Drag Race Down Under: The 10 Best Runway Looks, So Far

Drag Race‘s first season Down Under has proven to be somewhat divisive amongst fans. There are so many loveable personalities and fun moments that have come from the first half of the season, but questionable decisions in the judging and production have left audiences scratching their heads in confusion.

The runway looks, however, have been so much fun. It is always interesting when an international season of Drag Race has its own distinct runway categories based on the country the queens are hailing from. This talented group from Australia and New Zealand have already shown, in just the first half of the season, that they have a unique perspective on fashion and camp with these 10 looks.

10 Art Simone: Born Naked (Episode 1)

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Art Simone came on to Drag Race Down Under as the most well-known queen and the most followed on social media, and it’s not hard to see why. Art has a unique and creative take on drag that’s quite, well, artsy.

Her “Born Naked” look for the first runway of the season was pretty showstopping. With one side of her body almost completely bare and without any distinct makeup and the other completely decked out in a glittering intergalactic ensemble, Art showed how we are all born naked and the rest is drag. This was a great introduction to Art and her high concept, high glam runway looks.

9 Maxi Shield: Ru-Cycled (Episode 4)

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Comedy queen Maxi Shield proved to be a great seamstress this episode, with her admitting she didn’t know how to sew until she got the call she would be on the show. She said she immediately took sewing lessons for challenges just like this and it paid off.

While not a revolutionary or new concept, Maxi executed her vision perfectly and told a specific story on the runway. The London punk, Vivienne Westwood-inspired ensemble played to Maxi’s comedy strengths and proved she could make a tough, non-stretch fabric work in her favor. After some underwhelming performances, Maxi shone through in this knockout of a look.


8 Karen From Finance: No Place Like Home (Episode 1)

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Karen From Finance is another well-known queen coming on to this season and her comedy chops paid off in the first episode. Her “No Place Like Home” runway look was the perfect blend of fashion and camp, with a great dress and fascinator combo, contrasting the drunken mess of a performance she was giving on the runway.

Playing up the stereotype of an inebriated woman enjoying her time at the Melbourne Cup, Karen went so over the top it was easy to understand the look and the character, even if you’ve never been to Melbourne. Karen deservedly won this challenge thanks to this hysterical performance.

7 Karen From Finance: Sea Sickening (Episode 2)

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The “Sea Sickening” category brought some of the best looks of the season so far, as it appears many times on this list. Karen’s take was another slam dunk, combining glamour and comedy. Her sequin jumpsuit fit her like a glove and showed off her curves.

Made to resemble a shark, the hood was perfectly designed to work on her head and draped over her shoulders with red sequins and teeth along the hem, giving the illusion she was coming out of the mouth. Combined with a finishing touch of fish carcass earrings and fins on her arms, this look was another stellar outing from Karen.

6 Etcetera Etcetera: Ru-Cycled (Episode 4)

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Etcetera placed “low” in this episode, which confused many fans. For a challenge to make something glamourous out of unconventional materials, Etcetera created something whimsical but also rooted in reality. She said she took inspiration from starlets and photographs from the 1920s, and the execution of this idea was well done.

Etcetera looked like she stepped off the set of a Georges Melies production, with a flowing lavender robe, glittering patterning across the fabric, and staff and headpiece calling to mind a fairy from early silent films. She also changed her makeup to fit the 1920s glamour theme, leading fans to say her “low” placement was not justified.

5 Elektra Shock: Ru-Cycled (Episode 4)

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Elektra Shock is a fan favorite queen this season who the judges and fellow contestants have critiqued for her “basic” drag. She has admitted she does not have the same amount of money to spend on garments as some of her peers and her looks are a bit rough around the edges because of this.

However, with a challenge that leveled the playing field and gave the queens equal opportunity to create a look out of unconventional materials, Elektra rose to the occasion. Creating a sleek floor-length gown completely from neckties, Elektra showed how deft she can be with some fabric and a sewing machine, and prompted Rupaul himself to congratulate her on listening and applying their critiques.

4 Anita Wig’lit: Sea Sickening (Episode 2)

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Another fan favorite queen, the upbeat and positive Anita won this week’s Snatch Game episode with a hilarious performance in the challenge and a beautiful runway look. An intricate and detailed bodice with garter details worked well with her hair, which was styled to appear as if it was floating underwater.

The darker color palette was an engaging contrast to Anita’s effervescent and colorful personality, and the makeup was well done and pulled the whole look together. This was a top-tier night for Anita and cemented her as one of the most loveable queens this season.

3 Coco Jumbo: Sea Sickening (Episode 2)

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Coco Jumbo was another queen like Elektra who got critiqued on the quality of her runway looks. But her “Sea Sickening” runway was quite the showstopper. Clearly taking inspiration from Disney’s The Little Mermaid and the iconic, drag queen-inspired Ursula, Coco looked mesmerizing on the runway.

Her makeup looked flawless as always, and her hair was a more detailed interpretation of Ursula’s short white up-do – a beehive adorned with dark accents, dreadlocks, braids, and even fish bones. The dress was a shiny black pleather material that was pleated to resemble the tentacled villainess. A simple concept executed well with attention to detail, this was Coco’s finest runway moment.

2 Etcetera Etcetera: Sea Sickening (Episode 2)

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Etcetera took a different approach to this runway category and created one of the most memorable outfits of the night. Inspired by old deep sea diving costumes, her garment was old-fashioned, yet very stylish and fun.

The look of rust, barnacles, and fun accessories showed attention to fun and detail, and the beautiful hair, makeup, and cinched waist showed that Etcetera was not forgetting to make the look fashionable at the same time. The main attraction was the helmet that she took on and off with a working flap in the middle, which elevated the whole look and made it that much sillier.

1 Scarlet Adams: Sea Sickening (Episode 2)

While Scarlet is a frontrunner in the competition, her history with blackface and making fun of POC and other cultures in her drag performances makes it hard to watch her on the show. Judging objectively, though, this look is a knockout. Resembling a glimmering coral reef, it’s hypnotizing with its iridescent fabric, perfectly constructed aquatic shapes, and fish hiding in different places.

Stretching from her foot to well above her head, this fantastical creation is hard to ignore, also aided by the illusion of a wet, water-drenched wig. Hopefully, Scarlet has learned from her past wrongdoings, takes accountability, and makes strides to lift up the voices that she has hurt in the past.

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Ben Orosz (21 Articles Published)

Ben has a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Film Studies from Brock University and is a list writer for ScreenRant.

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