Zendaya entered our lives with Disney almost a decade ago, and despite her age, she is one of the most iconic figures on the red carpet. With the CFDA fashion icon award and her countless appearances at the film premieres this year, there is a critical question that comes to mind: What makes Zendaya’s style so unique?
Although 2021 is not yet behind us, Zendaya is perhaps 2021’s most predominant name. This year, we had the opportunity to get a closer look at her style with the premieres of Malcolm & Marie and Dune, in which she is the leading role. While “Spiderman: No Way Home is about to be released, many of us wonder how will Zendaya look on the red carpet.
The mastermind behind her style is, without a doubt, fashion designer Law Roach. Imagine liking a dish very much. We call for the waiter to thank the chef because the chef is actually the one who brings life to the dish. And for Zendaya’s style, the chef is Law Roach. In addition to Zendaya, Roach works with names like Anya Taylor-Joy, Lewis Hamilton and Kerry Washington. With a team of such powerful names, Roach is one of the game-changing stylists who shape the future of fashion. According to the shopping platform Lyst, Zendaya’s Beyonce-inspired Versace dress at the BET Awards led to a 122 per cent increase in searches for the brand within 48 hours. Likewise, her yellow Valentino Oscar dress increased yellow colour searches by 222 per cent in the 24 hours following the ceremony.
Roach often expresses how happy they are to achieve this and adds: “Zendaya still hasn’t worn most of the big names that are imposed by Hollywood to be the quintessential fashion girl brands. Yes, she wore Valentino, and since then, she has become the face of ad campaigns, but there is still no Chanel, Dior, Saint Laurent. I wanted us to be proof that this notion makes no sense. She became who she is and I became who I am by working with smaller brands.”
On the Dune red carpet with her stylist Roach, she answers the question of “what would it look like if Dune was on the red carpet?” With a concept called “method dressing”, it is possible to see Zendaya at the premieres in three stages related to the film: the Atreides Dynasty, the Fremens and the Arrakis.
Related to the Atreides Dynasty, she wore a Bottega Veneta suit at the Paris premiere, similar to the uniform she wore at the movie. We don’t know if it counts as a spoiler or not, but during the Emperor’s visit to the Atreides in the movie, Timothée Chalamet’s character Paul wore a similar suit.
Also, Rick Owens dress she wore at the London premiere can be associated with the Fremen people. Stepping on the red carpet wearing futuristic Rick Owens, Zendaya and Roach may have been inspired by the light colours used by the Fremen people who live in a desert. And at the Venice Film Festival, the Balmain dress, which can be associated with the warmth of the planet Arrakis and the desert colours, hit the nail on the head, as her other choices.
Although she is a beautiful, talented and stylish woman, there is another reason why she is so supported. Although the year is 2021, we still see a certain fabric of people in the media. Because this fabric is predominantly made out of white and young individuals, many people cannot ﬁnd representations of their culture and identity in TV shows, movies and red carpets. That is why Zendaya is also important to mention in the conversation of diversity. People who support and love her ﬁnd a part of themselves in her, and they feel represented and validated.
So, is Zendaya really a fashion icon? The style of the “teen” star, who entered our lives at the age of 14, has undergone a huge change over time, similar to most famous people. She herself said this at the CFDA Fashion Awards last week. “Fashion did something special for me. It gave me the extraordinary gift of transformation. The ability to become and embody all these diﬀerent characters and be, literally, anyone I wanted to be…” With her activism and, of course, her coolness, she is certainly one of the icons of the 21st century. And that’s why Zendaya deserves to make her own mark.