How to Get the Celeb Look for Less

Our favorite actresses may have the money and connections to step out in gorgeous high-end designs that would cost us more than a few months of mortgage payments, but you can still dress like a star without having to spend like one. Here are some ways to look like Hollywood royalty on a pauper’s budget. Hey, is that the paparazzi we see coming? 

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Meryl Streep

The star of The Iron Lady looked glamorous, sophisticated and -- yes, warm -- at the movie’s U.K. premiere earlier this month. If the film doesn’t earn her some serious awards this year, Streep’s long Stella McCartney black dress, paired with a bright blue poncho-style coat, black boots and a statement-making gold necklace should at least give her some mega style points.

Get Streep’s Dress for Less

Streep chose a gorgeous Stella McCartney maxi dress for her premiere, but you can still look star-worthy in this twist-front style that sells for just a fraction of the cost.

Soma Sami maxi dress, $89,

Get Streep’s Coat for Less

A bright cape or poncho-style coat is the perfect topper for a long dress for evening, but also looks chic paired with jeans on the weekend.

American Apparel cape coat, $170,

American Apparel

Get Streep’s Necklace for Less

A great, chunky gold statement necklace adds instant glam to a black dress. Perfect for collecting an Oscar or just dazzling a dinner date, don’t you think? No one needs to know this one cost less than you’d spend on popcorn, candy and a couple of movie tickets.

Hive & Honey necklace, $38,

Jennifer Aniston

You don’t have to have Aniston’s yoga-perfect body to look chic in an outfit inspired by the sleek black, menswear-inspired look she sported at a screening of the Lifetime series Five in New York last fall.

Get Aniston’s Vest for Less

The slanted zipper gives a classic black vest a modern twist. Wear it over a tank or cami for a sexier look like Jen’s, or with a blouse or under a blazer when you want to keep things on the conservative side.

J.Jill knit vest, $40,


Get Aniston’s Slacks for Less

Straight-leg black slacks are essential for any woman’s wardrobe – celebrity or not. We love the little bit of stretch in this style – Jen may not need any forgiveness when it comes to fit, but we’ll take all we can get!

Ann Taylor Metropolitan pants, $88,

Ann Taylor

Vanessa L. Williams

Black lace could not have looked more lovely than on Vanessa L. Williams at the premiere of Dolphin Tale last year. Simple gold hoop earrings, a gold watch and a pretty black clutch make our favorite Housewife far from desperate.

Get Williams’ Dress for Less

This lace bell-sleeve number is a perfect addition for your LBD collection. Wear it with black opaque tights in the winter, or with strappy sandals in warmer weather. Snow or sun, rain or wind – it’s a breeze.


Ronni Nicole lace dress, $80,


Get Williams’ Earrings for Less

There’s no need to jump through hoops for expensive-looking jewelry. These oversized gold earrings worked for Vanessa, and we think they’ll become go-tos for you, as well.


Asos gold hoop earrings, $9,


Laura Dern

There’s something – shall we say – Enlightened about the cool polish of Dern's menswear-style suit. We love the cool casual feel of this slightly slouchy style the actress wore to last month’s CNN Heroes: An All-Star Tribute event. Sharp and sexy. A stylish suit, simple jewelry and a feminine clutch? Yep, definitely Enlightened.

Get Dern’s Suit for Less

You needn’t spend a fortune to look like a million bucks. This figure-flattering jacket and wide-leg pants is classy in the boardroom, but also looks great for evening with sexy pumps, a cami and great jewelry.


Tahari by ASL Woman pantsuit, $140,


Get Dern’s Clutch for Less

Swap out your work tote for a cool black quilted clutch to go from work to play in style.


Express quilt stitch clutch, $40,


Helen Mirren

Celebs like Helen Mirren know how to work a bright jewel tone dress with some fab accessories. Up your star quality by following her lead from the AFI Life Achievement Award red carpet last summer and dazzle with a metallic purse, shoes and jewelry. Oh, and remember, even when it’s June in California, Hollywood royalty loves to work a scarf.

Get Mirren’s Dress for Less

A front twist-front adds interest to a jersey dress, but the style is still simple enough to serve as a canvas for some great accessories. Good thing you’ll have plenty of cash left over for shoes!

Mossimo dress, $21,


Get Mirren’s Shoes for Less

Can’t decide between silver and gold? Opt for both! These sassy, sparking peep-toe pumps are perfect for a dame, no matter how famous she may be.

Enzo Angiolini Maiven pumps, $89,


Viola Davis

In a far, far cry from her maid’s uniform in The Help, Viola Davis wowed in a winter cocktail dress at last month’s New York premiere of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Add in her shiny peep-toe pumps and box clutch and it’s a fashion white-out.

Get Davis’s Dress for Less

Black is great, but white, done right, can be wonderful. This cozy style is sexy in its slim fit, but still comes off as warm and cozy. Perfect for a night out – or in.


Victoria’s Secret sweater dress, $50,

Victoria's Secret

Get Davis’s Clutch for Less

A small box clutch in a neutral tone looks just right next to a white dress. This style comes with a removable chain, so you can strap it on if you need to have your hands free.


Expressions NYC box clutch, $45,



The Material Girl knows how to rock a look and, trust us, she was testing the power of speakers everywhere with this body-skimming L’Wren Scott embellished dress, fishnets and pumps she wore to the London premiere of her film W.E. last fall.

Get Madonna’s Dress for Less

Express yourself -- Madonna-style in this pretty black dress sheath dress dotted with poppies.


Teri Jon silk dress, $179,


Get Madonna’s Fishnets for Less

Yes, fishnet hose can certainly scream Rocky Horror Picture Show, but they can also add a subtle sexiness when paired with a longer-length dress and classic pumps. Hey, if it works for Madonna at 53, it can work for you, too.


Berkshire fishnets, $10,

Bare Necessitites

Jessica Lange

We couldn’t have been more enthralled with Jessica Lange’s ultra-creepy role on American Horror Story, and we’re equally wowed by how beautiful she looked in this pretty blue dress and metallic pumps at the show’s premiere last October.

Get Lange’s Dress for Less

It’s nothing but blue skies in this pretty drape-front dress. The cap sleeves are similar to the style Lange wore, but the criss-cross front is a little more forgiving for us non-celebs out there.

Suzi Chin for Maggy Boutique dress, $148,


Get Lange’s Shoes for Less

A snakeskin-style metallic platform pump ups the glam quotient when paired with a pastel-colored dress. Shine on!


Michael Michael Kors Lesly pump, $83,


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First Published January 17, 2012

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