Fame and fashion go hand-in-hand in the world of pop music. Most singers spare no time or money when dolling up to look as good as possible on the red carpet, on the stage or during any public outing.
When the making or breaking of a career can depend on the cover or a tabloid or the lens of a paparazzo, glamour is the focal point of most celebritiesââ‚¬â„¢ lives.
But sometimes, they get it wrong.
And thatââ‚¬â„¢s why Mot (Mode) magazine has been catching the unwittingly eccentric and spontaneously un-stylish with its annual ââ‚¬Å“Worst Dressedââ‚¬ award since 2002.
Taking into account the clothes and make up the artists wear on stage and on the street throughout the year, dozens of journalists from Mot and other publications across Vietnam vote on which celebrity boasts the most appalling wardrobe.
But last year, voters couldnââ‚¬â„¢t choose between the four nominees: actress-model Phi Thanh Van, model Vu Thu Phuong, and singers Thu Minh and Ho Quynh Huong. None received half of the journalistsââ‚¬â„¢ votes, a requirement to ââ‚¬Å“winââ‚¬ the title.
Model-turned-actress Ngo Thanh Van's elegant and chic wardrobe helped her win "Most Stylistic"
Singer Thu Minh has held the title four times, though this is a record that is more of a career stain than career-booster.
In 2008, Minh, singer My Le and MC Thanh Bach were announced as the nominees for the ââ‚¬Å“Worst Dressed.ââ‚¬ The artists reacted by organizing a press conference and in the presence of their lawyers and representatives of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, they asked Mot magazine for an apology and threatened to take the publication to court.
My Le said she was shocked at the nomination because she had never been involved in a scandal related to the way she dressed. She also wondered what the criteria for the selection was.
Although representatives from the magazine explained that the three artists were just nominees, not the ââ‚¬Å“losers,ââ‚¬ the artists still called the nomination something to be ashamed of. But their fury has since faded without a lawsuit.
Vietnamese-American model-turned-singer Nathan Lee, a close friend of Thu Minh, said naming Minh as the worst dressed was ââ‚¬Å“nonsense.ââ‚¬
He said that since the public couldnââ‚¬â„¢t vote, only a small clique of insiders could, Lee discounted the awards.
Singer Dam Vinh Hung has also held the title three times, but heââ‚¬â„¢s never complained and instead has gotten better and better reviews of his style and clothes each year.
Though critics have called him a show off for his expensive get ups, Hung was still named the ââ‚¬Å“Most Trendsettingââ‚¬ artist of 2008.
Lee returned to his point that there was no way to judge such awards properly.
ââ‚¬Å“There is no proof, no particular costumes voted on, and I do not know the criteria either. Honestly, Thu Minh has a good figure and her style suits it,ââ‚¬ said Lee.
But the worst-dressed ââ‚¬Å“honorââ‚¬ isnââ‚¬â„¢t just about the starsââ‚¬â„¢ aesthetic taste, according to Mot.
The magazine says the criteria for the ââ‚¬Å“worst dressedââ‚¬ includes whether or not the artist was involved in scandals and whether or not the artist wore ââ‚¬Å“suggestiveââ‚¬ clothes out of line with cultural norms in Vietnam. The celebrities are also judged on their conduct in public and whether or not they appeared rude or polite at various events.
Best of the best
The magazineââ‚¬â„¢s annual awards also honor celebrities for being the ââ‚¬Å“Most Trendsettingââ‚¬, ââ‚¬Å“Most Stylisticââ‚¬, ââ‚¬Å“Most Impressiveââ‚¬ and ââ‚¬Å“Most Courteous.ââ‚¬
The 2009ââ‚¬â„¢s selection, on January 15, honored model-turned-singer Ho Ngoc Ha with both ââ‚¬Å“Most Trendsettingââ‚¬ and ââ‚¬Å“Most Impressive.ââ‚¬ Ha received 75 percent and 60 percent of the votes cast by the journalists, respectively.
It was the third time Ha has taken the most trendsetting title. She has been lauded again and again as an artist whose eye-catching costumes bring out the best in her voluptuous figure.
Model-turned-actress Ngo Thanh Vanââ‚¬â„¢s elegant and chic wardrobe helped her win ââ‚¬Å“Most Stylisticââ‚¬ with 87 percent of the votes. Male model and actor Binh Minh won ââ‚¬Å“Most Courteousââ‚¬.
Reported by Kim