Most of the standout ad campaigns of 2019 have something in common: They spotlight individuals and causes that deserve more attention — like how Stella McCartney's fall campaign called on consumers to protect the planet (and was accompanied by a video series, "How to Save the World," which shared information on the climate crisis) and Marine Serre's visuals for the same season envisioned an apocalyptic world where culture and nature no longer exist.
Established brands and up-and-coming labels alike used the opportunity to communicate a bigger message to their audience, outside of simply peddling product. A lot of it had to do with casting. For her first Fenty campaign, Rihanna paid tribute to Kwame Brathwaite, a major figure in the "Black Is Beautiful" movement, by putting her black-and-white photographs next to the clothing. Elsewhere, Brandon Maxwell highlighted the people who have devoted their careers to building his brand: his employees.
Other luxury labels tapped '90s supermodels for unforgettable images: Shalom Harlow posed for Versace clad in a floral and striped bell-bottom jumpsuit and chunky platform sneakers; Kate Moss modeled a bouffant red dress in the Northern English countryside for Alexander McQueen; and Naomi Campbell stripped down to her knickers for her first #MyCalvins campaign. And when they weren't picking talent from a pool of still-stunning runway veterans, brands were looking to chart-topping twenty-somethings, like Ariana Grande (Givenchy) and Harry Styles (Gucci).
As the year comes to a close and the Spring 2020 campaigns begin to trickle in (we can't believe it, either), we've chosen our favorite fashion ads from 2019, which you can browse in the gallery below.