Taylor Swift’s ‘Midnights’ Has Us Wondering: What Makes the Perfect Revenge Dress?


Taylor Swift has us thinking about revenge—more specifically, what we’d wear to commit it. The singer released her highly anticipated album Midnights last night at (of course) midnight. On the track “Vigilante Shit,” Swift returns to her Reputation-era themes of vengeance, with the refrain “lately I’ve been dressing for revenge.” Ah, the fantasy of looking absolutely perfect in front of someone who has wronged you. What could be more aspirational?

The ultimate revenge dress is, of course, the off-the-shoulder black Christina Stambolian dress that Princess Diana wore while her former husband then-Prince Charles was admitting to an affair with current Queen Consort Camilla. Upstaging your ex on a national stage just by wearing a perfectly fitting LBD is a universal dream, even if the high stakes of Diana’s specific circumstances are a little less relatable.

Diana, Princess of Wales attends the Vanity Fair party at the Serpentine Gallery on November 20, 1994Anwar Hussein

Other entrants into the canon of revenge dresses include the black lace catsuit Bella Hadid was sewed into for the 2017 Met Gala. Semi-sheer and with a deep U-neck in the back, the look was a powerful statement on its own—but the deliciousness came from the fact that her ex, The Weeknd, was walking the carpet with his new flame, Selena Gomez, at the same time. (Who knows if this factored into Hadid’s decision to wear such a sexy catsuit, but it made for some thrilling celebrity theater and Twitter speculation.)