Salma Hayek has her pick of luxury brands in the Kering stable, but for the GQ Awards, the actor looked to an independent label to make a splash. The certified queen of va va voom style, who once shared how difficult red-carpet dressing was as an outsider, but now clearly relishes her industry contacts, commissioned Vivienne Westwood to make a draped corset dress in a deep scarlet hue that spelled out vixen.
Although the audacious neckline and cinched silhouette is Hayek through and through (this is a woman who lived in Versace and Hervé Leger in the late ’90s), the FSC-certified satin crepe signaled she has her eye on the future of fashion—vital when your husband, François-Henri Pinault, is tasked with leading the charge when it comes to brand accountability. The custom piece, from Westwood’s popular made-to-order line, proposed a strong case for investing in something singular to keep forever. This nipped confection was, quite literally, made for Hayek, toeing the line between deliciously naughty and resolutely classic.
As party season approaches, Hayek—who is always gung-ho about trying the latest conceptual Balenciaga and Gucci pieces Pinault brings home from work—extolled the virtues of sticking to a formula you know works. Cast your mind back to the early days when the rising Mexican actor was dressing herself, and she leaned on the same silhouettes to make an impact. Now 56, nothing has changed—particularly when it comes to her trademark accessory: that cheeky smile that signifies she’s in on the fact she looks traffic-stoppingly gorgeous. There’s sex appeal (see: the naked dresses persistently doing the fashion rounds) and then there’s real bombshell sex appeal aced by the individuals who feel 100 per cent comfortable in their own skin (Salma is, after all, everyone’s favourite swimwear influencer). In her festive, bow-bedecked bustier, Hayek presented the gift of feel-good fashion.
This article first appeared on British Vogue.