Olivia Rodrigo has further cemented her title as the reigning 2000s throwback beauty queen on the 2022 Met Gala red carpet, where she took the concept of Y2K-era butterfly clips to a new extreme. The 19-year-old superstar (and NYLON cover girl) arrived at the annual event at the Metropolitan Museum in New York with waist-length messy curls and huge purple butterflies clipped into the crown of her hair. To match the hair clips, she wore shimmering purple eyeshadow with a lilac mesh metal Versace dress and sheer over-the-elbow gloves.
People on Twitter commented that Rodrigo nailed this year’s Met Gala theme “Gilded Glamour” with her larger-than-life-sized butterfly clips, believing the look was referencing William Shakespeare’s famous quote in King Lear and Megan Fox’s iconic shoulder tattoo, “we will all laugh at gilded butterflies.” Rodrigo’s fans on Twitter have also compared the artist to a woodland fairy, juxtaposing the look with 1917 Cottingley Fairy Photographs. Others argued that she wasn’t on theme and was instead closer to Britney Spears’ iconic Y2K hair looks. No matter what, Olivia’s Met Gala hairdo has us all thinking about butterfly clips in a new way.
Olivia’s butterfly hair clips are also just one of a long line of 2000s trend references from the artist. Her “Brutal” music video, featuring nostalgia-heavy pieces like butterfly clips, pink clip-in highlights, and gothic chokers, inspired 2000s-era enthusiasts everywhere. Rodrigo continued dipping into the well of nostalgic trends for this year’s Brit Awards: At the February 8 ceremony, she wore a very ’90s shade of brown lip liner paired with silver eyeshadow (to match her shimmering Alexandre Vauthier dress) and precise cat-eye eyeliner. The next month, for the 2022 IHeartRadio Awards, the singer opted for school girl snap clips in her nostalgic updo.
Whether Rodrigo perfected gilded glamour or not, her lilac Met Gala beauty look is officially going on our summer moodboard. It also is inspiring fans online to debate whether or not the artist is a real-life fairy — which is understandable considering that she creates red carpet magic.