Top 20 Greatest RuPaul's Drag Race Runway Outfits



Top 20 Greatest RuPaul's Drag Race Runway Outfits

VOICE OVER: Phoebe de Jeu WRITTEN BY: Owen Maxwell
These "RuPaul's Drag Race" runway outfits are all winners in our book. Our countdown includes Kameron Michaels' Feathers, Gigi Goode's Black Wedding, Raja's Bowler Hat Look, and more!

Top 20 RuPaul's Drag Race Runway Outfits

Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 20 RuPaul’s Drag Race Runway Outfits.

For this list, we’ll be looking at the best outfits and concepts from the Drag Race stage up to and including 2020, whether it’s a Maxi challenge or otherwise. We’re basing this on a mix of glamor and clever designs as a whole. We’re also covering handfuls of seasons, finales and All Star runs, so a SPOILER ALERT is now in order.

Which runway look is your favorite? Let us know in the comments.

#20: Crystal Methyd’s Blue Meanie Genie
Season 12

For an eleganza challenge late in her season, Crystal pulled out a wildly eccentric look. Rather than traditional glam, this all blue outfit sported plenty of “Yellow Submarine” blue meanie realness. The puffy pants gave a unique, oversized feel, while also leaving an Aladdin-Genie smoke trail illusion. Methyd’s choice for a deflated arm also provided a fun bit of asymmetry to the outfit. The suit traded out a form-fitting design to highlight a more conceptual piece. Methyd’s look easily won over judges and fans alike by embracing bizarre aesthetics and color.

#19: April Carrión’s April Showers
Season 6

April Carrion didn’t make it far in “Drag Race,” so you may have forgotten just how dazzling her fashion was. Carrion’s raincoat-inspired gown blended bright yellows and blues for a sharp neon that popped. Along with her floor-length skirt, the seductive top showed more skin than fabric. Carrion’s umbrella tied the whole look together, especially with the dangling rain details to reinforce the theme. Her strip down in the lip synch that week also displayed how the outfit could adapt to her wardrobe. Given how well this frock worked as a chic piece and a play on real raincoats, Carrion was sickening in the rain.

#18: Kameron Michaels’ Feathers
Season 10

With feathers as the runway choice of the week, we saw birds and kooky dresses, while Kameron Michaels aimed to be their queen. Her black costume kept it risqué with a nude bodysuit, which offered lots of body-oddy-oddy. Michaels was decked in decadent wings that actually appeared to flap as she moved them. She brought a sense of regal beauty with her crown and jewels, along with the gold detailing on her shoulder pads. Plus her horns and angular makeup gave the design a sinister quality. Michaels’ beastly and commanding chic was worthy of Maleficent herself.

#17: Katya’s Pants on the Runway
All Stars Season 2

Katya upped her competitive edge in her All Stars appearance, which included atypical fashion choices even for a pants challenge. Her pants and sweater combo had a strong, motherly look, with a dash of, as Katya put it: [“1980s, lesbian literary agent”]. The reddish-brown coloring and tracksuit appearance also played up her Russian imagery with both style and humor. The sleek stripes matched to the blonde hair exuded a strong sense of power as well, much like the Ellen Barkin styles she cited. Katya’s choice to hit the runway in sweats was bold enough in and of itself. Next to many other looks that week that simply included pants, Katya showed off a total outfit built around her bottoms.

#16: Yvie Oddly's Mirrored Headpiece
Season 11

For her last shot at the crown, Yvie oddly hit the stage in a gown and headpiece fit for a queen. The brown and gold were a strong combination, and cemented the outfit’s royal qualities. The floral appearance of her crown included brilliant mirrors to create a stunning multi-headed illusion. With Oddly’s dancing, the look already gave off a deity-like quality, so the infinite line of faces enhanced it all the more. Yvie topped this with a bedazzled fake face behind her, delivered as a satisfying reveal in the climax of her Lady Gaga lip sync. Sasha Velour’s destructible helmet in the Season 9 finale was exciting to see, though Oddly’s provided more versatile details. This avant-garde choice pushed Oddly’s drag beyond the edge of glory to victory.

#15: Naomi Smalls’ Wizard of Oz
Season 8

Naomi Smalls was handed the difficult challenge of spicing up a scarecrow for a “Wizard of Oz” runway. Smalls used her earth tones as a base to let every splash of color feel exceptionally pronounced. She played on the tattered appearance of a scarecrow to show off more skin in her midriff. The patchwork of her skirt turned rags into a surprisingly preppy piece that still fit her character’s theme. Smalls’ straps served double duty as fun accessories, while appearing to hold the bottoms onto her. All the little straw bracelets showed a level of inventiveness as well. With overflowing straw on both her and partner Jasmine Arteaga Sorge, Naomi found endless ways to explore scarecrow fashion.

