Nicole Kidman’s big, bowed, blue Armani at the Oscars: controversial or lovely?

90th Academy Awards (Oscars)

So many women would probably love to wear Armani to the Oscars. I imagine that the House of Armani can be quite choosy about how they decide to dress, and this year, their list was limited. Nicole Kidman got their big statement gown, because she’s Nicole and because she was a presenter for one of the big awards (Screenplay, to Jordan Peele). Many fashion people liked Nicole’s Armani more in motion, on stage, than on the red carpet. I didn’t care for it though – the color is gorgeous, of course, and the fit was beautiful. But it was just the design that bugged me. I’m not into this much “structure” on a woman mid-section. The bow/peplum made her crotch look like a “gift.” And that was just weird. Also: I just can’t with Nicole’s hair at this point. It’s SO BAD. Is it a sh-tty wig or is she really doing this to her hair?

90th Academy Awards (Oscars) - Arrivals

90th Academy Awards (Oscars) - Arrivals

Sally Hawkins was also in Armani Prive. She’s been wearing versions of this dress to most of the awards shows, which I don’t mind – I get the feeling that she’s not a fashion It Girl, nor does she want to be an It Girl. But she knows well enough to simply get a decent Armani dress and wear it to the Oscars, which is fine. She looks fine. There were a lot of cutaways to Sally, and it warmed my heart to see her sitting beside Octavia Spencer, and they looked like they were having a ball together.

90th Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals

I always have such strong feelings about pale white women choosing to wear shades of pale, glittery nude/beige. Allison Williams in this Armani Prive is no different – unlike Sally, Allison does want to be a fashion It Girl, and Allison has a lot of fun dressing up for these events. So why this gown? Why this color? The gown itself is structured beautifully and it’s a perfect “Oscar gown.” I just wish it had been in a darker, richer color. Nude/beige shades were “on trend” for this Oscars though.

The 90th Academy Awards arrivals

90th Academy Awards (Oscars) - Arrivals

Armie Hammer & his wife Elizabeth Chambers both wore Armani as well. There were a lot of individual-looking tuxedos last night and I kind of loved Armie’s velvet tux. He looked good, honestly.

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Photos courtesy of Getty, WENN.

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76 Responses to “Nicole Kidman’s big, bowed, blue Armani at the Oscars: controversial or lovely?”

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  1. SK says:

    I loved Nicole’s dress! I blinked a few times when I saw it but ended up loving it. If anyone can pull this off it is her!

    Sally looked lovely and this is her style.

    Alison looked super washed out. The dress made her face look pasty and she looked unwell – not sure that’s what she was going for! I think she needed more colour on her cheeks and lips if she wanted to wear this boring dress.

    Armie’s suit was great, his wife’s dress was nothingburger.

    • Other Renee says:

      I came here to say the same thing about Allison’s makeup. She needed more vibrancy to make that lovely dress work. She’s too pale. Red lipstick would have helped.

      Normally I’d say no to anything that widens a woman’s hips, but since Nicole basically doesn’t have any, the dress isn’t as awful as it might be on someone else. No to the hair; and for the love of all that is holy, stop with the surgery already! Her face is going to crack if she tightens it any more.

      • SK says:

        Yeah I don’t think many people could pull off Nicole’s dress but she is rocking it.

        Her face… her poor face!! I always look at her dear friend Naomi Watts, who has let herself age gracefully. Naomi might have had a few subtle things done (it’s hard to tell) but she has lines and wrinkles and no really obvious botox and fillers. When you see them next to each other Naomi doesn’t look older than Nicole, she just looks better. Nicole doesn’t look younger she just looks weirder and a bit strange. It makes me sad because she is a beautiful woman and a wonderful actress. At some point she is going to step into “what the hell did Melanie Griffiths do to her face???” territory and will be unable to step it back. I don’t want this for her.

        As for her hair… I get it that redheads go blonder then to white as they age and that it is hard to colour hair that is white to red. However, this looks like a wig anyway so I don’t understand why she doesn’t just go for a red wig? And a better one at that! The red hair would pop so much better with this blue dress and her colouring just looks so much better with red hair. She looks younger, more beautiful, etc.

      • Betsy says:

        @SK – oh is she going grey? I just assumed she was doing the Hollywood blondification since it started so long ago.

