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The star also reflects on her style evolution and living in pajamas amid the pandemic

By Hanna Flanagan and Julie Jordan
April 01, 2021 12:08 PM
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Jessica Alba has worn so many amazing designer creations to so many red carpet events, award shows and press apperanes over the years, but there's one outfit that still holds a special place in her heart — and her closet.

"This was made for me by Prada for the premiere of Valentine's Day in London," Alba tells PEOPLE about her gingham V-neck A-line dress that she rewears in a special photo shoot in PEOPLE's annual Beautiful Issue on newsstands everywhere Friday, April 2. "I just felt like this was just fun and it was like different and it just felt like a good time and it still feels like a good time, you know?"

jessica alba
Credit: Jon Davis

Even though it shows a bit more skin than she's used to with its plunging neckline, she still loves the way it makes her feel.

"It's kind of tight in all the right places. So, it allows me to feel okay and feel comfortable," the Honest Co. founder shares. Another bonus? "And because it has kind of a bigger skirt, it's not like I have to suck in my stomach, which is always a good time in a party dress."

Jessica alba
Credit: Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty

Back at the 2010 UK premiere of the Gary Marshall rom-com, Alba paired the dress with black tights and blue peep-toe lace-up booties. Today though, she'd style it a bit more casually. "I would probably wear it with white sneakers [and] a motorcycle jacket, or like, Doc Martens and ... a denim jacket."

Reflecting on her style evolution, the L.A.'s Finest actress says she's transitioned from mostly thrifted '90s staples including low-rise jeans, tank tops and studded belts, to menswear-inspired pieces like trousers, button-ups and sneakers.

"Oftentimes, I would say my husband [Cash Warren] and I, although our clothes are different sizes, we probably wear a lot of the same things," she said. "I do like that vibe...But then I'll throw on a party dress as well."

"I would say my style is more fun now than it was when I was younger. I probably used to stick to kind of one aesthetic," Alba explains. "Now I don't care. I can just change it up and I have no attachment to one vibe or another. Sometimes it's much more preppy. Sometimes it's much more boho, vintage, whatever."

Throughout the past year though, the star definitely had one go-to aesthetic — comfy casual. Alba jokes she's been living in "anything that could probably be mistaken for pajamas" throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I actually set up like a little desk area in my closet. I just don't really have to get out of sweats most of the time, or lounge pants," Alba says, adding that recently she's enjoyed getting dressed up in "real clothes" and going "back out into the world."

Pick up this week's The Beautiful Issue on newsstands Friday and check out all of our coverage on PEOPLE.com.