#14: Valentina's Madonna
Season 9

In a night of Madonna-inspired looks filled with endless fabric, Valentina stood out by going nude instead. Covered simply in mock-censor bars, Valentina showed off her body with no reservations in honor of a Madonna photo series. Valentina highlighted just how stunning her body could be without clothing, and cheekily left her butt uncovered. With everything on display, Valentina’s confidence ultimately sold us on her choice. Plus her casual twirling of a cigarette emphasized her laissez-faire energy. While she actually won for her excessive fabric in a bridal gown, this all-skin runway impressed us more. And really, only Valentina could’ve pulled off a naked look with this kind effortless appeal.

#13: Brooke Lynn Hytes’ 2-in-1 Look
Season 11

Brooke Lynn had plenty of strong outfits in Season 11, and her best offered us double trouble. She started with a stunning 1970s disco look, complete with a booming Afro and sequins for that week’s theme. Hytes suavely whipped off her hair and gown into a very suggestive pink and black set of lingerie. Her luscious blonde hair popped out with a smooth grace to accent the moment. The swap played out like seamless magic, with both styles feeling distinct yet united by their colors. While Hytes’ reinvention of latex pieces from Detox was an impressive sign of things to come, this was the full culmination of her talents. Hytes nailed her presentation best of all, if the judges’ reactions were any indication.

#12: Jinkx Monsoon’s Day of the Dead
Season 5

To follow up a telenovela challenge, Jinkx Monsoon took a Latin theme in a more festive direction. As a play on Mexico’s Day of the Dead, Monsoon topped her outfit with macabre skeleton makeup. She also incorporated a Spanish dancer look with a bouncy black and red skirt, and a flowing top. Monsoon’s striped tights upped the Tim Burton-esque aesthetics and tied into the color-scheme. The concept landed on the line between a night out and a funeral, and stood out more because of it. Monsoon used a holiday to tackle the theme in a totally unique way to show early that she was a winner.

#11: Sharon Needles’ Zombie Glam
Season 4

In her first runway ever, Sharon Needles established her scary movie drag with glorious excess. Rather than simply tattering her clothes for the apocalypse, Needles went for a damaged zombie design. The intentionally ugly painting on her face embraced more eccentric drag, and resembled morbid movie makeup.The torn dress and recycled shoulder pads all used strategically damaged tweaks to up her seductive charm. Needles’ blood spitting was a wondrously dark addition, which proved she could make the darkest subject matter look good. Her radiated take on a very disco-inspired look was an enchanting way to start her drag race career.

#10: Gigi Goode's Black Wedding
Season 12

After so many great looks courtesy of Gigi Goode’s designer mom, she made a huge splash with a simple Christian Dior-inspired black dress. The frock was understated, with a very narrow top that gloriously bloomed out in its bottom half for a mix of business and party glam. Goode’s figure was complemented and then some by the brilliant silhouette here that instantly sold us on the outfit. Her blonde wig provided a wonderful contrast to the dark tones, and allowed her to look like a movie star next to the other queens. Plus the red soles on Goode’s shoes gave another splash of color that her competitors lacked.

#9: Shea Couleé’s Love the Skin You're In
All Stars Season 5

Shea Couleé got bold and weird on the runway during her All Stars run, which meant she took a skin challenge in the most direct way possible. Her voluptuous figure was out for all to see in this challenge, and she let it show in her sassy strut down the stage. While she feigned being fully naked, Couleé emanated elegance with the jewel detailing on this bodysuit. All the golden accessories provided an extra feeling of decadence, as she stood like a ruler above the judges. As the one literal interpretation of the theme, Couleé won by displaying self-love and a blend of homages.

#8: Kim Chi’s Black Horns Eleganza
Season 8

Kim Chi had some of the quirkiest designs of season eight, which often pulled from her love of pop culture. For her best drag, Kim Chi tied her nerdier inspirations into a truly stylish black dress to elevate it into something surreal. The popping feathers in the corset brought an animalistic aesthetic and some extra flair given how far her pheasant feathers stuck out. Chi’s mask mixed art-pop with Disney villain realness, while her horns added to the beastly appearance. Her finale look was a very beautiful take on a fairy godmother, but she was much more ambitious here. Kim Chi exemplified growth through this outfit, and showcased all the traits she was already celebrated for at the same time.

