From Channelling Marilyn To Embracing Provocative Punk, Here’s A Look At Madonna’s Style Evolution


Queen of pop. Cultural Figure. Mother of them all. Madonna’s career trajectory and triumphant discography has cemented her status as one of the industry’s most prominent musical figures. After an early life that had plenty of upheavals, her debut studio album Madonna skyrocketed her brand value leading up to her earning the title of the best-selling female recording artist of all time in the years to come.

Apart from her musical prudence, the Frozen hitmaker is equally revered for one thing – her sartorial choices. That bullet bra you see today’s fashion girlies sporting so fervently? She did it first. Everyone channeling Marilyn on Halloween? She did it first for her ‘Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friends’ video. She’s always been a trendsetter and hasn’t shied away from the risqué. Here’s taking a look at Madonna’s style evolution over the years.

The Bullet Bra Moment


On April 13, 1990, while on her Blond Ambition tour, Madonna’s  cone bra corset in Chiba, Japan grabbed eyeballs and invited controversy galore. Designed by French designer Jean Paul Gaultier, the ensemble was influenced by 1980s street style and 1950s bullet bras, and is, to this day, talked about in fashion schools when the debates move to iconic fashion moments.

Monroe Calling


It’s giving…old Hollywood glamour. Madonna arrived at the 1991 Oscars after-party on Michael Jackson’s arm, sporting blonde curls à la Marilyn Monroe, crimson lips, dark eyebrows, and a necklace of diamonds. The fur add-on? Marilyn would’ve been proud.

Desi Reckoning


A six yard staple donned by a mainstream pop culture icon back in the 90s? This was major. Fans throughout the Indian subcontinent and the NRI diaspora had cutouts of this one specific outing of hers all thanks to the representation aspect of it. Naomi sure is the torchbearer, but Madonna did it first.

Hollywood Bombshell


Taking a break from her suggestive and OTT sensibilities, Madonna took this Dolce & Gabbana sultry satin number for a spin at the 2007 Vanity Fair Oscars Party. The memo was timeless and très élégante and the pop star delivered sans a doubt.

Sheer Shapeshifting


For the 2016 MET Gala, Madonna was lensed arriving at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in a Givenchy ensemble influenced by bondage whilst featuring body jewellery, body lace, and thigh-high leather boots. A hard pill to swallow for the naysayers, the experimental goth maven topped all best dressed lists for the event that year.

Strictly Business

On the eve of the Grammy Awards 2023, Madonna turned to the Spring 1997 Mugler archives for this black suit from the the label’s couture collection titled ‘Les Insectes.’ With a classic Mugler corseted make and a longline skirt with a slit showcasing her fishnet stockings, this goth reminiscence proves how she’s still at the top of her game.

Drip Machine

For the Olivia Wilde helmed Don’t Worry Darling’s after party, Madonna went down the Balenciaga drip route, courtesy the house’s distinctive baggy silhouette defined by the electric blue nylon jacket. Also, sporting pink hair after the age of 60 should be normalised. I’m surely treading down the rainbow route the day I cross that number.

Images via Pinterest and Getty

Also Read: Alia Bhatt’s Style File For Heart Of Stone’s Promotions Is A Masterclass in Pared Down Glamour

- Digital Fashion Writer


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