Anyone who knows me understands that I am a die-hard feminist (you can always find me bumpin’ Beyoncé’s "Formation"). But don’t let that fool you—I am so here for men too, especially those with indisputable style. My support of equal rights does not preclude my ability to recognize the fire fits I've spotted on Hollywood’s leading men this past year. In many ways, we can consider these men the unsung style heroes of 2019 because of their embrace of camp, which was also notably the theme of this year’s Met Gala.
Camp's origins can be traced back to 17th-century France; Molière even created a term about it, "se camper," which means "to pose in an exaggerated fashion." From striking a pose to its current usage as a descriptor for some queer men's style, camp fashion, aka dramatic style, isn't just for the few. It's for everyone who doesn’t care about holding up patriarchal beauty standards.This year more than proved that.
Seeing men publicly embrace the spectrum of style, from feminine-inspired red carpet looks to power suiting to grunge galore is a reminder to us all that true style has no gender. Because why hold on to the antiquated notion that men shouldn't wear pearls or paint their nails or care about their clothes at all? There’s something that empowers people of all gender identities when you can break the boundaries of style and look damn good doing it. Ahead, enjoy scrolling through 19 of the best dressed men of the year whose style had my edges snatched throughout 2019.
#19. Keanu Reeves
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Let’s be honest: This year was rough, but it did bless us with the resurgence of heartthrob Keanu Reeves and his minimalist style that verges on maximalist for the sheer fact that he looks so good in all-black ensembles. His campaign with Saint Laurent earlier in the year was a reminder that like a fine wine, this man and his style only get better with age.
#18. Cole Sprouse
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If I didn’t include Cole Sprouse in this list, I would have suffered consequences from fellow editors (*cough, Lauren Eggerston, cough*). Despite potential repercussions, this particular Sprouse twin has come into his own this year, which makes him oh so worthy of being included on this list. Yes, I love Sprouse in a good beanie and shearling jacket (his signature Riverdale look), but let’s be real here: He shines in a non-traditional suit, and this Paris Fashion Week look is no exception.
#17. Hasan Minhaj
Comedian Hasan Minhaj’s style is a bit more traditional, but honestly it’s refreshing to see a man who values his suits as much as his sneakers—and trust that Minhaj knows the style cred of both. While this year’s wardrobe included quite a few non-traditional suit looks that weren’t a laughing matter, I particularly loved this forest green tuxedo he choose to wear to the CFDA Fashion Awards—it’s like the beginner's suit for embracing camp for men: no sequins were hurt in the process, but it’s still extra.
#16. Henry Golding
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Henry Golding captured a special place in my heart (and the hearts of many) when I first spotted him onscreen back in 2018 as the protagonist in Crazy Rich Asians. And while the actor continues to be America’s on-screen rom-com crush,his style continues to fuel my minor obsession. I have yet to see a suit that does not look good on this man—please show me a bad picture of him, I beg of you. Side note: More men should volunteer to wear velvet in 2020.
#15. Michael B. Jordan
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Turner.
Life, or any listicle for that matter, is not complete without Michael B. Jordan. Sure, he’s incredibly handsome, talented, and has collaborated with Coach for a unisex line, but don’t let that detract from the most important fact of all: His suit game leaves me in shambles. Specifically, this look for the 25th Annual Screen Actors Guild Award; the suit, paired with a Louis Vuitton harness, was quite the controversy. But, in an unpopular opinion, I am here for men gracing the red carpet with a harness look, especially if that man happens to be Jordan, Chalamet, or Maluma.
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You’re not going to change my mind about this: as previously stated, I am here for men in harnesses. I am also very much a fan of Colombian singer Maluma. If you don’t know him, then he’s a man whose style and music should 100% be on your radar. I confess, I didn’t know much about Maluma until I stumbled upon his most recent feature with GQ, but once I fell down the hole, I fell hard, and you will too. His style is always exploratory, he had some bops, and he’s easy on the eyes—aka, he's the perfect contender for being one of the best dressed men of 2019, and for stealing your heart.
#13. Charles Melton
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I don’t know what’s in the water on the Riverdale set, but the men on that show know how to dress—case in point: Charles Melton. The Korean-American actor has a knack for putting together the type of looks you wish you or your S.O. thought of first—like the Paris Fashion Week look above. But beyond his off-duty style, he’s not the type of man to shy away from wearing a glitter suit to the Met Gala, which is what we need more of in the world.
#12. Donald Glover
One could say that Donald Glover is the archetype of the unconventional creative. From his award-winning show, Atlanta, co-starring the brilliant Zazie Beetz, to his most recent movie with Rihanna, Guava Island, this man’s artistry is always moving the culture forward. So of course you can expect nothing less from his style. Case in point, the pussy-bow blouse paired with a floral jacket and heeled loafers he wore to the LACMA Gala this year killed me.
#11. Machine Gun Kelly
Roger Kisby/Getty Images for Palms Casino Resort.
