There’s our girl!!!
Rihanna, dripped in the almost newly released fashion brand FENTY, covers The New York Times’ T Magazine!
“So excited to be on @tmagazine’s first digital cover!! here’s a sneak peak of what’s to come from @fenty ,”Rihanna shared on Instagram!
Check out highlights from her interview + a sneak peek of what FENTY will offer this month!
On being the first black woman to have a maison with LVMH: “You’re going to be black wherever you go. And I don’t know if it’s unfortunate or fortunate, because I love being black. So, sorry for those who don’t like it — that’s the first thing you see before you even hear my voice. There are also other factors: I’m young. I’m new to the family. I’m a woman. Those factors do come into play, but I will not apologize for them, and I will not back down from being a woman, from being black, from having an opinion. I’m running a company and that’s exactly what I came here to do. I don’t know if it makes people uncomfortable or not, but that’s not even my business, you know? I do know that the reason I’m here is not because I’m black. It’s because of what I have to offer. That’s what they’re invested in. And the fact that I’m black is just that: a fact.”
On collaborating with LVMH: “I’ve been slowly evolving throughout the fashion world. First wearing it, buying it, being recognized for my style and then collaborating with brands. I never just wanted to put my name on something and sell my license. I’m very hands-on, so I wanted to take it slowly and gain respect as a designer. I already had a relationship with them after the Versailles campaign and the makeup line, so they extended the offer to me and it was a no-brainer because LVMH is a machine. Bernard Arnault was so enthusiastic; he trusted me and my vision.”
On what the Fenty person’s relationship to masculinity and femininity: “I use myself as the muse. It’s sweatpants with pearls, or a masculine denim jacket with a corset. I feel like we live in a world where people are embracing every bit of who they are. Look at Jaden Smith, Childish Gambino. They dare you to tell them not to.”
On using her family name as the anchor of her company: “I used to be afraid to step into the whole celebrity makeup world. I saw brands like Hilary Duff and Hannah Montana have so much success [in the aughts], but it got to a place where they were so oversaturated in the market that it diluted their personal brands. It made me think, “I’m not going to do this, because you lose your respect and credibility,” and so every collaboration I did outside of music, I used Fenty so that you didn’t have to hear the word “Rihanna” every time you saw something that I did. So Rihanna stayed the music, the person. But these other brands are called Fenty.”
On where she gets her freedom from: “No, because even within being Rihanna, that freedom didn’t exist for a while. “ (2nd album) Good Girl Gone Bad” is where I started to take the reins: “I’m going to do whatever I want to do, I’m taking control of my vision, my sound, my clothes.” I also embraced change along the way — things that make me a better woman, a better human being. Like, even the way I communicate: I’m really proud of my growth on that. I’m proud to walk into any building as this person. Nothing about me makes me embarrassed about me.”
On why she chose to have 40 distinct shades in the first run of Fenty Beauty: “In my own household, my father is half black, half white. My mom is black from South America. I was seeing diversity. That’s all I knew. Growing up, I wanted to be darker, always. So, making makeup, it wasn’t even a thing I had to think about. I didn’t even really know how bad it was, the void in the market for dark foundation, because all I’d seen was black women put makeup on. I don’t even think 40 shades is enough! And so I added 10 more recently, and we’re not gonna stop there.”
On going through her “thicc” journey: “It just changed how I dress in terms of my proportions. You wear what looks good on you and that’s it. I’m thick and curvy right now, and so if I can’t wear my own stuff then, I mean, that’s not gonna work, right? And my size is not the biggest size. It’s actually closer to the smallest size we have: We go up to a [French size] 46 (US 14). We’re saying we can meet you at any one drop that we put out.”
On what shoppers should pair with Fenty: “I don’t care what you pair it with. Whatever you want. You know, when I was younger, I couldn’t afford everything, but a pair of Timberlands: That was my Dior. And I had to save my money for a whole school year to get those Timberlands that I wanted, and I did it. Shoot, if your closet is full of Dior, go for it, put Fenty on with that. But you might have some Balenciaga sneakers and a Fashion Nova fit that my jacket is super lit with.”
On what the money she has made means to her: “The money means that I can take care of my family. The money means that I can facilitate the businesses that I want to. I can create jobs for other people. My money is not for me; it’s always the thought that I can help someone else or, in the future, for if I have kids. The world can really make you believe that the wrong things are priority, and it makes you really miss the core of life, what it means to be alive. It could literally be walking outside in the sun. That makes me happy. Like going to the grocery store — you know, there’s a cute little Jamaican market near where I live right now.”
Images: Kristin-Lee Moolman for T Magazine