Entertainment

Photos of RuPaul Through the Years

RuPaul is arguably the most famous drag queen in the world, and as the creator of RuPaul’s Drag Race, has literally paved the way for future drag superstars. But RuPaul Charles isn’t just a fashion queen, he’s written books, songs, hosted talk shows, had acting gigs on multiple TV shows, including his own short-lived Netflix show AJ and the Queen and of course his role as host and producer of Drag Race. Somehow this multi-talented superstar still finds time to look amazing every single time he steps out of the house. No matter if it’s in a tight, super-short slinky dress, a beaded ballgown or a smashing suit, the look is always going to be fabulous. We’ve rounded up some of the glamazon’s most memorable and iconic looks from the past. So sashay your way through this gallery and get ready for some retro fun.

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1979

RuPaul has famously been quoted saying: “We’re all born naked and the rest is drag.” This stripped down look from his youth really was the blank slate for some of the amazing drag looks to come.

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1990

In full party girl mode at NYC’s Roxy nightclub.

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1990

Ru doing a Foxy Brown look. Check out those boots!

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1992

Right before Ru’s hit song “Supermodel (You Better Work)” rocked the charts, she posed right in the middle of NYC’s Times Square.

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1992

Love this little (and we mean little!) black dress.

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1993

RuPaul sported this super patriotic one-piece look at the Gay Rights March in April 1993.

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1993

RuPaul has made a lot of celebrity friends, here is Ru hamming it up with the late, great comedienne Joan Rivers.

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1993

Speaking of celebrities, peep Ru surrounded by Kurt Cobain, Krist Novoselic and Dave Grohl of Nirvana.

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1994

You know you’ve hit iconic status when you are performing with Sir Elton John. Here RuPaul and Elton are rocking the Brit Awards.

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1995

Forget those Victoria Secret Angels, RuPaul owned the winged look at the VH1 Fashion And Music Awards.

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1996

Another gold dress, but if something works, why change it? Plus, this mermaid-seaweed coat is an unforgettable touch.

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1998

RuPaul with Anna Nicole Smith are twinning in anything but basic little black dresses.

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1998

Michelle Visage would have a field day poking fun at this wig if it was on a Drag Race contestant, but to be fair, this look was from one of Ru’s acting gigs during a guest spot on Nash Bridges.

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2000

Love this stripped down look with a rather tame leopard hat for the Sundance Film Festival.

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2000

If you are going to pay tribute to Diana Ross, you better show up looking over-the-top amazing, and RuPaul hit that challenge out of the park. This VH1 Divas 2000 ensemble had gold, glitter, features and a massive lioness wig.

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2004

More gold in this glam cowboy look for Wigstock. That tiny waist is to die for.

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2009

In the last decade or so, RuPaul has most often been spotted on the red carpets (or in this case blue) wearing some perfectly tailored suits, and this pattern mix is spot on.

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2017

At the Fashion Does Drag Ball, Ru went for a more streetwear male drag, which, of course, he nailed.

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2018

And while his public looks now are mostly suits, you can still see Ru in drop dead drag and wigs weekly (like this black and white number) on the runway of RuPaul’s Drag Race.

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2018

Ru is no shrinking wall flower in this foliage-like suit at the Variety And Women In Film’s 2018 Pre-Emmy Celebration.

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2019

Ru looked phenomenal in this hot pink, zebra-striped suit, with some feathers and sparkle for the last Met Gala pre-pandemic shutdown.

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