#7: Raja’s Bowler Hat Look
Season 3

For her final chance to win the season, Raja ditched her over-the-top concepts for a body-focused look. She started saucy with a wrap that suggested she was might only be wearing her bowler hat underneath. Her reveal showed off more skin in an outfit equal parts flapper and burlesque dancer. The dangling frill also gave the simplistic pieces more movement, which really came alive in her final lip sync. It was in that lip sync that her clothes gave her the freedom to show every inch of her personality, unrestricted by a dress. Despite the high-concept glamor going on in her Rococo runway, Raja looked more herself in this final garb. Her swagger was on display, which was exactly what she needed to win the season.

#6: Courtney Act’s Wings
Season 6

The category was...animals, and Courtney Act found a way to focus on that and her body all at once. Her base outfit was very much a Lady Gaga meets Victoria’s Secret catwalk, and then came her big moment. The massive wings swung out majestically, and enhanced the strength she had already exuded in her pose. Act’s wings looked and moved with beauty, and allowed her getup to be angelic and bird-like all-in-one. Though her Klaus Nomi homage on the black-and-white runway was surprisingly arthouse, her wings just gave her the wow factor. With that jaw-dropping reveal, Act secured her most iconic moment in Drag Race herstory.

#5: Detox’s Latex Eleganza
All Stars Season 2

A latex theme for Detox sounded like a recipe for just showing off her body, but that wasn’t all she had up her sleeve. Her monochrome greyscale finale look already hinted at her artsy side, and here she’d finally mastered it. The red and black were a sharp color blend, which immediately drew our eyes to Detox. Her figure was fully highlighted as well in a beautiful feminine illusion, whether it was the open chest or her intense thigh gap. She had mixed “Fifth Element” with a sexy robot, and left us gobsmacked by a butt reveal,) but those looks were more fun than fashion. This was all of Detox’s strengths in one triumphant piece.

#4: Jujubee’s Golden Goddess
All Stars Season 5

Jujubee had always had the personality for Drag Race, and her All Stars run showed she’d finally nailed the style. Her final runway interpreted her Buddhist upbringing to frame Juju as a stunning goddess come alive. The whole bodysuit shimmered like a diamond, and the crown emphasized both the regal and spiritual tones of the look. Even the sash played on religious imagery, as it gave a supernatural flow to her costume. Jujubee didn’t let that stop her curves from shining through as well. Through modernizing her own roots, Jujubee found her most refined look in her entire history on the show.

#3: Manila Luzon’s Pineapple
Season 3

In the case of a humorous and quirky queen like Manila Luzon, a pineapple actually served as a distinguishing choice for a gown. The dress was immediately gripping thanks to its punchy yellow and green combo. The pineapple lines and leaf frill for the skirt were both funny and chic, as they were done with the right care to work as a normal outfit. The leaf hairpiece with slice earrings also provided clever accessories, and the pineapple clutch was too flashy to ignore. While her S&M-inspired boots look had a risqué edge, and her silver “eleguence” piece was utterly refined, this reminded us that Luzon’s quirks could visually come alive. Whatever outfit Manila Luzon has worn, her pineapple has always been the most memorable.

#2: Aquaria’s Very Best Drag
Season 10

Aquaria slayed the runway every week, and her green “Very Best Drag” look was a display of fearlessness. Yes, her bare top was a progressive gender-neutral choice, left all the more intriguing thanks to her sleek undergarments. But she even managed to outdo the avant-garde insanity of her inner saboteur look with a pair of nose rings and a matching waist set. The green pairing of a boa and shoes were just as startling, and they were punctuated by her hair points as well. While she brought more political punch in her oily mermaid look, (xref) Aquaria’s floofy skirt here had a similar tail-like charm. Aquaria was the peak of weird high-fashion, for a “very best drag” garb that lived up to its name.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Shuga Cain’s Deep Purple
Season 11

Peppermint’s Club Kid Couture
Season 9

Monét X Change’s Angelic White
All Stars Season 4

Nina West’s Face-Kini Realness
Season 11

Milk’s Pinocchio Look
Season 6

#1: Violet Chachki’s Passing the Crown Look
“Grand Finale”

In her return to help crown the next Drag Race queen in Season 8, Violet Chachki tied many looks into one to show she was a true champion. She merged her jaw-dropping tartan reveal with her unusual Hello Kitty headpiece, for a cloth covering that collapsed perfectly into her frock. The oversized skirt played on the looks of real royals, and had so many finishing touches we had to pause to catch it all. Violet’s accessories recalled the jewel-heavy outfit she won in, and showed she’d matured since then. Her cinch was also tight enough to give her “Death Becomes Her” waist a run for its money. As a summation of drag, the word queen and her whole career, Violet delivered a look to top them all.