While grunge is a trend for some this fall, that’s rapper Machine Gun Kelly’s whole damn aesthetic. He's known for his angsty, genre-mixing music, and in many ways, his art speaks to his style too. His ensembles are this tantalizing, hard-to-define mix of rock 'n' roll bad boy meets non-binary—just look to the zebra coat he wore for a performance this year. Um, why aren’t men wearing more statement coats and leather pants? And can I pull off this look?
#10. Tyler, the Creator
Music is not the only thing Tyler, the Creator is innovating. What is particularly remarkable about this artist is that he’s never been afraid to push the boundaries with his style—it’s like a Supremestan meets grandpa in the best possible way. How many other male artists do you currently seeing rocking blonde wigs on tour with ease? Tyler’s style is a rebuke of cool, the cliché, and most of all, it’s a call to action for men and women to redefine what’s socially acceptable when it comes to style.
#9. Jaden Smith
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This may be an unpopular pick, but I know in my soul that Jaden Smith is going to be the poster child for the evolution of men’s fashion. A suit will never go out of style, but what makes Jaden—and the evolution of menswear—so exciting is that exploration of the spectrum of style. I hope more men feel free to explore in this way. Dye your hair pink, pair your black suit with a colorful scarf, add a lil’ Dr. Marten to your tuxedo—the world is your fashionable oyster, especially if you’re Jaden Smith.
#8. Timothée Chalamet
Speaking of poster children, aside from the Louis Vuitton glitter harness look Timothée Chalamet blessed us with at the Golden Globes, Chalamet didn’t stop serving us looks this year. Picking a favorite was like pulling teeth because the actor’s style is the remedy for my sweet tooth. That said, jaws dropped everywhere when he showed up in a fitted light gray belted Haider Ackermann suit and cowboy boots at the Venice Film Festivalthis year.
#7. Bad Bunny
Anyone sleeping on the Puerto Rican musician Bad Bunny is committing a crime. Not only has his music been dominating the Billboards, but his style on the gram is fuego, fuego, fuego. Bad Bunny never ceases to push the boundaries of non-conformity; from street-wear–inspired looks to grunge, what can’t this man pull off? And I’m sorry, but do you see how his nails are coordinated with his hair color for the Billboard Latin American Awards red carpet? Shooketh.
#6. Harry Styles
Karwai Tang/Getty Images.
While some of the haters of the world questioned Harry Styles’s camp-inspired Met Gala look, I was so here for it. Yes, honey—not only can he rock a Gucci suitor some wide-leg trousers, but he has also truly reminded us that the best looks often eschew society's gender norms. More men wearing pearls in 2020, please.
#5. Lil Nas X
Billboard records weren’t the only thing Lil Nas X was breaking this year—in fact, his style was equally as genre-bending. From his digital cover ofTeen Vogue to his Killa-inspired Halloween costume, Lil Nas X has been having a banner year. But the moment that really solidified him as one of the best dressed men of the year was when he showed up to the MTV Video Music Awards in a full-on, Prince-inspired glitter look. Can’t nobody tell me that Nas wasn’t a style icon in 2019.
#4. Ezra Miller
There would not be a complete list of men pushing the boundaries of style without Ezra Miller. The internet lost it when he rolled up in his head-turning Met Gala look, and since then, he has proven that makeup, florals, and all things “feminine” ain’t just for the girls. I mean, just look at this cat eye he wore to the launch of Urban Decay’s stayNAKED launch—his makeup skills are better than mine will ever be, and I’m not mad about it.
#3. A$AP Rocky
Stephane Cardinale - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
Not playing favorites here, but A$AP Rocky is one of the most stylish men of all time. I often think about when Rocky sported a Gucci scarf around his head like a grandma to LACMA’s Film Gala, not just because it was a look, but because from day one he has been on the camp bandwagon. In many ways, Rocky’s style re-established the correlation between masculinity and experimental fashion for not only black men but all men. Because true masculinity is being comfortable enough to wear a Dior tank top, or dress like a babushka and know that it has nothing to do with your sexuality.
#2. Jared Leto
Kevin Mazur/MG19/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue
Jared Leto has always been a non-binary style icon: Case in point, some of his iconic looks this year included him wearing a pink fur to Gucci’s show or his LACMA Gala look. But the look that really turned heads, and encapsulates the fact that 2019 was the year of men pushing style’s boundaries, was his jewel-encrusted Met Gala look. If this outfit isn’t mind-blowing, then I don’t know how you’ve managed to scroll this far.
#1. Billy Porter
And finally, the moment you’ve been waiting for: Number one on our list of the most stylish men of 2019 is the one and only Billy Porter! No red carpet, or expectations of what men can and can not wear, will ever be the same thanks to this Broadway icon. The activist and actor shut it down this year; not only did he stun us at the Met Galaand pull off wearing a dress to the Oscars, but he became the first openly gay black man to win an outstanding lead actor in a drama series Emmy for Pose. Basically, 2019 was Billy Porter’s year, and we were all just living in it. Frankly, that’s not a bad thing in my book.