By Gustavo Castillo, Sept. 21, 2021
Streaming on Prime Video Sept. 24, Rihanna is announcing her third Savage X Fenty collection the best way she knows how: by being the “Only Girl (In The World)” to make a runway come to life through over-the-top choreography, show stopping visuals and S&M.
Rihanna pushes boundaries that I have never seen anyone match. Although we are different genders, ethnicities and people, I find myself wanting to match her confidence and her entrepreneur moves that celebrate being different and comfortable in my skin; Robyn Rihanna Fenty; take a bow.
Loud, Unapologetic and Anti-culture, Rihanna is previewing her Savage X Fenty Vol. 3 as the upgraded version of her Vol. 1 mother. According to Forbes, it was announced this year that Rihanna has an estimated worth of $1.7 billion with $1.4 billion of her wealth coming from the success of Fenty Beauty and the rest coming from her Savage X Fenty line and career in music and film.
Although there has been some controversy regarding whether we should celebrate her acquired wealth through the lens of living in a failed capitalist society as well as her partnering with another billionaire Jeff Bezos in her Savage X Fenty release, I stand by Rihanna’s success as a businesswoman because she is empowering all communities by giving more than just makeup, clothes and music: she gives confidence.
I, myself, play with masculinity and femininity in my actions and clothes to reflect who I want to be that day. I constantly receive unwanted feedback from people who try to put me in a box and belittle me for not being what they want me to be.
It can be difficult to block out negative voices about myself and I start to believe them. But Rihanna calls me to be a part of her audience. An audience that has no gender and pays no attention toward the traditional cisgender standards.
I always count on her to make me sing at the top of my lungs that I’m the “Only Girl (In The World)” and that I should be treated with respect or I’m the first one out the door. For that, pour it up, girl.
She entered the beauty industry as an entertainer and a woman who meant business. In 2017, she released Fenty Beauty, which included 40 different skin tone shades embracing women of color and has since expanded by adding 10 more. I have seen the confidence she gives my POC friends and how proud they are to have melanin that can finally be acknowledged. Many POC people know that their skin is not just one skin tone but rather a mix of dark and light hues, and thus, mother provides.
Then, in 2019, her body positive lingerie line, Savage X Fenty, debuted and we have never been the same.
Her product is the first time in herstory where women, men, drag queens and trans and nonbinary folks participated in a hybrid mix of music, fashion and dance centered on celebrating diversity. This year Rihanna does it again by gathering a mix of unique individuals to redefine what sexy is and instead show how sexy feels.
Rihanna not only includes conventional models but acknowledges and celebrates models like Lauren Wasser, “The Girl with Golden Legs,” who has two prosthetic legs. Plus-size models, actors of color, athletes and singers are stated to participate in this event.
My most favorite and highly anticipated features of the show are Gottmik and The Symone. Being a part of the LGBTQ+ community, I find validation through queer representation essential in showing we are not afraid.
Gottmik is a trans man who participated alongside The Symone in RuPaul’s Drag Race season 13. The two queens preach power on the show and speak about the battles faced in the LGBTQ+ community including struggles with mental health and suicidal ideation.
Watching the show religiously, I vouch that my queens will effortlessly provide the energy and entertainment that matches Rihanna’s power.
The representation of these two drag queens mean the world to me because I get to see these men celebrate beauty through femininity and be praised by none other than Rihanna herself.
By hiring individuals and celebrating them as art, Rihanna creates a visual impact for generations to come.
She is hosting a big party that everyone is invited to, and girl, you better have her money.
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