Lady Gaga Shared The Empowering Reason She Wore A Suit To This Event

"Today I wear the pants."

It's not unusual for Lady Gaga to make a fashion statement on the red carpet, but the outfit she chose to wear to Monday's Elle Women in Hollywood event had something particularly powerful to say. Instead of a gown, Gaga opted to wear a baggy Marc Jacobs suit.

Although BuzzFeed reports that some on Twitter have made jokes about the oversized jacket and trousers, Gaga shared the empowering reason she chose the look during an emotional speech at the event, explaining that she had originally tried on several dresses.


"To be honest, I felt sick to my stomach," she said, according to PopCrush. "And I asked myself: What does it really mean to be a woman in Hollywood? We are not just objects to entertain the world. We are not simply images to bring smiles or grimaces to people's faces. We are not members of a giant beauty pageant meant to be pit against one another for the pleasure of the public. We women in Hollywood, we are voices. We have deep thoughts and ideas and beliefs and values about the world and we have the power to speak and be heard and fight back when we are silenced."

Although she says her choice to try on the suit was met with some confusion by those around her, she added that she began to cry while wearing it. "In this suit, I felt like me today. In this suit, I felt the truth of who I am well up in my gut," she said. "And then wondering what I wanted to say tonight become very clear to me."

"As a sexual assault survivor by someone in the entertainment industry, as a woman who is still not brave enough to say his name," she continued, "as a woman who lives with chronic pain, as a woman who was conditioned at a very young age to listen to what men told me to do, I decided today I wanted to take the power back. Today I wear the pants."

At a time when the #MeToo and Time's Up movements remain as relevant as ever, Gaga's message adds to an important conversation. She used the rest of her speech to discuss the shame she has felt over her assault at age 19, and the PTSD she has since experienced. She also called for mental health to "become a global priority."

Gaga's decision to undermine gender expectations through her fashion brings to mind other initiatives to turn stereotypes on their head. Last year, a campaign by Suistudio depicted women in suits posing next to naked men. "We specialise in suits, but we're not dressing men," the campaign declared. In another project, artist Eli Rezkallah reversed the genders in retro ads to point out their sexist messaging.

Although Gaga said she was initially worried that "all that would matter was what I wore to this red carpet," in this case, her choice of clothing actually ended up amplifying the message she wanted to make.

Cover image: Denis Makarenko /


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