The red carpet at the 86th Academy Awards has been a trail of classic black and cosmetic nude gowns. Who do you think is best dressed?

The 86th Academy Awards are heating up in LA and the same questions are burning on everyone’s lips – will Leo finally win an Oscar? Will the Woody Allen scandal ruin Aussie favourite Cate’s chances at the Best Actress gong? Where did the rest of Pharrell’s pants go?

We don’t have the answer to those questions just yet, but what we do have is a breakdown of the best looks from the 2014 Oscars red carpet…

Amy Adams

If ‘class and sophistication’ are the name of the game, Amy Adams is winning. Nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role for her savvy portrayal of Sydney Prosser in American Hustle, Adams always seems to nail red carpet style with casual elegance. We would’ve loved a little more excitement, but we’re happy with this look.

Angelina Jolie

No awkward leg thrusts this year. Ange references 1920s glamour with this shimmering ensemble. Her swept back hair and understated makeup complement the statement gown nicely.

Sandra Bullock

Talk about va-va-voom! The deep hue of this timeless gown suits Sandra’s complexion perfectly and is the right look for a Best Supporting Actress nominee…

Olivia Wilde

Is she still pregnant? Oh, I couldn’t tell. Olivia proves yet again that she’s the queen of rocking the baby bump. We do miss the bold colour of her Globes gown, though – isn’t black a bit boring, Liv?

Anne Hathaway

Using Gucci armour to protect her chest from any further criticism (she received a lot last year thanks to controversial nipple darts), Hathaway rocks the urban-chic look with her pixie-crop and hardware-inspired clutch.

Jennifer Lawrence

Everyone’s favourite Hollywood starlet has already taken a tumble, but in the style stakes she’s far from falling. Her glowing blood orange frock brings much-needed colour to this year’s carpet, but the style is a little underwhelming compared to last year’s epic Dior gown.

Margot Robbie

Sporting new dark locks and vixen makeup (talk about power eyebrows!), Aussie Margot Robbie taps into the head-to-toe black trend that is dominating this year. We’re not sure if it’s really working for her though; the darker hair and gown make the ex-Neighbours star seem severe and spooky.

Anna Kendrick

Finally a little fun – if only this dress wasn’t in boring black! Anna channels a spider-lady aesthetic with mesh webbing and spindly straps. The vamp look makes us wonder if Kendrick’s pining for her Twilight days.

Naomi Watts

Was “spider” an unofficial theme? Watts’ webbed necklace adds a cute collar to her top-to-toe white fluff look but again, I’m left feeling a little undewhelmed. Where’s the risk, Naomi?

Cate Blanchett

Looking like a crystalline elf (seems familiar), Cate’s favourite palette of natural nudes means a bang-on-trend gown at this year’s Oscars. Soft, old-Hollywood curls frame that mischevious smile, but the whole look is a little forgettable.

Penelope Cruz

Greek goddess in baby pink? We love it. The over-the-arm train adds glamour and impact while the simple black belt gives shape to the voluminous look. If only the hair was less ballerina-bun and more unrestrained-Aphrodite…

Emma Watson

She might not be on the best run of film choices but Emma’s certainly going down the right track style-wise. Looking effortlessly chic, her gentle up-do and crimson lip add impact to the metallic charcoal mesh of her gown. Not nominated for any awards this year, her look is perfect for an awards-show attendee expressing personal style over centre stage impact.

Lady Gaga

Everyone played it safe this year – everyone except the eternally-daring Gaga. We’re nuts (or should I say ga-ga?) for her Versace gown, the only really exciting thing on the carpet this year. The chiffon scarf-train is a tad unnecessary, but what do we expect from this outlandish pop star? Oozing glamour, sophistication and adventure (and without a slab of meat in sight), this is our favourite look from the 2014 Academy Awards.

The verdict: Let’s hope everyone on the carpet is as underwhelmed by the all-black versus all-natural gowns this year and starts taking risks at next year’s Oscars. With lots of classic sophistication on show, we think this year’s unofficial motto was “Better safe than sorry.”

Do you agree with our outfit break downs? Let us know your favourite Academy Awards dress on Facebook!