Naomi Osaka is proving she can make a splash off the court. The tennis star—-who recently announced she was taking a break from the sport—rocked an extreme look on the 2021 Met Gala red carpet at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. And while her Louis Vuitton dress was bold, it was her hairstyle that was most striking.
The 23-year-old's tresses featured oversized twisted loops on top with two large side pieces sticking straight out. This was topped off with embedded red flowers and crystals. The look perfectly complemented her Nicolas Ghesquiere dress that featured a turquoise-and-purple dragon motif, high-waisted red bow and black halter cape with endless ruffles. She paired it perfectly with black heeled booties.
Not only did this mark Osaka's first appearance at the major fashion event, but she also landed the coveted role of co-chair. She shared the title with other newbies Billie Eilish, poet Amanda Gorman, actor Timothee Chalamet, and, of course, Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour.
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This major style moment comes just weeks after Osaka made her SI Swimsuit cover debut. Fellow SI Swimsuit cover models Megan Thee Stallion and Leyna Bloom also made their Met Gala debuts. The rapper donned a pale pink Coach gown with oversized ruffles but kept her hair more simple with a vintage glam look. All the same, it still took the performer hours to get ready. "Very different than getting ready for my regular rapper lifestyle," she told ET. "We've been in glam since yesterday!"
While both SI Swimsuit cover stars dazzled on the red carpet, some of the most talked about looks had to be the giant circular Harris Reed headdress worn by Iman, Grimes' sword, book and metallic face mask, and Lil Nas X's three separate outfits.
The annual Costume Institute Gala is like the Oscars of fashion and is traditionally held on the first Monday of May. But it was postponed until September due to the pandemic. This year's theme "In America" was all about focusing on fashion made in the U.S.
"I've been really impressed by American designers' responses to the social and political climate, particularly around issues of body inclusivity and gender fluidity," Costume Institute head curatro Andrew Bolton told Vogue. "I really do believe that American fashion is undergoing a renaissance."