Style & Grooming

Why Ezra Miller Is the Male Style Icon We Need Right Now

First a puffer gown, now a feathered cape – Ezra Miller is bringing drama to the red carpet and we’re here for it

I know, it’s too early for an end of year piece, but when it comes to the fashion king of the year award, Ezra Miller has already won. And he’s done it in just two looks.

The first, worn last week, a Moncler x Pierpaolo Piccioli puffer gown complete with a hood, gloves and a glossy black lip. The second, worn last night to the London premiere of his new film Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, an haute couture Givenchy cape embroidered with goose feathers, with silver makeup under his eyes and Harry Potter killing spell Avada Kedavra inked across his palms. According to a release from the house, this cape is called iconique. How apt.

And the Another Man cover star didn’t just wear these garments – he wore them, embodying a character for each and demonstrating that elusive ‘we are not actors, but we are acting’ modelling quality that separates the regular models from the supers, the rookies from the pros, the catalogue girls from the Kates.

In his puffer gown, which some people rudely likened to a sleeping bag, Miller looked almost regal, standing up straight with his hands gently clasped together and a calm, composed expression on his face. In his Givenchy cape, he looked practically messianic – part Jesus Christ, part Ziggy Stardust – holding his inked palms out as if in benediction. Both times, he gave drama.

Combined, these moments feel like the most authentically rebellious moment in pop cultural men’s style since Young Thug’s Jeffery album cover back in 2016.

For the reality is that, despite rapidly relaxing attitudes to gender and sexuality, and the widespread popularity of shows like RuPaul’s Drag Race (even among straight people), male celebrities still play it very safe when it comes to red carpet fashion. Even at the Met Gala, where celebrities are known (and encouraged) to push the fashion envelope further than usual, the vast majority of male attendees this year wore some sort of variation on a tailored suit. (Credit where credit’s due, then-Teen Vogue chief content officer Phillip Picardi wore a priest-like robe by Charles Jeffrey.) Sure, Alessandro Michele, Jared Leto and Chadwick Boseman pushed the boat out, but their efforts pale in comparison to Miller’s this month.

Modelling these looks, it’s clear that Miller had a very admirable and very attractive attitude of simultaneously giving zero fucks and giving 110 fucks. Zero fucks about the haters, 100 fucks about the fashun. This is big dick fashion energy personified.

Earlier this week, when asked in an interview with Hollywood Reporter if he identifies as queer, he replied: “Yeah, absolutely. Which is to say, I don’t identify. Like, fuck that. Queer just means no, I don’t do that. I don’t identify as a man. I don’t identify as a woman. I barely identify as a human.” I can’t help thinking of all Miller’s young LGBTQ fans, for whom these words – and his outfit choices – will represent a powerful act of defiance and solidarity.

In these turbulent times, where the leader of the free world is attempting to roll back recognition and protections of transgender people, there is something especially powerful about Miller’s very public refusal to conform to restrictive gender binaries and frankly anodyne male sartorial standards; for his commitment to being truly and comfortably himself in the public eye – even if that means wearing a cape covered in goose feathers.