      • RedOnTheHead says:

        @SK, as a natural redhead that has gone entirely white, I can say unequivocally that it’s not hard at all to color our hair back to red. I started going white rapidly in my 50s and for a hot minute I thought about just letting it go that way. But I have the exact some coloring as Nicole (wish I looked like her!) and with white hair I looked like a piece of paper with blue eyeholes. So I colored it back to red. I do it myself at home and it’s easy peasy. Nicole would need professional help since her hair is so damaged from all of the bleaching. There’s been a lot of debate on whether she is a natural redhead or a natural blonde. I’ve seen old articles and interviews claiming both, so only she knows. Either way, imho she looks so much better as a redhead. It adds some much needed warmth to her face.

      • SK says:

        @Betsy yes she has said her hair is pretty much all white now. I don’t think redheads actually go “grey”. From my understanding their hair gets lighter and lighter / blonder and blonder in colour until it is just white. I think she tried out blonde in the past and then went back and forth a bit and then she was going white so she just tints it blonde or wears wigs. It looks awful on her though!

        @RedOnTheHead ahhhhh okay then! I have heard other redheads say it is hard to die from white to red but I’ll take your word for it! She is super washed out as a blonde, she she should definitely go back to red! As for her natural colour, I know this because of photos from when she was young in Aus and also from what she herself says. She is a gingery light redhead / dark strawberry blonde naturally. There are some early modelling photos of her where they dyed her hair a deeper red and she did dye her hair various reds over the years but she is a natural redhead. I think at least one of her kids is a redhead too? She has also said that she regrets straightening her hair so much because it ruined her natural curls.

      • Bridget says:

        Just because 1 person’s white hair dyes doesn’t mean another’s does. Nicole has talked about how her hair doesn’t take color the same way – gray/white hair is often a different texture – and red dye wouldn’t take. Not to mention, the re-growth looks terrible. Both my mom and I have hair like that too.

      • Jussie says:

        Well, my now white hair is a nightmare to dye back to red. If I do it at home it looks good for maybe a week, if I get it done at a salon maybe 2. By 3-4 weeks it looks awful, and I don’t have very high standards. By 6 weeks the dye is 90% gone and my hair just has a terrible orange tinge. I gave up because it was just too time-consuming to keep my hair looking presentable while red, and again, I do not have high standards. If I was a celebrity I’d have been pretty much living in a salon trying to keep it looking good.

        Blonde is so much easier. The colour lasts and with the right shade regrowth isn’t much of a problem.

    • Kterr says:

      Nicole’s dress is the same one that Miranda Priestley pursed her lips at 😂😂😂 but she pulled it off

      • Sabrine says:

        Nicole looks lovely other than her hair which looks extremely dry. Some highlights in it would have reduced that solid yellow look.

      • Nuzzy says:

        Exactly! My husband noticed it before I did, but the man loves Devil Wears Prada…

      • hogtowngooner says:

        Haha I had the same thought when I saw it!

        The bow would only really work on someone as tall as Nicole (it would completely overpower a shorter person, I think). I wasn’t feeling it, personally, because I don’t like bows in general on clothing. But the color and cut (minus the bow) and the hair was perfect, IMO.

      • Lama Bean says:

        Yes! I actually said Miranda Priestley would not be happy with Nicole.
        I hate it. I’m sorry.
        She looks like a gift wrapped stick.

    • TwoPac says:

      I think Nicole looked dramatic vs easy, hence the queer wig kind of “worked”. She is statuesque and can pull of evil in that stoney white lady way; some of her characters are so snake eyed, that “cold and structured” is believable.

  2. BaronSamedi says:

    Nicole’s dress is great. But her hair…honestly the hair destroys what could have been an outstanding look.

    • WMGDtoo says:

      Is it a wig. Because if not she needs to get some serious hair treatment. It looks like Doll hair.

      • Aang says:

        Is she filming a role that requires a bad cut or color? Maybe that’s why the wig? It’s awful.

      • Alix says:

        She looks like a Barbie doll. White and impossibly thin.

        I don’t get the nude/beige thing, either. If, on the industry’s biggest night, you want to disappear, why not just stay home?

    • leskat says:

      When I saw Nicole come on screen during a red carpet interview, the first thing I noticed was that awful wig-like hair. It’s so dull and monochromatic and dry looking. She can do good hair, I remember when she used to! But whenever she pulls out this tired, sad yellow blonde color it ruins her.

    • minx says:

      Her hair is just terrible. Why put all the effort into looking good when your hair/wig/whatever looks so fried and flat?

  3. kiddo says:

    Nicole could pull of any dress she wants, this will look absurd in any other person but not Nicole

  4. Lenn says:

    Why o why does she not like her gorgeous natural red curls??

