The annual BET Awards lit up the Microsoft Theatre in Los Angeles last night, with a host of stars out celebrating "the best, brightest and most beautiful aspects of the Black experience".

Now in its 22nd year, the annual award ceremony showcases the best musicians of the year, and features thrilling performances on the night. This year's show, hosted for the second time in a row by Oscar-nominated actress Taraji P. Henson, included show-stopping performances from Lizzo, Mariah Carey, Lil Kim and more.

Mariah Carey performing. Photo: Getty

Doja Cat led the nominations with six, while Drake and Ari Lennox followed with four. Sadly, neither Doja Cat or Drake were present at the ceremony this year, but there were still plenty of dazzling looks on the red carpet.

Lizzo led the pack in an Old Hollywood-inspired iridescent navy gown by Gucci, featuring a daring thigh-high slit, plunging neckline and black feather trim on the hem and sleeves. Later in the night, she performed in a gold jumpsuit before changing into a form-fitting multicoloured striped gown.

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Host Taraji P.Henson included a number of costume changes during the night, but walked the red carpet in a sultry silver Tom Ford column gown, featuring a chain embellishment the snaked from one shoulder around her neck.

Mary J. Blige Mary took home the BET Her award, and wore a stunning white ensemble by Tony Ward Couture, featuring a one-sleeve crop top and ruched slit-leg skirt.

Billy Porter in Rick Owens. Photo: Getty

Singer, actor and all-round cultural icon Billy Porter continued his streak of avant garde ensembles in a striking grey look by Rick Owens, featuring a long loose top with exaggerated shoulders that reached up to his ears, and trailing trousers.

Kanye West made a surprise appearance. Photo: Getty

In sharp contrast was rapper Jack Harlow, one of the performers on the night, who kept it casual in a Lil Nas X t-shirt and jeans, while Kanye West made a surprise appearance wearing a black face mask and metallic bomber jacket as he helped honour Sean 'Diddy Combs' before receiving his Lifetime Achievement Award.

Click through the gallery above for more celeb looks.