IN or OUT: Salma Hayek in Alexander McQueen

Posted on February 27, 2013

We don’t love this unreservedly, but it’s the first outfit we’ve seen at the Independent Spirit Awards that we didn’t recoil from.

Salma Hayek attends the 2013 Film Independent Spirit Awards in head-to-toe Alexander McQueen.

Alexander McQueen Pre-Fall 2013 Collection [No exact match]/Model: Esther Heesch (NEXT)

Alexander McQueen Black Suede Baroque Punk Skull Peep-toe

Ever since her marriage pretty much forced her into wearing brands that don’t quite suit her, she’s been trying to work this hard-edged fashionista look and it never quite works. See her Oscars dress for an example. You gotta know your role when it comes to personal style and you’ve got to learn not to fight it. Or if not that (because nobody should be bound-by-chains to the body they were born into), learn how to come to a form of detente.

Salma is the very definition of the sultry, sexy Latina, but the McQueens and Guccis she is contractually obligated to favors don’t really play that side of her up, and in a lot of cases, tend to work against it. As we said, no one should be forced to play a role she doesn’t want to, and if she’s revolted by the idea of getting her J Lo on, she shouldn’t be judged for it. We’re not suggesting she sex it up or Latin it up to fit some sort of preconceived idea of her; just that you’re always going to be better off, from a style perspective, playing to your strengths. Turns out she’s awesome at working a “rich bitch” look when she needs to, but that’s not always going to play on a red carpet.

Anyway, we’re rambling here, but our point is that this pretty much works for us. It’s got the high-fashion cred and slight edge that she clearly favors, but it’s got a soft femininity that plays to her looks well. Our first impulse is to say the bag and the shoes are too heavy for the look, but we’re reconsidering. That belt needs some visual balance and the dress needs something to prevent it from looking too doll-like. This all works for us.



Vote Now!


IN! Agree! Chic and girly-pretty!


OUT! Disagree! Laura Ingalls’ underwear!


Amanda Seyfried’s dog-collar post-Oscars dress was voted OUT by the precious unborn fawns of our comments section, as was movie-mama Anne Hathaway’s droopy, boob-obscuring post-Oscars dress. The PUFs were adamant.


[Photo Credit: Andrew Evans, David Gabber, Emiley Schweich/PR Photos,]

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  • Sobaika

    Unabashedly loving this. I do think she should have done either the shoes or the clutch, not both.

    • procrastinatrice

      Agree. I say keep the pumps ditch the clutch.

      • kschwarting

        Couldn’t agree more.  That clutch looks too big and random for the outfit.

    • MilaXX

       the more I look at it, the more I like it, but I hate all the accessories; belt/shoe & bag.

      • mjude

        also i dont think its a dress for her.  i do like it too.


    • Pants_are_a_must

      I think a smaller clutch might have been better. One of those awesome ones with the knuckle dusters for handles.

    • Jessica O’Connell

       Me too. I think that the entire looks comes together in feminine fierce fabulosity. Alliteration. IN.

  • IN! I love it – it’s a more covered look that works for her shape and doesn’t overwhelm her. I think she looks fantastic. 

  • Tr16ia

    Glad to see Seinfeld’s puffy shirt has found life after reruns.  

    • RescueMe23

      I thought the SAME exact thing!  All she needs is an eye patch.  That’s and OUT for me, BTW

      • dashransome

        me too!!! (on the puffy sleeves – I give the outfit a feeble IN)

      • Sweetbetty

         I thought the sleeves looked longer and puffier on the model; I wonder if Salma didn’t ask for them to be altered a bit.  And I thought of Puffy Shirt as soon as I saw them too.

    • rh33

       My thought exactly!

  • marilyn

    Out.  Not her style and she is too ‘mature’ for this.

  • charlotte

    Looks like my IKEA bedspread, so it has to be OUT.

  • tallgirl1204

    I like the top– a lot– has a little bit of “demure pirate” to it–  but something about the skirt says “I got tired of thinking so I quit.” Would have worked better if it had been cut straighter, I think. 

    • lovelyivy

       Agreed. I think this would have been great with skirt that had less volume.

  • imperfectlaura

    I say IN, but something bugs me about Selma. There are so many brands under the LVMH umbrella, and yet she reverts to McQueen and Gucci far too much IMO.

  • fashionzombie

    IN. She looks great.

  • Considering her body and height this shape shouldn’t work but does.  An “IN” for me, she looks good.

  • MilaXX

    marginal IN. I don’t hate it and it’s better than the droopy version the model is wearing by leaps and bounds. I somehow think the dress would have looked better without the belt and a not as heavy shoe.

