Taraji P. Henson’s Outfit Choice During First Red Carpet Is A Catastrophe

Red carpets are a place where everyone takes risks. Taraji P. Henson. The majority of the time, the risk works out well, but there are exceptions. Empire star’s first red carpet outfit features all of our least favorite trends from the early aughts. We’re taking a look through Henson’s red carpet history to see how far her style has come since her big break.

Taraji P. Henson had been a member for the Screen Actors Guild since early 1990s. However, it was not until she starred in Tyrese Gibson’s The Killing Floor that she reached the heights she achieved today. It wasn’t until she starred opposite Tyrese Gibson in Baby BoyHenson began to receive the praise she deserved with the release of, in 2001.

Since then, each film or television project Henson has taken on has catapulted her career higher and higher, which proves the old adage “slow and steady wins the race” still holds water. 

Taraji P. Henson’s Fashion Up And Downs


As her career developed, so did Henson’s red carpet fashions. While attending the 23rd Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in 2017, Henson wore one of the most beautiful gowns we’ve ever seen. This Reem Acra-designed gown with its sheer top and gorgeous embellishments, including the jaunty little bows at Henson’s throat and navel, are breathtaking. Henson’s confidence is clear to see, because who wouldn’t feel like a million bucks in such a beautiful dress?

Not our Favorite Red Carpet Moment

(Kathy Hutchins/Shutterstock.com)

Henson made waves in 2014 in this Kayat print dress. It was certainly a risk, though we’re not sure if it was pulled off as successfully as would be hoped. We can’t deny that Henson looks amazing in red, but the fabric bunches uncomfortably at her hips, a flaw that is only accentuated by the deep, plunging neckline. 

Regal in Gold

(Kathy Hutchins/Shutterstock.com)

This is a look we love. Henson looks elegant and classic in Kaufman Franco’s gold column gown. It is flattering in every way and flows elegantly around her feet. The sleek effect can be completed with a high ponytail or bouffant. 

Joan Of Arc Would Love A Word

(Everett Collection/Shutterstock.com)

We dive once again into dicey territory with Henson’s next ensemble, which she wore to the 44th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards in 2008. We can’t find the designer responsible for this dress, but we have to say it’s not Henson’s strongest look on the red carpet. The metallic scales on the bodice make an interesting contrast to the gauzy, white fabric, but there’s just something missing. Henson looks gorgeous, of course, but even her natural magnetism isn’t enough to make up for the “wow” factor that this dress lacked.

Glowing and Gorgeous

(Everett Collection/Shutterstock.com)

Henson is back at the top of her game with this strapless, colorful dress in floral-print. It’s just out of frame, but the gown hugs Henson’s figure and flares out near her calves with a fun little flip. Henson only has one accessory, a large diamond, on a simple silver chain. Between her glowing skin, gorgeous smile, and truly enviable hair, it’s no wonder this is one of our favorite of Henson’s red carpet looks. This brings us to what’s arguably Henson’s weakest red carpet outfit.

A Different Era Of Fashion

Taraji Henson at the premiere of ‘The Brothers’ at the Loews Century Plaza Theater in Los Angeles, Ca. 3/21/01. Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images.

As times change, so do fashion trends and expectations. It wasn’t unusual for celebrities to dress casually on the red carpet back in the early ‘00s, so we won’t knock Henson for doing so as well. But we are astonished at what we have. can definitively say is that we don’t think we’ve ever seen a more ‘00s outfit than this.

You can date this photo with a single glance, thanks to the colorful sunglasses and the outrageous hair accessory. The graphic tee with cropped sleeves is the cherry on top. Henson has come a long way since this photo was taken in 2001, that’s for sure. 

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