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The Vampire Diaries: Elena's 5 Best Outfits (& 5 Worst)

Nina Dobrev's Elena from the CW's The Vampire Diaries has some seriously cool outfits... and some mistakes. Here are the best and worst.

Over the years on The Vampire Diaries, Elena Gilbert juggles school, friends, family and enviable love life all while saving herself, the people she loves and the town of Mystic Falls from just about every supernatural creature imaginable. That's a lot for a young woman to handle and while some things may slip through the cracks, Elena never loses her sense of style. Elena's taste ranges from denim minis to girly dresses to jaw-dropping evening gowns. It just depends on the occasion.

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Elena's casual look is always on point: jeans, form-fitting tanks and henleys, kick-ass boots and eye-catching accessories. Elena's life may be chaos, but she makes very few missteps when it comes to her fashion choices. We picked out a few of our faves and some that fall flat. Here are Elena's five best and worst outfits.

10 Best: Ball Gown For Mikaelsons' Party

When Elena receives an invitation to the Mikaelsons for dancing, cocktails and celebration on season 3's "Dangerous Liaisons," it's time to dress to impress. Especially when Elena is summoned by the Original witch herself, Esther. This party is a black-tie affair, and Elena doesn't disappoint. Her full-length ball gown is strapless with a fitted bodice. According to costume designer Leigh Leverett, the gold and black shimmery confection was found in a vintage shop in Atlanta, GA. It's the perfect choice to compliment Elena's long dark hair which she wears swept to the side and her olive skin. She completes the ensemble with elbow-length black gloves.

9 Worst: Nurse Costume

In a town where scary creatures are a threat year-round, celebrating Halloween seems unnecessary which may be why Elena's costume from season 1's "Haunted" is so uninspired. It's also unnecessary since she and Stefan spend the evening tracking down new vamp Vicki who has blood on the brain. Elena's top barely stays closed and the bottom is so short, the only thing preventing her from flashing anyone within eyesight when Vicki tosses her around like a sack of laundry are hideous white granny tights. The only upside to this disastrous costume is the casual observer can't tell fake blood from real.

8 Best: Figure-Flattering Bikini

Elena's not shy about showing off her figure. She's often clad in denim mini skirts, tiny cut-off shorts and tight jeans. Her dresses vary in length, but it's rare to see her without her shoulders or arms exposed. But it's not until season 6 when the gang heads to a local swimming hole to cool off and enjoy what's left of the summer, that Elena strips down to a bikini for the first time.

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Her suit consists of a keyhole top and floral bottoms. This mismatched two-piece works because the aqua-colored flowers found in the bottom's design complements her top. Elena's swimwear is a definite do.

7 Worst: Miss Mystic Falls Costume

Replicating the look of a young lady during the Civil War era for Mystic Falls' annual Founder's Day Celebration during season 1 is an inescapable part of being a member of the Miss Mystic Falls court. Some fashionistas might be fans of Victorian garb with a southern twist, but there are reasons why binding corsets and humongous hoop skirts went out of style. This embroidered nightmare is more flattering for someone with an hourglass figure, but all those layers swallow Elena.

6 Best: Bridesmaid Dress For Jo And Alaric's Wedding

Who says bridesmaid dresses have to be ugly? Elena's purple dress with the mesh paneling and long gathered skirt is an epic fashion moment, giving Elena a proper send-off on the season 6 finale, "I'll Be Thinking of You All the While."

The top half of the dress is so delicately ornate it requires no jewelry, and as usual, Elena keeps her make up natural. This dress was designed with dancing in mind and chosen for Elena for the same reason. It's what she's wearing as she and Damon share their tearjerking last waltz. In those moments, the dress shouldn't detract from the couple but be as fluid as their movements.

5 Worst: Miss Mystic Falls Pageant Gown

There's nothing wrong with the royal blue evening gown Elena dons for the Miss Mystic Falls pageant during season 1, but there isn't anything particularly right about it either. It flatters her petite figure without being too revealing. But the dress is too plain, especially in comparison to some of her more memorable fashion moments.

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It's a fine line between simplicity and dull. Elena is truly outshined by Caroline and her strapless green dress, sleek peek-a-boo inspired hairstyle and thigh-high slit. That's the way to achieve elegance without any over the top frills.

4 Best: Senior Prom Dress

Elena may have stolen Caroline's prom dress right out from under her nose on season 4's "Pictures of You," but the organza floor-length gown designed by Theia looks like it was made for Elena. Sadly, Elena's lack of humanity makes this rite of passage a night to remember for all of the wrong reasons. But just because Elena tries to murder her best friends, doesn't mean fans can't appreciate the jewel-toned dress and the sweetheart neckline. This dress is bound to have high school girls searching for look-a-likes for decades to come.

3 Worst: Elena's Cheerleading Uniform

Elena's cheerleading uniform makes this list for one reason only: it represents an Elena who never really exists. Before her parents' deaths, Elena isn't content to stand on the sidelines and date a football player. At the start of her junior year on the series pilot, she rejoins the squad, but she isn't motivated to continue. Her decision emphasizes how Stefan gives her the confidence to be her own person. Elena returns to cheerleading for one afternoon her senior year during season 4 after flipping her humanity switch. Again, this decision reinforces the incongruity between Elena's life and that of a normal teenager.

2 Best: Founder's Party Dress

On season 1, episode 4, "Family Ties," Elena brings her A-game for the first time. Usually dressed in the typical uniform for a high school girl -- jeans, tank tops, cute jackets -- Elena slips into a short, strapless red and gold dress -- cocktail chic. Elena's style through most of season 1 isn't as developed as Caroline's or Bonnie's. As the series' goes on, Elena elevates her look. Elena rarely misses the mark when it comes to dressing for town events, especially with at least one handsome Salvatore brother as an accessory.

1 Worst: The '70s Decade Dance

School functions are rarely a good time for the gang, but it's hard to tell which is likely to kill them first during the '60s decade dance -- the infamous Klaus or the horrible outfits. Elena's only choices are Twiggy or sexy hippy, so that's a no-win situation right there. Nobody should have to face an Original ("the biggest, baddest vampire around") wearing a purple patterned, fire-retardant mini dress and white knee-high boots that only the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders can pull off. In this case, this is an outfit Elena literally doesn't want to be caught dead in.

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