Every Time Molly Ringwald Has Reflected on Her Iconic ‘80s Outfits



Molly Ringwald.
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Molly Ringwald has been a fashion trailblazer for decades thanks to her iconic movie looks.

Ringwald was a rom-com darling throughout the 1980s and starred in several legendary movies, including Pretty in Pink, The Breakfast Club and Sixteen Candles. Alongside her phenomenal performances, the actress also captured the essence of the era with her various looks.

While Ringwald has been praised for her fashion choices, she has acknowledged not all of her looks have lived up to her expectations.

“Style is very individual,” Ringwald said in a 2009 interview with WWD. “You can’t just look in a magazine and say, ‘Oh, wow, that looks great on that person, therefore it will look great on me.’ I think no matter what, you have to feel comfortable. That’s how I always judge something. Even if it’s, like, this great skin-tight dress, you know, if I don’t feel comfortable in it, it’s not stylish.”

Keep scrolling to see everything Ringwald has said about her most memorable ‘80s outfits:

‘Facts of Life’

Following her time on Different Strokes, Ringwald joined the Facts of Life cast. She played Molly Parker for two seasons and recalled her character being a “spunky little feminist.”

“She was supposed to be a real feminist,” she said to Who What Wear in February 2024. “I had the suspenders, I think I wore a tie.”

The ‘Tempest’ Premiere

Ringwald revealed to Harper’s Bazaar that she picked out the white dress herself for her first red carpet for her film debut in 1982. She recalled spending around $200 for the look and teasing she thought that was a lot of money at the time

“I like the pleating, I like the sleeves, I like the color,” she reflected. “I completely stand by this look. I love everything about it, I would totally wear that today.”

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‘Sixteen Candles’

For the coming-of-age movie, Ringwald’s wardrobe was inspired by her personality. She shared with Who What Wear in February 2024 that she and the costume designer went shopping together so that she could get a feel for what Ringwald would gravitate towards.

“The clothes that I wore were everything that I would have worn,” she said to the outlet while noting the iconic bridesmaid dress was the only exception. “The dress was supposed to be the one that I wasn’t really supposed to like.”

Ringwald admitted she found the dress to be “kind of pretty” and joked that she can’t believe it didn’t catch on fire while filming the birthday cake scene.

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‘Pretty in Pink’

While Ringwald loved and took most of the clothes from Pretty in Pink, there was one look she absolutely disagreed with: the poofy pink prom dress.

“When the dress showed up, I thought, ‘What is this? How could anyone look good in that?’ It’s a triangle! The inverted-triangle silhouette made it really difficult to wear,” she recalled to Vogue in March 2021. “Plus, it was the color of Pepto-Bismol! There were so many different shades of pink that could’ve been chosen, but that one was brutal.”

Ringwald shared that she “burst into tears” when she first saw the gown, which was designed by Molly Vance, and that her teacher at the time reprimanded her for her reaction.

“She said I was being rude, but it was truly just a visceral reaction,” she explained to the outlet. “I understand how iconic that dress is now, but I was so bummed out at the time.”

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‘The Breakfast Club’

Ringwald’s classic look from The Breakfast Club was not what she was meant to wear originally. The actress explained to Who What Wear that when the costume arrived on set in Chicago, it didn’t match what she had in mind and noted it was “very flattering” and “dated.” Director John Hughes noticed how Ringwald wasn’t thrilled about the look so the pair went shopping to pick out some new clothes.

“I picked out everything that I’m wearing [in the movie], pretty much,” she recalled. “Most of it came from Ralph Lauren. The boots, the belt, the skirt, the top — that was all Ralph Lauren.”

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1987 Oscars

Ringwald stunned on the red carpet wearing a black Chanel gown. She confessed to Harper Bazaar she still has the look in her closet.

“I love the dress,” she gushed. “I think it’s very chic and very simple and a lot shorter than a lot of the gowns people were wearing.”

The Pick-Up Artist

Ringwald explained to Who What Wear that she only has one look for the movie and it was designed by her good friend Colleen Atwood.



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