    • lightpurple says:

      She’s 50. The red may actually be gone at this point and, as several of my aunts, cousins and older sister tell me, it is difficult to get the delicate strawberry blonde shade she had. Also, the texture of gray hair can be very different than a younger person’s hair so the curls might be different now too.

    • EMc says:

      It looks so strangely unhealthy to me.. Like I wonder if she’s going through some kind of treatment or on medication that is affecting her hair.. She’s worn obvious wiglets before, and I’ve been wondering that for a while.

    • Sabrine says:

      She has no gorgeous, natural red curls anymore. They have long faded into oblivion so she’s having to dye her hair and perhaps she no longer wants to go red, which of course is understandable. I wonder if this current look is something she and her hairdresser agreed would look great on her, or if it was a mistake and too late to fix?

    • Svea says:

      She says her hair is damaged from coloring. And hair changes with age. A lot. Was at an event with many older women and boy was that a sea of frizzled, dry hair.

      • Aurelia says:

        Just saw her in an aussie mag spread and she had her own hair. It was dreadful, very thin and a mix of white and blonde. The natural curl was really struggling as the texture was so thin. She is wearing a horid wig here. I think years of having a restrictive diet has knackered her hair. Bleaching over the years didn’t help her cause either.

    • Bridget says:

      Her hair is mostly gray now, so the red is gone. Who knows about the curls – gray/white hair often has a different texture, or she’s simply styled it too much over the years and it lost its curl.

      But we’re asking why a woman over 50 doesn’t have the same hair that she had in her 20s, and the answer is pretty obvious.

      • LetItGo. says:

        @Bridget

        I don’t think people are asking why she doesn’t have the ‘same hair that she had in her 20s,’ people just want to know why she has hair that looks worse than an old powdered wig of George Washington’s. Age is not responsible, as Kidman’s hair has been dead and lifeless for the last 15-20 years at least.

        My speculation on what Nicole has done to her hair? I believe she’s been relaxing her naturally curly hair for sometime now. Has she lost her curl pattern? Of course. That’s what happens when you use chemical straighteners. duh. Nicole’s being disingenuous – she wants people to think she just flat irons or something. Right. Secondly, she’s bleaching the f* out of it, leaving it one uniform all over yellow dead color, and not adding in natural looking highlights and lowlights. As a result that double and triple processing on fragile hair, gives you the hair of an antique porcelain doll from the turn of the 19th century.

      • JG says:

        “people just want to know why she has hair that looks worse than an old powdered wig of George Washington’s.”

        OK, I can’t stop laughing now. TY.

      • minx says:

        LetItGo– I’m dying!
        Honestly, I didn’t know she straightened her hair on top of, as you say, bleaching the f* out if it. But it does look like fragile hair from an antique doll. I’m older than her, so I know how your hair changes and gets dry, but her stylist or someone has really ruined hers.

  5. Maum says:

    The blue looked so much better in person! It looked very harsh on print.
    Not a fab of the big bow but she carried it off.

  6. L says:

    If Allison William’s dress was a rich emerald green it would have been a knockout.

    • wildflower says:

      Yes, that would have been gorgeous. I was even thinking if it had been peach to pale coral that would have been an improvement if she had wanted to stay with a lighter color. The design of the dress is actually lovely.

    • minx says:

      I completely loved Allison’s dress and completely hated the color. It was so pretty and you could barely tell because of the stupid nude color.

  7. Pix says:

    Nicole’s dress made her body and neck seem so long. Great color, not a great cut for her.

  8. Miranda says:

    Nicole’s dress was beautiful on her, but I don’t think many others could pull it off. Big bows in the front of a dress only work if you’re really tall and slim.

    My fiance now wants to wear a maroon velvet suit for our wedding. Thanks a lot, Hammer!

    • Esmom says:

      Aw, lol about your fiancé. I loved the suit, but then I am always a sucker for a velvet suit. I was buying my teen sons new pants online this weekend and noticed Old Navy had velvet chinos! I knew my guys would never go for them but hopefully someone does.

      As for the dresses, I really disliked Nicole’s. I just thought it looked too stiff and plastic-y. Allison’s, I thought, was just beautiful if a little too colorless.

      • bella says:

        I love Nicole, but I don’t like any of Nicole’s choices, and I don’t like this dress either. I don’t think that this color is flattering on her.

