October 20, 2020

Fans of Rihanna have been eagerly waiting for the singer to release her ninth album, but in the meantime, they can get a piece of her—yes, in the form of boxers and briefs. Released on October 2, Rihanna debuted a menswear collection with the help of Christian Combes (rapper Puff Diddy’s son) featuring boxer briefs, trunks and satin monogram print pyjamas in a wide range of sizes from S to XXXL. What caused the internet to blow up, (apart from RiRi’s star power) was a photo of Steven Green in a pair of XXL briefs on the Savage X Fenty website. Social media platforms were inundated with praises for Rihanna for subverting beauty standards and being size-inclusive. 

The international pop star isn’t shy of making bold statements to champion diversity in the beauty and fashion industry. Her makeup brand Fenty Beauty has an impressive range of 40 foundation shades, while her skincare line Fenty Skin is gender-inclusive and caters to men, women and non-binary people. What’s more, Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty line that started in 2018 offers affordable and inclusive lingerie that promotes confidence and fearlessness. And this philosophy applies no less to her first menswear line. 

The fashion industry still has a long way to go in terms of inclusivity. There are a few companies leading the charge such as Universal Standard, The Hour, Veronica Beard and Coyan that offer plus-size fashion but it is not enough. Even Green himself could not believe he was offered the job in the beginning, after years of being held to unrealistic body standards. “The message society sends to the plus-size community is ultimately to diminish your confidence until you are a decent size and then you can showcase yourself, and that’s not OK,” he said. 

Rihanna has recognised this stigma and isn’t afraid to address it head-on, which is probably why the collection was sold out in a matter of hours. In an industry that profits from people’s insecurities, sometimes swimming against the current can turn out to be a winning formula. 

Image Credit: SAVAGE x FENTY