  • Out. As you so clearly opined, this really doesn’t serve her well. She just ain’t a McQueen kinda gal.

    • Vlasta Bubinka

      Agree– it looks like a skating costume from The Other Boylen Sister on ice. She’s a virgin lady in waiting with an omega chastity belt doing twizzles down the ice to get away from Henry and his cod piece.

      •  Oh, Vlasta, my dear.  You absolutely SLAY me.  I love this.

        • Vlasta Bubinka

          And you totally want to see that ice show happen now, don’t you? Doesn’t everyone, really?

  • Janet B

    The bag, belt and shoes work.

  • Librarina

    Too young, too white, too awful.

  • Judy_S

    In, though I kind of agree that she is past girly (I liked her Oscars dress, thought it was sophisticated & quietly sexy).  It just looks so good on her, she looks so good in it.

  • Pants_are_a_must

    Those shoes are FAB. The dress actually, in my opinion, echoes the black Tadashi Shoji dress Christina Hendricks rocked a while back. I think this look encapsulates what works best for Hayek: Soft with a hard edge. Attractive, but don’t get on her bad side. Approachable diva, in essence.

    • RebeccaKW

       I like that the dress flatters her curves, but doesn’t draw focus to them.  I absolutely love the sleeves.  I too love the shoes, and I could do without that clutch.

    • MilaXX

       the Shoji dress is what makes me think this would look better sans belt.

      • Pants_are_a_must

        I’m not so sure. If the Shoji dress had been in white, it would’ve probably required some color contrast at the waist too.

  • OrigamiRose

    IN, she looks fantastic and the changes from the model version (especially the shoes) are perfect for Salma’s body and aesthetic.

  • In. Very in.

  • Aly Light

    Those shoes are MEGA. I love this look, and incidentally I kind of love her. IN.

  • jkatkins

    In my head, I get it.  But I can’t get past my gut which says OUT.

  • In.  I liked her Oscar look the next day too.  Every outfit doesn’t have to be about the boobs.

    • It’s in for me as well.  Nice to see a bit  more coverage on Selma.  

  • Annabelle Archer

    IN. Despite the fact that it brings to mind the Seinfeld puffy shirt and a bit of Pilgrim couture.  It’s not a fail, but it’s not my favorite. 

  • I love it unreservedly.  The change in the neckline from the runway version suits her and she looks clean, crisp, elegant and feminine.  I think the white is spectacular with her coloring.

  • Sara__B

    The styling seems wrong to me, and while it’s clear the dress was altered for her petite height,  I wish they’d given her some extra inches in the bustline. OUT.

  • I just don’t think this is her dress. OUT.

  • teensmom99

    OUT. The neckline is just wrong on the well-endowed.  I speak from experience.

  • DiverK

    Out.  I was thinking sister wife chic, but Laura Ingals Wilder underwear works too.

    •  Man, I have to read all the comments before leaving mine. I got sister-wife, too.

  • Trisha26

    OUT. Can’t stand the sleeves. At least she’s not wearing the Pilgrim boots.

  • msdamselfly

    At the awards ceremony it looked washed out and colorless

  • another_laura

    I was on the fence until I read T Lo’s “Out” commentary, when I leaned toward “out.”  However, I just really love those danged shoes, so IN.

  • Out. Don’t like the dress no matter how it is styled.  Looks warm, though.

  • BeeBeauNYC

    IN  – cute outfit  and LOVE the hair – so relaxed looking. 

  • Terrible_Person

    IN. Not the sort of look I associate with Salma Hayek, but it somehow suits her. The dress is lovely and I like the shoes, they seem fun. The clutch I could do without.

  • IN. Love the brows, Salma!

  • OUT and I would make this a candidate for “not your dress”.  It’s got a very twee feel to it that Salma isn’t pulling off.  I like this dress so much more on the model…in fact, I prefer the model’s neckline and hem.  And I probably stand alone but am loving the model’s chunky shoes!  One Hollywood’s young next-in-line girls would look fabulous in this get-up, but for Salma, I can’t.

  • VioletFem

    IN! Agree! Chic and girly-pretty!

  • elleg929

    OUT – All that comes to mind is Jerry Seinfeld saying, “But I don’t wanna be a pirate!”

  • “But I don’t wanna be a pirate!”

  • Kathy_Marlow

    I love it, IN

  • LadyCelia

    It’s a bit twee for a woman her age. 

  • appliquer

    In, because it is a pretty dress and she’s gorgeous. I would prefer it in a more saturated color – say royal blue – on her. And my first thought at the picture was “puffy shirt” Seinfeld.

