The singer — dressed in a cartoonish, multicolored dress with a square-shaped headband-like contraption on her head — kissed her hubby, actor Russell Brand, and hugged a few people, including Adele, whom she was up against, before heading to the stage to accept her award from actress Katie Holmes.
"Oh my goodness! Thank you so much," Perry said. "This has been a night of firsts. This is my second Moonman. I'm very proud of the song it stands for, which is 'Firework.' I feel like I am doing something right when I sing that song. So thanks to everyone who helped to create it."
She thanked her team and then continued, after the crowd simmered down a bit, "To all of y'all out there! Thank you so much! To all my fans! And last but not least, my husband!"
The cameras focused on Brand just as she was thanking him, and he was visibly emotional.
Perry was the most nominated artist this year, with nine nods total. She ultimately collected two for the evening, including an award for Best Collaboration on "E.T." with Kanye West. She also competed for Best Female Video, Best Art Direction, Best Direction, Best Editing, Best Special Effects and Best Cinematography.
The 28th annual MTV Video Music Awards have wrapped, but the real action is just getting started! Stick with MTV News for winners, fashion pics, video and behind-the-scenes stories about everything that went down. Visit VMA.MTV.com for the latest.