Essence Black Women in Hollywood Luncheon Red Carpet Rundown

Posted on February 07, 2020

Ladies who lunch! In bold colors and BIG DRESSES! Let’s go judging, shall we?



Aja Naomi King in Prabal Gurung

It’s sharp, it’s matchy, it photographs well. We just could’ve done without the big wreath bow.




Angelica Ross in Celestino

The color’s pretty and the style suits her, but the gown looks so heavy and overwhelming on her.




Billy Porter in Official Rebrand

Love. We’re willing to go out on that branch and say we like it better when he’s playing with gender expectations in fashion rather than serving outright drag.




Ella Balinska in Lanvin

We don’t mind formal shorts at all, but there needs to be some consideration to proportion. That top is pretty fabulous, but it overwhelms her bottom half.




Gabrielle Union in Rosie Assoulin

Fun and bold with a springtime feel to it. Works for us.




Garcelle Beauvais in Tadashi Shoji

We don’t love the textile and we definitely think it’s too short in the hem.




Gina Torres

Sort of a business take on a wedding gown.




Issa Rae in Solace London

The dress is fun. It deserved an equally fun pair of cha-cha heels.




Janet Mock in Prada

Thew floral’s pretty, if perhaps a little too understated for the red carpet. Still not in love with that squared-off style of neckline.




Kerry Washington in Lanvin

Well alrighty then. It’s a lot and we honestly don’t think we can sign off on the idea of hanging little mirrors on leather straps and calling it an outfit, but hey, at least it’s not boring or generic. She’s been working her way through some pretty tricky styles lately and while we don’t quite think she’s been nailing it, we’re increasingly impressed by her commitment to keeping things interesting.




Logan Browning in Valentino

We just can’t get past the white lace. To twee and jarring.




Marsai Martin in Lisou

Love it. She doesn’t always hit the age-appropriate mark, but this is cute and on-point, we think.




Mj Rodriguez in Halpern

Another dress that feels like it’s overwhelming the wearer a little. She does so much better in sleeker styles.



Niecy Nash in Michael Costello

If there’s any lady in entertainment who deserves to step out in an eatin’ dress with an elastic waistband, it’s the Queen of Shapewear herself. We don’t love this – in fact, we kind of hate it – but we can’t get on her case for wanting a little comfort this time.




Storm Reid in Sergio Hudson

Feels a little more grownup than it needs to be and that yellow is not great for her.




Tika Sumpter in Antonio Berardi

It was definitely a night for big dresses and volume. Again, we can’t fault her for wanting comfort or coverage, but this textile sure doesn’t photograph well.






[Photo Credit: Getty Images for ESSENCE, Sara De Boer/]

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