  • IN.  The magic of black and white works so well with her coloring!!!  

  • bailey debruynkops

    in. LOVE the sleeves.

  • IN. Extra points for lack of baby heads and good fit. It’s been a while for Salma here. 

  • i feel like her sleeves are competing with her boobs and giving her a weird shape. fitted sleeves would have been a dif story but this is an OUT

  • Tatiana Luján

    Absolute IN. I love the dress and the hair.

  • IN. I love the sleeves and the shape of the dress, even though if I had her body, my boobs would be on display like my name was Smithsonian. And it’s a nice, creamy white, that really looks nice with her skin tone. 

  • In. It suits her figure so much better than a lot of what she wears. She’s such a beauty and her clothes so rarely reflect it.

  • lizajane1776

    In. I would have loved to have seen this in front of something other than white, so we could see details. The pumps are fun, but the clutch is just…meh.


  • DTLAFamilies

    HUGE IN.

  • BazoDee

    Out- just not loving this.

  • In, the only thing I don’t like about the dress are the sleeves. 

  • i think it’s too twee for a lady of a certain age.

  • jmorino08

    In! She wears it better than the model!

  • tereliz

    Love everything but the clutch, actually. Am I crazy or are those sleeves really frigging awesome? The way they’ve been adapted from the runway look is so romantic without being too literal. And I’m a sucker for those shoes. 

  • IN. I think she worked the hell out of it.

  • IMNAngryLiberal

    OUT — not a bad dress, but not her dress.

  • mhlmh

    in. puffy shirt! avast ye maties!

  • MissMariRose

     I like it. IN

  • neofashionista


  • It looks like something a Sister-Wife would wear if she really wanted to be daring.

    So, yeah. That’s an out. 

  • harleydear

    IN and I want those shoes. I would be so good to them. 

  • librarygrrl64

    IN. She looks great.

  • alyce1213

    IN. I like the way she looks.  Her chestal area doesn’t look as squished as it usually does.
    But I’m on the fence about the belt.  I feel like the dress needs something to break up the white, and it is a beautiful belt, but not so good for this.

    Why not a skinny little black belt?

  • mhleta

    IN. She’s wearing it much better than the model. (The model looks like she stole the sleeves from Jerry Seinfeld’s Pouffy Shirt episode.) I will say that the dress is not ideal for this particular background. (Do they know what they’ll be standing in front of ahead of time? I always wondered.) I give this an IN because it’s both ladylike and edgy, which really suits her. (PS Hated her Oscars look. I never what to see her in a topknot ever again.) I think I’ve used my parentheses quota for the day.

  • Lilak

    Whatever one may think of the suitability – even the fit – of these dresses: She’s been looking quite well-proportioned, rather less top-heavy recently.
    I wish she’d share the brand and model number of the ‘minimizer’ support garments she’s been wearing, as a public service!      

  • B_C_J

    The only reason she is somewhat pulling this off is because she is unbelievably beautiful.  Otherwise, this outfit looks fluffy. Perhaps it would have improved if the skirt were narrow. Then the sleeves would make the statement they are intended to do.

  • rainwood1

    OUT.  Don’t like the dress, don’t like the belt, don’t like the shoes.  This may not be her look, but she married the head of a fashion empire so knew what she was getting into.  Literally. 

  • kimmeister

    IN!  The hair and makeup aren’t great, but the outfit is working like gangbusters.

  • Imasewsure

    Styling is dull but she looks good. Much prefer her version over the fussy one on the model. IN!

  • Judy_J

    This is SO not her dress.  She looks rather absurd.

  • Jangle57

    I like this, love the pumps – but just am not sure if it’s Salma.  Looks too girlish for her – maybe lost the sleeves?  But I don’t hate it, so IN

  • lalahartma


  • Cynica

    I wore this for my first communion in the 1970s.

  • up with pod people

    Love! I adore bishop sleeves and a double one is too luscious.

  • geans

    Package this up and send it off to Taylor Swift so we can “of course” this one. 

  • Adriana_Paula

    IN.  I love her in a skirt with a little volume.

  • PeggyOC

    In.  And I’m glad she switched out the booties in favor of the pumps.

  • j_anson

    In. Acceptable.

  • Le_Sigh

    I also like that they got rid of the second sleeve pouf.  Its still interesting and looks way less like a pirate’s costume.

  • In. Love the belt.

  • Lilithcat


    She looks like mom playing dress-up in her 10-year-old’s clothes.

  • AViewer44

    It looks Ike Laura Ingalls’s underwear on the model, but not on Salma. The mixture of hard vs. soft is just terrific!