    • Esmom says:

      Aw, lol about your fiancé. I loved the suit, but then I am always a sucker for a velvet suit. I was buying my teen sons new pants online this weekend and noticed Old Navy had velvet chinos! I knew my guys would never go for them but hopefully someone does.

      As for the dresses, I really disliked Nicole’s. I just thought it looked too stiff and plastic-y. Allison’s, I thought, was just beautiful if a little too colorless. Her hair was so pretty, too.

  9. WhatwasThat? says:

    Does Armie’s wife look a bit too ‘poseur’ or is she well known in the US?
    She seems a bit ..how do you call it..Extra?…

    • Lizzie says:

      she’s the definition of extra. go to her instagram and click and picture. 10,000 tags pop up, even on her kids pictures. she posts something of a makeup artist at their house every single day – she thinks she’s the star. they are a match made in heaven b/c they are both mad thirsty.

    • KBB says:

      She is not well known in the US. I think she was briefly a reporter for an entertainment show like Access Hollywood or something like that and now she owns a bakery in Texas. According to her IMDb Page she’s had a couple of minor guest spots on random shows, but I wouldn’t call her a working actress and she definitely isn’t famous in her own right or anything.

  10. Nicole says:

    I cannot stand Nicole’s dress but honestly she’s the only person I could see wearing it.
    Agree with other commenters about Alison needing brighter makeup. It’s too nude all around.
    Not commenting on armie because he’s still a mediocre baby

  11. Nancy says:

    She looked stunning. Barbie does the Oscars.

  12. Lucy2 says:

    I generally dislike bows, but Nicole is making that work. I do wish she’d go back to her red hair though, I was thought it was so beautiful.

    I love Allison’s gown!

  13. gabbie says:

    nicole can wear anything, she’s so elegant and tall.

    • Nancy says:

      Absolutely agree. She gets prettier with age. That body!! I loved the blue as opposed to her regular red. Couldn’t have been better!

  14. Jkell says:

    Every time I see Alison’s Oscar dress I think “ wow that would have been fire on Beyoncé.”

  15. grabbyhands says:

    I loved Nicole’s gown. Gorgeous color and she is one of the only women who could have carried it off.

    Alison Williams fell prey to the boring, washed out color trend that was in this year-why do these ladies do that to themselves? How does it keep reappearing in popularity? it is so rare that it actually looks good on anyone.

  16. Tig says:

    Nicole pulled it off- just loved this dress on her. The fit was incredible. But her hair-! Agree, if that’s a wig, get a better one. I wish she’d wear her hair shorter.
    Allison did wear a bottle green dress to the Independent Spirit awards, and looked amazing. Dress would be better in a different color.

  17. jess1632 says:

    Armies head looks disproportionate to his body? I’m not the only seeing this photos, am I?

  18. Play it Again says:

    I loved Nicole’s gown, her whole look, really. She’s about the only person who could have pulled that dress off.

    I loved the design of Alison’s dress, but had the same reservations about the color. I thought it would be a knockout in violet, or maybe a deep periwinkle.

  19. Tallia says:

    I liked Nicole’s dress. Her hair is awful and her beautiful face…what did she do? Honestly, it makes me sad.

    • Jayna says:

      I think her face looks fine. No more massive filler or overdone botox. She still does filler in her cheeks, but at least it’s not that chipmunk look she was sporting. Her lips are back smaller again with their natural shape, just a little plumpness. She hasn’t had her eyes done.

      She has a lot of makeup on and not much color to her cheeks. I think it’s that stiff hair style parted down the middle that is probably off-putting. It’s almost like a helmet at the top. It compliments the gown with the structured style. But a softer hairstyle would have been more flattering on Nicole.

  20. Cat1 says:

    Nicole Kidman seems like a genuinely sweet person and not that sweet people can’t choose plastic surgery or whatever but she just seems like she would be able to be more discerning about it/aging. She has gotten lots of good roles and maybe she feels she wouldn’t otherwise… ? I don’t love the dress but it makes a statement and it’s different and I love the color. Alison’s dress just a colorful lipstick would have made the difference. The one other photo I saw of her she looked very serious so maybe that’s what she was going for. Oh and Nicole Kidman and Sandra Bullock – super adorable !!

  21. Carmen says:

    That cobalt blue absolutely blew me away. Gorgeous color and she is one of the few who can wear it. That big bow, though…

    I loved Sally Hawkins’s dress. Understated and elegant.

  22. Jayna says:

    For those wanting her to go back to red hair, Nicole Kidman has had grey hair for more than a decade. It’s just to tough for her to try to keep up the red. The grey roots would be noticeable within two weeks. It’s why she does the blonde shades.

