Red Carpet Rundown: Bad Fashion Reigns At American Music Awards 2012

The 2012 American Music Awards, otherwise known as the AMAs, were held last night and… if an awards show takes place in a vaccum and nobody’s around to witness it, did it really happen? We don’t know. But attendees sure as hell tried to make us remember the red carpet.

Despite a mostly bleak guest list, red carpet fashion was a thrill. A cheap, dirty, illicit thrill. Here’s Taylor Swift, Nicki Minaj, Christina Aguilera, Carrie Underwood, Ke$ha, Justin Bieber, Pink, PSY and many more in an impressive collection of very bad things…

We’ll start with No Doubt because the ’90s kid in us loves Gwen Stefani a lot.

…The freethinking adult in us, however, hates this bra-exposing double breasted jacket, paired with the very Victoria Beckham combination of skintight leather pants and ankle breakers.

This is, hands down, the weirdest thing Carrie Underwood has ever worn. Insofar as it is not glittery and beige, we think it’s something.

Insofar as it is everything else, it’s terrible.

This looks more like the Carrie Underwood we know: a modest gal at the debutante ball with extra glitter (this was the red carpet arrival look, the blue thing was for the ceremony and afterparty).

Here’s Brandy! Her makeup is nice and her shoes are atrocious. Remember the Waiting to Exhale soundtrack?

Carly Rae Jepsen does what 25-year-old stylists like to call “old Hollywood glamour.”

Fuck it. If you’re one of the .05% of people in the world who can wear chartreuse (like Nicki Minaj apparently), you should. Sorry not sorry.

Taylor Swift might have pulled off chartreuse with her new fake tan but this boring embellished mini is more to her tastes. She’s pop now, ya’ll.

Ke$ha looks different. Like if she took a shower and dressed up as Gwen Stefani. Maybe? What’s going on here?

Justin Bieber looked ridiculous. Leather shirt? Spiked red loafers (that are probably Louboutins)?

Stacy Keibler did her legs thing. So much embellishment last night.

Pink wore what appears to be lazer cut pewter. Since we’re grading on a steep curve here, it’s actually fine and an interesting color.

Kerry Washington looked exquisite in yellow. We’re not crazy about the peach pumps or fringe (ever) but those don’t change anything.

We don’t understand PSY‘s leather jacket but he’s still holding it down with the wingtips. Also, why did he perform with Hammer?!

Ginnifer Goodwin‘s dress isn’t quite flattering but the real problem here is the Tammy Faye lashes.

Hayden Panettiere‘s dress feels very standard for an awards show of this kind, but we appreciate the small risk she took with the pink lipstick and otherwise minimal makeup. The bold lip/naked face thing is more of a summer look, but she pulls it off nicely.

We don’t like Heidi Klum‘s dress, but her babeliness cannot be denied. Look at that leg!

Amy Heidemann (of Karmin) is known for her ridiculous hair, but now she can be known for ridiculous dresses too. PS NO MORE PEPLUMS PLEASE.

Jenny McCarthy did Pink hair and a glittery skirt and one of those Lanvin tiger belts. Okay.

Presented without comment.

We’re going to go out on a limb and say The Gloss is probably more into The Wanted than One Direction. But at least 3/5s of these jackets are preposterous.

We didn’t think it possible, but this might be the worst Christina Aguilera red carpet blunder of her adult life.

(All photos via Wenn)

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    • the kimberly diaries

      Did anyone else notice that Nicki Minaj’s dress is the exact same shade as her Did It On Em nail polish?
      Just me?

    • Alle

      Okay. Let’s unpack this.

      I understand that sometimes people in a shop (or your stylist, wig wrangler, personal spray tanner, whatevs) will tell you that something looks AMAZING, but secretly you look like a big ol’ pile of crazy. Usually, though, you have a friend–or a dedicated employee who wants the best for you, a la Anna on Downton Abbey–who will tell you to wipe off some of the bronzer and go a little easier on the contouring. Does Christina have nobody who likes her enough to tell her she looks like a tangerine with a bob? That the dress is the most queasy shade of purple one could imagine? She’s gorgeous! How does this keep happening? WHO DID SHE PISS OFF?