  • Joyce VG

    IN. I like it because I like all the separate parts of it, but not necessarily all together though.

  • fringebenefit

    IN! Breathtaking. Not a look I would usually like, but she is making it work. 

  • Not loving the pirate sleeves, but otherwise it works. I’ll say IN, in balance.

  • Qitkat

    I don’t like this. And she seems to have rather a pained, unhappy face here. Her striking looks call for softness, v or strapless necklines, pretty necklaces.  A Gucci dress she wore to last year’s Cannes (popped up on *you might also like*) is much more flattering.

  • MaryAtRealityTea

    I love the dress, but I don’t love the accessories paired with it. I’ll give it an IN though. 

  • In. Fresh and sexy.

  • In! She looks like someone who took confirmation very seriously, but knows how to get her freak on nowadays! Are those really flaming gold skulls on the shoes? Awesome!

  • Eclectic Mayhem

    In.  Love her.

  • crash1212

    IN. I think she looks great and I’m not normally a fan of the larger busted people (of which I am one) wearing such a high neckline. I think all of this totally works on her. There’s balance of softness and edge, I love the black and white, and knowing that those gold thingies on the shoes are skulls just makes me love them more. Nicely done!

  • Kristy Evans

    I love it. The sleeves are a little weird, but it fits her beautifully and that belt is KILLA. IN.

  • Mmm. Tough call but, OUT. If only it wasn’t white. I do like the shoes a lot, though.

  • Alyssa

    Out. I can’t pinpoint why, but something about this look isn’t working for me. I’m just not digging it.

  • momogus

    A mild IN. The proportions are great for her, but I don’t love how busy the dress is and I really don’t like how heavy the accessories are.

    • A mild in. Perfect way I feel also.

  • guest2visits

    This all works beautifully for her, I think. It even looks better on Salma than the model.
    It is both feminine and soft but structured, and on her curvyness it is perfect. 
    And how many people can wear skull-top heels and still be so completely girly about it?

  • IN, I love it.

  • trisker

    OUT.  Don’t like it at all, on her or off her.  Heavy fabric full skirt and puff sleeves, no.

  • karena10

    Out.  I had that dress in junior high.

  • capybara_cafe

    Maybe if it were a color. As it is now it looks like she stole it from Elle Fanning.

  • IAmJ

    Don’t really like these shoes at all but the rest of the look is lovely. So IN.

  • oohsparkley!


  • altalinda

    Out.  The dress is too precious and young for the fabulous, chic, mature Ms. Hayek.

  • Zippypie

    OUT.  Twee as fuck, a phrase I usually don’t associate with beautiful Salma.

  • StephanieLovesTLo

    I love those shoes and feel ambivalent about the rest of it.

  • Crystal

    I think she looks beautiful, it’s my favorite look I’ve seen on her in a really long time.

  • girliecue

    I am livid that the designers are bring back the puffy sleeve. Salma at least had the sense to modify her sleeves. Even though I wouldn’t be caught dead in anything she has on – not that designers are throwing their wares at me – she looks nice. Which, for someone as gorgeous as Salma, is sort of damning with faint praise. In, but with small letters.

  • DinahR

    IN.  Very pretty and I like the edits that she made.  Giving the sleeve cuffs and shirt-tail hem the axe.  

  • formerlyAnon

    Out, but I blame the mild fashion PTSD it brings on. So, don’t go by me.

    Back in the mists of time, I detoured on a work trip to meet my then-boyfriend for a weekend jaunt, & he surprised me with a (VERY) fancy dinner. His mom (perhaps fearing his plan not to warn me might have a sartorial downside) sent with him a light, summery dress she had been fitting to me.  I had thought it was going to be a jeans & beach weekend, so all I had were BLACK work shoes & accessories & some awful cheap suits, and running shoes & hiking boots and flat almost-flip-flops beach sandals.  So my lovely summery frock was worn with practical clumpy shoes and a slightly too heavy belt and too-large purse, all in black.

    Being young, I felt conspicuous and out of place and terribly dressed and my mood cast a damper on the big surprise.

    So my visceral reaction to this is negative and cannot be trusted.

  • IN .  Totally IN

  • bd73

    in. it’s demure and edgy and i think those sleeves have a decidedly latin influence. latin/spanish culture is heavily influenced by catholicism and the mediterranean. this is some sharp fusion.

  • BrightsideSusan

    Reminds me of all the Laura Ashley dreck from my youth – yuck.

  • Lizzyisi

    In! The shape works for her and the belt/shoes make it more grown up.

  • IN. It’s different for her, but it goes in the right direction taste-wise, IMO. All too many stars go different and tacky, which, no. 

