With good reason, I had restrained posting reviews of award show fashion due to the lack of diversity for some time now. People of colour have graced the carpets of award shows before. People of colour have also if not more, worked harder to be there. Yet when the winner is announced, the white nominee walks up to the stage to collect that award. I need to see more representation. We need to see more representation.

Choosing to not acknowledge award shows has indeed been with good reason, great reason. I see people of colour walk, pose, speak at these award shows. It is not enough. I need to see more representation on the actual stage. I need to see more people of colour winning, rather than only being nominated in a category. We need to stop justifying mediocre performances. This year I decided to review the fashion at the Oscar Academy Awards simply because of the increase in PoC. Is it enough? Of course not. Does the world understand how important representation is? No, nearly enough. Is the increase just the beginning? Yes.

Onto the standout looks of the night – Oscar fashion is becoming a reflection of personality more than just donning on a prom like the dress and I am here for it. Metallics, whites and eye-catching cuts seemed to be the trending on the carpet this year. There were hardly any looks I didn’t like, but only a few that made my exceptional list. Of course, my opinion is barely a voice for fashion analysis and critique.

Sofia Boutella did a two texture dress that deserves all the praise. She pulled off the fashion forward Chanel dress in a way that Katy Perry failed her Tom Ford at the Grammy’s. The loose hair, ear cuff and contrasts of silver against white make this a look that she owned completely.

Naomi Harris packed a punch in this sleek Calvin Klein number. A strong dress often only works with soft hair and dainty accessories. We also rarely see short dresses at this award show. She did it both, edgy dress meets quirky personality and I love her for it. Besides, how sleek are her shoes? Risk-taker and the entire look is a definite YES.

I have always thought that Janelle Monáe had such a unique take on the style. A style that stays true to her, stands out on the carpet and keeps us talking long after the show is over. This Elie Saab gown is a masterpiece. The fluidity and structure of this dress, the beautiful mix of metallics against a glistening black is all genius and I can’t express how much I am in love with this dress.

And finally a style icon in the making, Olivia Culpo is a dream in this Marchesa gown. This ethereal look is tied together with black, literally. She took a risk adding a striking purple eye and I am glad she did. She took a dress we were bound to see at the Oscar’s and elevated it. Delicate done well.

Images are courtesy of Who What Wear