The Cannes Red Carpet Was Extremely Fun This Year

Winnie Harlow poses in her green dress at Cannes.

While perhaps the most exciting fashion-related headlines to come out of the 2018 Cannes Film Festival were those regarding Kristen Stewart’s decision to walk barefoot up the red carpet stairs, the overall outfit lineup was also worth dissecting. Cannes definitely has one of the more exciting red carpets in the grand scheme of red carpets, likely a result of the legacy left behind by Cannes regulars (and noted fashion risk-takers) of yore like Diana Ross and Sharon Stone. This year’s offering was no exception. Eager to hear which style statements in particular caught other peoples’ eyes, I asked nine other Man Repeller editors and contributors to share their favorite looks. The below list is but a small sampling of the sartorial delights that ensued, though, so be sure to click through the whole slideshow and comment your personal faves as well.

1.Marion Cotillard in Adam Selman

Who picked this look? Harling Ross (me!), Fashion Editor

Why was it your favorite? Marion Cotillard has been crushing this year’s Cannes red carpet like a can of Sprite. While I originally fell in lust with her convention-flouting look featuring flat (!) lace-up Nicholas Kirkwood boots (remember when the film festival made headlines two years ago for turning away women who tried to wear flats on the red carpet?), this spectacular gingham number designed by Adam Selman was ultimately my favorite look. Not only am I extremely enamored with the concept of wearing bloomer-like shorts in a black-tie setting, but I’m also obsessed with lime green right now, so the accents on her outfit really hooked me. Separately, I am now officially in the market for a pair of red strappy high-heel sandals.

2.Ava DuVernay in Greta Constantine

Who picked this look? Nora Taylor, Managing Editor

Why was it your favorite? While far from the most dramatic look at the festival (she was supporting Spike Lee’s new movie) she just looks so dang good. The fit is perfect, the colors are amazing and really work for her and the lipstick tops it all off. It just seems like the perfect look for when you don’t want to be the center of attention but you want to casually remind everyone that you’re stunning.

3.Lupita Nyong’o in Christian Dior

Who picked this look? Tahirah Hairston, Contributing Writer

Why was it your favorite? Is it safe to say that Lupita is the Queen of Cannes? I mean not trying to exaggerate, but who will ever forget that green Gucci dress that she twirled around in, effectively breaking the internet in 2015? No one. This year her outfits have been a little more subtle, but definitely still show-stopping. I’m always wary of dresses that have too much going on because I find they both look uncomfortable and try-hard, but in this Dior Couture dress with a cage-y sheer turtleneck top half and a ruffle bottom, Lupita looks effortless. Everything she’s wearing looks works together like a symphony, from the teardrop earrings to the hint of brick-red eyeshadow to the off-centered mohawk afro that adds just the right amount of edge to her very feminine look. Lupita truly understands the importance of doing the most, but also knows when she’s done just enough.

4.Laura Harrier in Louis Vuitton and Damaris Lewis in Off-White

Who picked this look? Amelia Diamond, Head of Creative

Why was it your favorite? Full disclosure: I don’t think this Louis Vuitton dress would have been my first choice had it been worn by someone else, but Laura Harrier can do no wrong in my book when it comes to style. Where the dress itself is concerned, there was something about the overall simplicity, the kilt-like wrap over the pleats, and the black ribbon in contrast against the peachy colored fabric that really called to me. It was pretty. It didn’t make a statement, but it’s a case of the wearer wearing the dress rather than the other way around — and because of that, the choice looks deliberate. She looks comfortable in it! Maybe I like this dress because it feels like something I would want to wear.

The real winner here, however, is Damaris Lewis, in a full Off-White runway look: the blazer, the biker shorts, the Off-White x Jimmy Choo shoes. She looks incredible, and I really have a lot of respect for anyone who can make the case for biker shorts in a black-tie setting.

5.Chloë Sevigny in Chanel

Who picked this look? Elizabeth Tamkin, Market Assistant

Why was it your favorite? First of all, she’s wearing Chanel, so it’s very hard not to have your jaw hit the floor. Regardless, though, Chloë is an icon and is one of those people who can transform any look into something special. The dress alone is beautiful, but on her, it has attitude. I also love how the fluted hem hits her lower leg at the exact right spot to showcase her pumps. 

6.Thandie Newton in Vivienne Westwood and Donald Glover in Gucci

Who picked this look? Edith Young, Photographer

Why was it your favorite? I love anything that reinterprets classic textiles with contemporary imagery and this dress that Newton made in collaboration with Vivienne Westwood does just that: The elegant draping doesn’t reveal it immediately, but the print on Newton’s gown features Star Wars figurines from her personal collection — all the black characters to ever appear before her in the Star Wars franchise. Westwood made the gown sustainably, and if you need me I’ll be melting at the sight of Newton standing with Donald Glover, who is truly the definition of dapper in his powder blue suit and white Gucci loafers.

7. Kendall Jenner in Schiaparelli

Who picked this look? Juliana Salazar, Contributing Writer

Why was it your favorite? For someone wearing a completely sheer dress, I think Kendall looked really elegant. The over-the-top shoulders and tiered tulle ruffles convey an old-school, non-cheesy Hollywood glamour that you don’t really see anymore (or at least not often). Cannes Film Festival is probably the only place a look like this doesn’t seem too extreme, so I’m glad she went all-out. Also, please note the embellished seahorse on her dress and belt buckle. I do wish she was wearing different earrings here and black wayfarers but maybe that’s just me.

8.Jane Fonda in Valentino

Who picked this look? Claire Beermann, Contributing Writer

Why was it your favorite? Jane Fonda looks like she just stepped out of a 1920’s dinner party at her midcentury Palm Springs house, an atmosphere I find highly desirable. The coat resembles a robe, the dress reminds me of a (very fancy) nightgown. There’s something very sophisticated, glam and equally casual about it. She looks like this is her carpet while the others are merely her guests – and she exudes the wisdom and coolness of someone who’s never lost her groove. Basically everything I want to be when I grow up.

9.Stacy Martin in Chanel

Who picked this look? Claire again (she couldn’t decide!)

Why was it your favorite? This is a good example of how a relatively simple outfit can be transformed by thoughtful styling. I love all the tiny details: strappy sandals, red nail polish, flashy crystal earrings and cat-eye make-up and hair reminiscent of Megan Draper on Mad Men. More importantly, though, Stacy Martin looks like she got ready in five minutes — which I think is the best thing one can achieve on a red carpet.  

10.Phoebe Waller-Bridge in Mother of Pearl

Who picked this look? Haley Nahman, Deputy Editor

Why was it your favorite? I know I always pick the awkward tea-length dresses but I never get sick of how unusual they look next to everyone else’s floor-length gowns. I’m also having a moment with green (NOT lime green, which, sorry Haring, is the worst of the greens), so Phoebe’s dress stuck out to me for multiple reasons. I love how casual it feels with the low sandals, too, like she could pop over to a pool after and not look too out of place. It’s possible I’m just narcissistic because I would totally wear this, down to the complete lack of jewelry. I feel seen!!! You look great Phoebe!!!

Harling Ross

Harling is a writer and was most recently the Brand Director at Man Repeller.

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