    Here’s a photo of Nicole from ten years ago, with reddish hair, where you can see all along her hairline how grey her hair really is.

    http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2008/11/19/article-1086923-02852AD0000005DC-484_224x400.jpg

  23. homeslice says:

    Nicole looks like a wax figure. Sally is lovely!

  24. Joannie says:

    Nicole’s hair fades out just like most red heads. Other than her hair I loved the dress.

  25. magnoliarose says:

    The color of Nicole’s dress is gorgeous but her hair is a tragedy. The color and damage make it look like a dry old wig. Sally’s dress is ok.

  26. Tanesha86 says:

    I think Allison’s dress would look even more beautiful in a jewel tone, something to make her whole look just pop. Side note, I’m tired of the whole idea that nude is beige by default, it is not.

  27. Maryrose says:

    You are supposed to wear the dress, the dress is not supposed to wear you. The dress is wearing Nicole. She has lost her touch, or she has stylists who really dislike her.

  28. Guest says:

    I love the color of Nicole K dress and the fit. Did not like the big bow in the front, it just looked weird to me.

  29. Kc says:

    Dear Nicole,
    For the love of god, you are a redhead! Embrace the ginger and stop bleaching your hair to within an inch of its life.
    I remember the good old days with your gorgeous, wild fire -colored curls and a lovely face capable of expression.
    Please come back!
    Kc

    • Sonia says:

      Do people really not understand that red hair rarely lasts as people age? Even if she didn’t damage her hair by having to dye it all sorts of colors over the year, it would still be faded. Blonde is easier to keep up.

  30. Laura Dawe says:

    I love, love, LOVE Sally Hawkins 😍 I thought she was fantastic in “The Shape of Water”, and thoroughly enjoyed her in “Maude”, both “Paddington” movies and in “Happy Go Lucky”. She is such a doll 💕

  31. BobaFelty says:

    Cher called. She wants her 80s dress back from Nicole.

  32. Ozogirl says:

    I hate bows on dresses, so Nicole’s dress is a big NO from me. I like the color though.

  33. Pandy says:

    I thought Nicole’s dress emphasised her lack of flesh. I think she looks like a toothpick in it. Loved the color on her and loved her makeup but the dress was terrible.

  34. Polly says:

    I think she looked amazing. I love the structure and colour of the gown and the way it contrasts with her red lip. This is the only memorable look from the Oscars imo.

  35. Millenial says:

    What I appreciate about Nicole is that she often doesn’t play it “safe” — sometimes that leads to some misses, but she’s almost always wearing something interesting and gets people talking (I’m still in love with that peacock dress from last year’s SAGs). And in a sea of blah ball gowns and blah column dresses, she usually manages to wear something that stands out and is unique. She has fun with it. I’d hate it if she started dressing like everyone else!

  36. sadie77az says:

    Just here to say that, in my opinion Armie’s wife, Elizabeth, is a total delight on Instagram. I can see where she has haters, but I’m not one of them. And she and Armie look regal.

    Also, I am crazy about Sally’s dress.

  37. Deanna says:

    As I recall the young Nichole she had naturally curly hair. And it was red, not a deep dark red but kind of light red. So if that is her real hair she is straightening it AND coloring it. Which is just torture to your hair.

    She needs to stop with the straightening and just color. Because the older you get the more dry the hair will be.

    Coloring one’s own hair at home is one of the easiest money-savers around. I do my own (medium champagne blonde), wait two days after coloring and then do the old fashioned “frosting” – the kind of kit where you pull tufts of hair out through a plastic cap and bleach them. This is really easy and kind of fun. Plus I’ve noticed I get a lot more compliments on my hair when I do it myself. I think it is because of using the cap.

    I gave up on the hairdressers after two different salons said they no longer do “frosting” through a cap, they just do foils. For whatever reason the foils just don’t do it for me.

    Tip”: if your color is looking washed out 2 – 3 weeks after you color it, use a “toner” rinse on it. (By Clairol or Revlon) Or if you have nothing else, mix up 2 tablespoons + 2 tablespoons of your base color and add some shampoo to it. Lather up and leave it on for 5-7 minutes and rinse.

    The Hollywood faces: Yes, Nichole needs to stop. And Jane Fonda needs to not have her hair swept back off her face like she did. She usually gets it so right, but her hair was way off last night.

  38. serena says:

    I hate the flat hair with the middle part look à-la- Gwyneth Paltrow. Just loathe it.