    • Tami Scott

      Actually I’m going to give Xtina a pass on the dress because it makes her waist look tiny and she’s covered up her chest for a change.

      But the wig? No.

      And the Oompa Loompa spray tan? Also no. If I could go back in time and prevent the invention of spray tanner/bronzer/self tanner I totally would because it looks good on almost no one.

    • Alexis H

      Nicki killed it, I just love her look. That’s all I really have to say here since you said all the rest for me (except that I call the Biebs as worst dressed, although it’s a really close race).

      • Maggie

        LOVED that dress on Nicki. It’s the same one Julie Bowen from Modern Family wore to the Emmy’s this year, though, but Nicki is one of few who can pull off chartreuse.

    • Erika

      really? that’s the WORST Xtina red carpet blunder? I think this is pretty wholesome considering what other getups she has worn.

      • Alexis H

        I think it’s just the dated ombre trend, unflattering fit, and cheap prom tackiness of it all. If she was wearing one of her trademark skanky crazy things, at least it would be fun, I guess? We could admire her ballsiness? You’re right, she wears a lot of bad stuff.

      • Fabel

        I also think it’s the spray-tanner issue. I mean, she is uncomfortably tan.

      • Ashley Cardiff

        “Uncomfortably tan” I think is very accurate.

      • Ashley Cardiff

        Nothing compares to the fro and fringe of her teen years (see attached), but since her post-”Dirrrty” grown-up career… this is up there.

        Down there?

    • Ashley Cardiff

      Also, how are you guys liking this scrolldown format for red carpet galleries? I feel like it’s better when you can see the looks, but I’ve heard complaints of “scroll fatigue.”

      • mm

        I never used to click on the galleries and it made me sad because I like red carpet rundowns. I click now, if that’s an indication. It was annoying to have to wait for each look to load, depending on internet wherever you are when looking. Since for me that’s class, the internet was slow.

      • Ashley Cardiff

        You’re anti-slideshow?

      • becksss

        Oh I MUCH prefer the scroll-down to the slideshow! :)

      • Ashley Cardiff

        Good to know.

      • Breezy

        Getting used to it! I don’t get scroll fatigue, but I do get impatient and scroll too fast and then mix up who goes with what comments. But that’s really more of a “me” issue :)

    • Sarah Anne Lloyd

      Less occupied with Xtina’s dress, more with J-Biebz’ pants. What are those? WHAT IS THAT FIT? And are they quilted? I am so confused.

    • Boo

      I have to say, Ke-dollarsign-ha’s dress does nothing for her figure- she’s already built with broader shoulders and it only exaggerates that. But more importantly, it’s “y’all”, not “ya’ll”!!! It’s a contraction of “you all”! You non-southerners and your crazy random spellings of things

      • Ashley Cardiff

        I’m from California! We don’t understand this stuff!

      • MR

        Homboldt County? :)

    • alexandra

      I think Justin Bieber has been shopping from Kanye’s womenswear collection.

      And for the record I am pro-new format, although initially it made me nervous because I am old-fashioned and deeply hate change. But maybe slideshow would still be good for the really huge events where you include several dozen people? If I could just read Cardiff red carpet rundowns all day, I would do it. It’s because I live in the south; the most daring fashion choice I saw this year was a girl in white pants in October.

      • Ashley Cardiff

        Yes to the Bieber/Kanye comment and thank you.

    • Jade

      Christina’s skin is darker than Nicki’s…she needs a bath

    • kj

      Jesus, PINK! She looks like she’s off to fight the Uruk-Hai. (that one was for ‘a href=””>Samantha).

      I like the Christina Aguilera’s dress, but I’m a sucker for Ombré and I think it’s super flattering. I just don’t like the spaghetti straps, I think they ruin the dress.



      And finally – Amy Heidemann… Britney Murphy, is that you? :(