While the red carpets of awards season tend, beauty-wise, to be tasteful to the point of homogeneity (a burnished smokey eye here, a dusty pink lip there, with the occasional flash of scarlet or graphic liner to add a smattering of excitement), the Met Gala couldn’t be more divergent in its beauty ethos. On the first Monday in May, anything goes when it comes to your hair, make-up and costume, whether that’s Cara Delevingne offsetting a freshly dyed pink pixie crop (she had to top last year’s shimmering silver buzz cut, after all) with yellow eyeshadow and a medieval headdress, Zendaya’s new red crop or Rihanna dressing up as an actual Pope, complete with Maison Margiela mitre. Whatever the theme, it always makes for a marvellously eclectic best dressed list - and an equally exciting beauty line-up.
For this year's event, themed around Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination, our favourite looks seemed to nod to the dress code with extravagant, often bejewelled hair accessories, while keeping things a little more low key on the make-up front, often cohering around a statement lip or eye colour (but never both). Balance, it seems, is the secret to a striking Met Gala beauty moment...
See some of our favourite Met Gala beauty looks in the gallery below...
Kerry Washington took the 'heavenly' in this year's exhibition title and ran with it, in terms of both her liquid-gold gown and her beauty look: brushed out curls, eye-catching hair jewellery, subtly sculpted brows and rose pink lips.
For her first Met Gala, American Honey star Sasha added extra drama to her up-do with a silver chain embellishment, while keeping her eye make-up classic in burnished bronze and gold.
What's a Met beauty round-up without a hymn to Blake Lively's latest red carpet look, which is definitive proof that warm, reddish tones needn't be kept to the lips: done subtly, they can look just as good on the lids.
Did we mention we're glad that Emma Stone has reverted to her redhead ways? We're going to reiterate that sentiment all the same, while noting that a super-loose, super-low pony tail is a novel way to style mid-length hair for the red carpet.
There's a lot to take in when it comes to Bella Hadid's latest Met look, but don't let the latex and leather of the main event overshadow the beauty details: the gold clips crowning an intricate up-do, the touch of gold on the lids and the Glossier campaign-worthy skin.
Yes, the beaded coif automatically draws the eye, but so do the '20-style finger waves, the dramatic brows and the berry shade on the lips. A look that's coming to a royal wedding near you? We can only hope...
Jasmine's long floral braid is the Met style we're most likely to try this summer: a 2018 spin on the flower garland, perhaps?
This year's co-host stuck to her preferred red carpet formula when it came to her Met make-up - powerful brows, subtle bronzes on the eyes and an orange-red lip - while wearing her hair in a laidback updo that we'd love to see her wearing more often.
Once again, Gigi proves that outré doesn't always equal effective on the steps of the Met: a more polished version of her go-to California girl beauty look can prove just as head-turning as graphic liner or gothic lips.