- Posted by Cortex Beauty Blog
- On May 9, 2018
The Met Gala. You’ve heard of it. But what is it and what does it mean to the beauty business world? And how do they get so many celebrities in one place, wearing such amazing clothing with such unique hair stylings? We’re going to explain it all!
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Met Gala is officially called the Costume Institute Gala of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and is sometimes referred to as the Met Ball. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, “the Met”, is an historic, huge museum, in the heart of New York City, with its famous steps situated on 5th Avenue and abutting the most iconic sections of Central Park.
One of the most significant collections of the Met is its huge inventory of famous and not so famous articles of clothing, part of its Costume Institute.
The Met Gala
The Met Gala is an annual fundraising gala for the Costume Institute. The Met Gala serves two purposes: raising funds for the Institute and also it marks the grand opening of the Institute’s brand new exhibit.
Who Gets to Attend the Met Gala?
The Met Gala is by invitation only. The planning committee this year was chaired by Anna Wintour (the editor of Vogue), who has hosted for many years. Her co-chairmen were Amal Clooney, Donatella Versace and Rihanna. Quite a quartet! If you’re invited, be prepared to pony up. Each ticket costs $30,000, and more if you decide to sponsor a table or take on a leadership role in terms of giving.
What’s in the Costume Institute Exhibit?
The exhibit’s contents dictate the theme of the MetBall. Past themes have included “Fashion in an Age of Technology”, “Superhoeroes: Fashion and Fantasy” as well as collections honoring The House of Chanel and Gianni Versace. The theme is kept a secret for as long as possible, but is then revealed to the attendees at the last possible moment.
The 2018 theme of the Costume Institute’s exhibit was “Heavenly Bodies: Fashion and the Catholic Imagination”. The actual exhibit includes hundreds of items that showcase sacred religious garments, including many on loan from the Vatican, some of which have never left Rome!
What to wear to the Met Gala:
The tradition of the Met Gala is for the attendees to dress up in a way that reflects the theme, and this year was no exception.
From Sarah Jessica Parker’s elaborate headdress that looks the like the inside of a church to Rihanna’s papal-inspired headwear to Ariana Grande’s Sistine-Chapelish gown, the celebrities really went all-out. Some people interpreted the theme in their own way. Actress and writer Lena Waithe wore a giant rainbow cape to assert the rights and struggles of LGBTQ people, often times at odds with the Catholic Church.
You can see some of the greatest hair stylings here:
And if you’re interested in the amazing fashion, check out this Vogue pictorial.
So, what does the Met Gala have to do with you?
Well, if you can’t pony up the $30K, you have to admire the goings-on from afar. But, the day after the Gala, the exhibit is open to the public and a great reason to show up to the Met if you’re in New York.
But there’s more. The hairstyles at the Met are typically the most “out there” styles. Stylists and regular people may not be able to replicate these styles. But, the hairstyles on display can inspire us, lead us to think about what really is beautiful (beyond just last year, but even in previous centuries) and think about the role of clothing and beauty in our lives and the lives of our ancestors. They can inspire creativity and help us think outside of the box.
In short, the Met Gala is a fancy way to raise money so that a great institution can continue to display beauty.
Ultimately, that’s pretty cool.