with red shoes to perform “We Are Never Getting Back Together” from her album “Red.” Girl loves a good theme.
In case you had any doubts about Taylor Swift being a sophisticated woman, she showed up to the show in 2013 wearing a sleek Hervé Léger by Max Azria gown. Look at the pose.
She also matched with BFF and future “Bad Blood” co-star Selena Gomez who also wore a navy gown to the awards.
She looked so good Drake wasn’t allowed to make eye contact when he bowed to her.
Taylor took home the Moonman for Best Female Video for “I Knew You Were Trouble.” Bonus: The glitter of Daft Punk, Pharrell, and Nile Rodgers’ suit jackets made for a pretty sick backdrop for this, right?
2014 was basically the year of Taylor Swift. She officially made her transition into full-fledged pop star and had the unitard to prove it. She showed up to the red carpet wearing this Mary Katrantzou number and people. took. notice.
Of course, Taylor still has a love affair with sparkles and changed into this shimmery, fringed two-piece to perform a “Great Gatsby” version of “Shake It Off” during the show.
What was your favorite Taylor Swift VMA look?
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