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She Slays in Both Ways: 19+ of the Best Buffy Summers Outfits

Buffy's an icon. Fashion and otherwise.

buffy running in her teal coat in Buffy s2

When you love shows that came out in the ’90s and or early 2000s, you can’t help but notice the fashion—back when low-rise jeans were worn to death, chunky heels were really loved, and people wore mini dresses and skirts over jeans. On Buffy the Vampire Slayer, there were lots of questionable outfits for various characters. Mainly Willow (Alyson Hannigan), Tara (Amber Benson), and Xander (Nicholas Brendon) wore some cringey outfits, but I’m here to talk about the iconic slayer we love, Buffy (Sarah Michelle Gellar).

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(It’s also hard to talk about Buffy without mentioning another thing about it that should be a relic of the past: creator Joss Whedon, due to reports of toxic, abusive behavior that just seem to keep on coming.)

With Buffy, most of her best outfits are attached to moments, whether they be heartbreaking, badass, or something else altogether. And it’s no secret that Sarah Michelle Gellar could look good in practically anything. She’s a goddess! Enough of my gushing, though. Let’s get down to her best (if not notable) outfits from the entire series.

Season 1 outfits

buffy season 1 outfits
(The WB)

Season 1 isn’t a favorite for many (unless you’re someone who loves it, and kudos to you if so!) and some of the fashion is REALLY dated. Of course it was, since season 1 was filmed in 1996. Though some of Buffy’ outfits are really cute. The ones I see as being 3 of the best in the season are from the following episodes:

  • “Puppet Show” (Episode 9)
  • “Out of Mind, Out of Sight” (Episode 11)
  • “Prophecy Girl” (Episode 12)

Season 2 outfits

buffy season 2 outfits
(The WB)

The fashion in season 2 is a step up from season 1. Buffy definitely dresses more mature and that might be due to the changes she goes through. It’s a season full of intensity for her and those she cares about. The looks I believe are some of her best are from the following episodes:

  • “Reptile Boy” (Episode 5)
  • “Ted” (Episode 11)
  • “Becoming, Part 1” (Episode 21)
  • “Becoming, Part 2” (Episode 22)

Season 3 outfits

buffy season 3 outfits
(The WB)

Season 3 marks the end of high school for our beloved characters, and poor Buffy goes through it the whole season. Her outfits also take a bit of a nosedive, but this is the season we get the ICONIC red leather pants look. In the same episode, she and Faith (Eliza Dushku) have a very intense fight scene. (It’s so tension filled. Subtext alert!) Some of her best looks of the same season come from these episodes:

  • “Homecoming” (Episode 5)
  • “Bad Girls” (Episode 14)
  • “The Prom (Episode 20)
  • “Graduation Day: Part 1 (Episode 21)

Season 4 outfits

buffy season 4 outfits
(The WB)

I already made my stance on season 4 clear, so I won’t bother repeating myself (for your sake and mine). It’s also a season where Buffy doesn’t serve a lot of great looks. Hilariously enough 2 of the looks I believe are her best in the season are from the same episode. Yes, the sushi pjs made the cut because they are lowkey iconic. Below are the episodes for the looks:

  • “Goodbye Iowa” (Episode 14)
  • “The Yoko Factor” (Episode 20)
  • “Restless” (Episode 22)

Season 5 outfits

buffy during "Into the Woods" episode
(The WB)

Call me biased because I consider this one of the best seasons of the show. But almost every outfit Buffy wears this season is great. She shows off a lot of layered looks, lots of leather pants (I’m into faux leather though), and her hair is chef’s kiss. Therefore, I’m going to be wild and say this is her best season in terms of outfits.

Season 6 outfits

buffy season 6 outfits

Misery loves company and sure has a lot of it during season 6. Which is reflected in some of Buffy’s fashion choices. Such as when she’s wearing really comfy clothing or wearing the Doublemeat uniform. Naturally she does have some good outfits that I think are worth mentioning. Some of the best season 6 Buffy outfits are from the following episodes:

  • “Once More, with Feeling” (Episode 7)
  • “Wrecked” (Episode 9)
  • “Dead Things” (Episode 13)

Season 7 outfits

buffy season 7 outfits

It’s so unfortunate that season 7 doesn’t have as many memorable outfits. Even Buffy’s final outfit was pretty average. Which isn’t always a bad thing, but she’s had better looks. This isn’t to say her outfits are trash in the final season. She’s just dressed more like a mom that’s trying to mature. Sarah Michelle Gellar always looks good regardless. The episodes that the above outfits are featured in are:

  • “First Date” (Episode 14)
  • “Empty Places” (Episode 19)

(featued image: The WB)

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Vanessa Maki (she/her) is a queer Blerd and contributing writer for The Mary Sue. She first started writing for digital magazines in 2018 and her articles have appeared in Pink Advocate (defunct), The Gay Gaze (defunct), Dread Central and more. She primarily writes about movies, TV, and anime. Efforts to make her stop loving complex/villainous characters or horror as a genre will be futile.