Ice Spice blew a metaphorical kiss to Britney Spears, Madonna, and Christina Aguilera at the 2023 MTV VMAs on Sept. 12. In honor of the trio’s iconic performance at the VMAs exactly two decades ago, the rapper walked the red carpet in a sheer bridal dress with lacy tights and a voluminous tutu. Spice’s style team completed the elegant ensemble with silver jewelry and strappy heels with rhinestone embellishments.
Spice’s dress featured a satin corset bodice with lacy sleeves that transformed into fingerless gloves at the ends of her wrists. At the waist, the dress puffed out in either direction, boasting multiple layers of floral lace. The delicate, sheer fabric appeared again along the neckline and on both sides of the bodice, marking two large cutouts along her back. Spice kept the ornate design going with a pair of see-through tights and bedazzled sandals. Around her neck, the rapper also wore a rhinestone collar and layered chain necklaces in silver, the perfect complement to her Moon Person for best new artist.
The frilly design is a clear homage to Spears and Aguilera’s outfits at the 2003 VMAs, which in themselves were nods to Madonna’s 1984 MTV VMAs performance when she sang “Like a Virgin.” The 2003 performance began with the megastars strutting onstage to the tune of “Like a Virgin” in full wedding dresses, complete with tulle veils and flower bouquets. As the track transitioned to Madonna’s “Hollywood,” the singer emerged in a groom-inspired tuxedo look complete with a top hat. The performance — including the trio’s outfits — has since been memorialized as one of the most iconic moments in award show history.
Though Spice’s outfit looked incredible regardless of its significance, the clear homage to such a historic award show makes her ensemble that much more special. Later in the evening, she changed into a sheer maxi dress with a plunging, lace-up design that stretched down either side of her silhouette. Along the back, the ruching of the transparent fabric split at the knees, creating a subtle slit that gave a glimpse at her white pointed-toe stilettos.
Ahead, admire Spice’s sartorial tribute to Spears, Aguilera, and Madonna, and take a closer look at its original inspiration.