Figure skating costumes are usually a bit over the top, but sometimes the rhinestones and striking colors amount to hideous outfits. From female ice skaters to male skaters and even couples, kitsch costumes may even stand in the way of the coveted medals.
See the worst figure skating costumes ever, fashion disasters that don’t even belong in the sales rack at a Halloween costume store, let alone in an Olympic arena, during an event watched by hundreds of millions of people.
Danielle O’Brien and Gregory Merriman (Australia) – 2014 Sochi Olympics
One of the worst fashion disasters at the Sochi Olympics consisted of the matching costumes of Australian ice skaters Danielle O’Brien and Gregory Merriman. The clashing of neon green and purple was bad enough, but the patches, polka dots and overall circus vibe really sent their outfits over the top.
Galina Efremenko (Ukraine) – 2004 European Championship
Tassles that looked like shredded paper towels have mercifully went out of style on the ice rink, much to the dismay of Ukranian ice skater Galina Efremenko. One of the worst figure skating costumes ever, this Kleenex factory reject was simply the least inspired outfit of the ladies short program at the 2004 European Championship.
Stéphane Lambiel (Switzerland) – 2006 Turin Olympics
Proving that men can hold their own on the ice when it comes to bad fashion, Stéphane Lambiel managed to win a silver medal despite his horrible outfit. His zebra striped top with a bright orange collar was bad enough, but the Swiss skater managed to top it with blue gloves covered in glittered.
Ann Patrice McDonough – 2004 U.S. Figure Skating Championships
Björk’s 2001 Academy Awards swan dress looks positively subtle compared to the full Kleenex swan that adorned ice skater Ann Patrice McDonough in 2004. Complete with feathers that looked like a collection of toilet paper samples, the outfit was was truly accomplished, if the goal was to make the worst figure skating costumes ever list.
Miki Ando (Japan) – 2008 Grand Prix Figure Skating Final (Seoul)
Mixing electric blue with bright pink is bad enough, but what really takes this costume to the next level is the zipper-like glittery embelishments along with the orchid detailing. While the craftmanship is exsquisite, the costume ended up wearing the skater and outshining the actual performance.
Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy (Germany) – European Championship 2010
A clown costume is instant kitsch, but two-time world champions Savchenko and Szolkowy designed their entire performance at the 2010 European Championship around the concept. From the “Send in the Clowns” background music to the face paint, their matching outfits are clearly among the worst figure skating costumes ever.
Carolina Kostner (Italy) – 2006 Turin Olympics
One way to stand out on the ice rink is to literally sparkle, but some ice skaters take it way too far. Multicolored rhinestones suffocate this otherwise interesting costume, up to the point where even Las Vegas showgirls would have a hard time competing with Carolina Kostner at the 2006 Olympic Games.
Lejeanne Marais (South Africa) – 2009 World Championship
Lime green is bad enough, but to make it to the top of the worst figure skating costumes ever you need much more. Marais delivered in 2009, combining nude netting with a peek-a-boo belly button and fishing-lures galore. The end result could influence even the most impartial judge against the ice skater who enters the ring in this costume.
Tonya Harding – 1994 U.S. Championship
One of the biggest names in US ice skating, Tonya Harding was well-known for her love of rhinestones before the scandal that ended her career. Besides lacking sportsmanship, Harding seems to also have little taste, since most of her costumes featured too much glitter and lines that look flattering on absolutely nobody.
Johnny Weir (U.S.) – 2006 Turin Olympics
The swan struck again in 2006, this time in an even more striking form as part of Johnny Weir’s costume. The American skater is known for his extravagant fashion choices both on and off the ice rink, but when it comes to the worst figure skating costumes ever, he could never top this one.