  • libraangel

    IN. She’s as cute as a pimiento

  • Lisa_Cop

    Small in. When I watched the Spirit Awards on TV I thought it looked a little twee but it looks much better in these stills.

  • margaret meyers

    In.  She looks lovely.  Marriage and motherhood have suited her.

  • golden_valley

    Out.  She has the wrong body type for this dress.   I liked her Oscar dress.

  • demidaemon

    IN. I think she looks pretty good here, especially given her record for trainwrecks. Don’t love the bag though.

  • quiltrx

    OUT…because (as someone else pointed out) I can’t unsee it–it’s Seinfeld’s Puffy Shirt in dress form.

    Those shoes, however, are FIERCE.

  • conniemd

    Out. Too much of the ingenue look for a mature woman as sultry/sexy as Selma.

  • PeaceBang

    I’ll recoil for you. Out.

  • jw_ny


    I immediately thought of the Seinfeld puffy shirt…see that I’m not alone.  A ll I can think of was Jerry saying’ but I don’t wanna be a pirate!”  XD


  • In. One of her best looks in awhile.

  • ojosazules


  • Wow, who would’ve looked at the original dress and thought: Selma. And high, round necklines are so tricky when you have big boobs. So I give her an IN for carrying this off. 

  • Love this!

  • lrhoff

    She looks great!  Way to make her mandatory brands work for her…

  • IN! I LOVE this. So much that I want one for myself, please. 

  • JauntyJohn

    In — by a hair. But even though they may not have worked for the Event, and the shoes she’s wearing are fine, I prefer the model’s crazy If-Pilgrims-Had-Go-Go-Boots footwear.

  • GTrain

    Nice try but OUT.

  • IN. Like this so much better than that get-up she had on at the Oscars.

  • samo_samo

    In…I like the look. It could have gone Pilgrim in a bad way, but it looks Pilgrim chic on her.

  • RzYoung

    IN this is utterly perfect on her, flove the sleeves

  • IN. Wish I owned this myself

  • Louise Bryan

    Keep the shoes, ditch the clutch.  IN

  • Candigirl1968

    A white that doesn’t scream bride.  Interesting looking.  Maybe a B+.  

  • jesuiskate

    I’m voting IN for the crazy fantastic shoes, and wearing a visually interesting white dress.

  • carolie_king

    IN.  Love the shoes.  Much better on her than the model version.

  • That dress just looks so pretty and comfortable. Is that so wrong?

  • I like it on the model but not on Salma, the model is all Vermeer realness, Salma is all highschool production of Snow White realness (not a terrible thing but I think a little too youthful for her?).

  • In. Pretty and just enough edgy.

  • Thathoodwink

    In! And I also thought of Seinfeld when I saw the runway version.

  • Lola67

    IN! I wish I looked like this every day. Pretty, and feminine, but be careful because I could still rip your eyes out with a single glance.

  • IN! I like it a LOT, but this seems more like a lunch-with-the-ladies dress (and accessories) than an awards show dress. 

  • peachy

    OUT: please don’t let the prairie look come back. i’m ovah laura ingalls wilder, tyvm.

  • I would commit murder for those shoes, but the bag is way too big.

  • I’ve always liked the way Salma looks when she is dressing for Salma. Grey cashmere v-neck sweater, black trousers..She doesn’t wear a lot of hair or makeup either but she looks well groomed.

    I wish she would take her own ethos to work with her, I would like to see her in “boring” Armani type clothing on the RC.

  • prettybigkitty

    In.  Works for me.

  • warnerave

    IN..but the sleeves need to go..

  • cleep1000

    All I can think of when I look at the version the model is wearing is the “puffy shirt” from Seinfeld. It looks okay on Salma. At least her boobs aren’t all squished like they usually are. In, I guess.

  • chitowndg

    In, although I would have preferred a different belt.

  • nerdykitten

    IN!!!!! ALL THE IN!!!!

    • Comus

      Love this enthusiasm : IN !!! to infinity and beyond.

  • pdquick

    Love the silhouette, love the belt, love the length. The only thing is, maybe a little color in the shoe would have been nice. But seriously IN, verging on WERQ.

  • JJ513

    In, love this look on her, she looks younger

  • LambeeBaby

    Giving it an “OUT” for her. Although I love it, it’s not HER dress.

  • bringbackbeatles

    IN! Love, loe, love! I am all about skulls, so the shoes make me smile. It’s totally my style, so I get it.

  • IN! I think the belt really did its job here. You make us proud, Salma.

  • Salma, why are you hiding your magnificent boobs?

  • ccm800

    In – more or less