PEOPLE's Best Dressed Stars of 2018
From their dazzling red carpet appearances to their perpetually on-point street style, PEOPLE's Best Dressed list recognizes the stars whose style we couldn't stop talking about. Whether's it's Meghan Markle's regally relatable wardrobe, Lupita Nyong'o's strikingly standout red carpet attire or Jennifer Lopez's showstoppingly sexy statement pieces, each woman on the list has earned our respect for having fun with fashion - and inspiring us in the process. See our full list here and be sure to visit our curated online boutique with Orchard Mile inspired by these fashion tastemakers.
When curating PEOPLE's 2018 Best Dressed List, it was impossible to ignore Meghan Markle's influence on the fashion industry. In less than a year, the Suits star turned British royal has not only commanded the attention of every major designer, but she's also managed to captivate royal watchers who are quick to pull out their credit cards to purchase any small piece of her fairytale closet. Whether or not you're dazzled by the Markle Sparkle, there's no denying that everything the Duchess of Sussex touches turns to sold.
She's also modernizing the royal dress code, incorporating shorter hemlines (hello Tuxedo minidress!), shoulder-baring styles and and form-fitting silhouettes into her wardrobe. And then there's her signature messy bun -- which she wore down the aisle at her wedding.
With her bold color choices and her red carpet twirls, it's safe to say that if fashion had a superhero it would be this 35-year-old actress. "I just love color, I've never been afraid of it," Nyong'o says of her style, seen here in a regal purple Atelier Versace gown at the Black Panther world premiere in Los Angeles. Her stylist Micaela Erlanger always knows excatly what to look for when pulling clothes for the star: vibrant gowns with "empowering silhouettes." "People respond to what she wears because she owns her look," says Erlanger.
The human rights lawyer, 40, is unapologetic about her bold and glamorous style, whether she's on the carpet or in the courtroom. "Her decision to wear trousers to the Met Gala was her way of depicting female empowerment," says designer Richard Quinn, who made her custom two-piece ensemble worn to this year's fashion prom, where she served as co-chair.
The Oscar winner, 49, always makes the red carpet her personal runway and fearlessly pulls off daring high fashion-designs. "She's the epitome of the woman I aspire to design for," says Mary Katrantzou, who created the floral motif bubble-skirt dress the star wore at the Cold War screening in Cannes this May.
There's a reason the 49-year-old superstar graces best dressed lists year after year: She manages to out JLo-herself in one sexy style after another. "She works really hard on her body, and it's fun for us to show it off," say her stylists Rob Zangardi and Mariel Haenn, who helped style her in this thigh-baring Balmain gown at this year's Met Gala.
TRACEE ELLIS ROSS
There is no one more game to take a fashion risk or change up her style than the 45-year-old Black-ish star. Her favorite look this year? The Marc Jacobs dress and matching turban she wore to the Golden Globes, because "it felt like an expression of my history and my power."
KIM KARDASHIAN WEST
When it comes to setting fashion trends, no one is more influential than the 37-year-old reality star turned mogul. She was even honored for that very reason at this year's CFDA Awards, where she rocked a crop top (with an open back!) and matching spandex maxi skirt custom designed by Rick Owens. But her favorite moment so far this year was the custom liquid gold Versace gown she wore to the Met Gala, which looked like a relic from the Italian label's '90s runways. "I really loved my Met Ball Look," she tells PEOPLE in our latest issue. "It was so fun to wear gold and be all bronzed."
For the Ocean's 8 world premiere, the actress, 54, went all-out fashun in a romantic, feather-collared Elie Saab Haute Couture dress. And that was just one of many red carpets where the star brought her fashion A-game this year.
At 60, the Black Panther star is redefining the rules of red carpet fashion -- one sexy jumpsuit at the time. "I don't dress her based on her age, I dress her based on her personality," says Jennifer Austin, the actress' stylist of five years who dresses the star in looks like this yellow fringe Naeem Khan onesie, as well as sequin midriff-baring ensembles.
"There's a casual, beach-y ease to Margot," her stylist Kate Young tells PEOPLE, adding "I never want her to look done up." So even when the A-lister, 28, is dressed up in a couture design (like this feathered Miu Miu design at the 2018 SAG Awards) she still manages to look effortlessly cool.