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An Interview with Rihanna: The Best Thing About Being A Woman

An Interview with Rihanna: The Best Thing About Being A Woman

By Alexandria Gouveia

Ever since she sashayed onto the music scene at just 17 years old, Rihanna’s rebellious attitude saw her break barriers and set new rules—a precedent that saw her come to dominate an industry in flux and, a little further down the line, make an empowering land grab in the worlds of fashion and beauty thanks to her Fenty empire.

This is a true rags-to-riches underdog tale. The Barbadian’s Saint Michael beginnings were humble. "It wasn't the poorest, and it definitely wasn't the richest," she says of her hometown. And her life was far from idyllic: her dad was an addict that beat her mom. Later on Rihanna—real name, Robyn Rihanna Fenty—too became a victim of domestic violence at the hands of former partner, singer Chris Brown. 

Yet, in spite of her hardships, or even maybe fueled by them, Rihanna continued to persevere, rising higher after each setback, fulfilling every bold ambition and breaking some records along the way. Did you know the Grammy award-winning artist was the first person of color to be the face of Dior? She also made history in 2019, becoming the first woman of color to lead a luxury fashion house  in partnership with LVMH Moët Hennessy. As well as celebrating ongoing success with her Fenty Beauty empire, Rihanna’s lingerie line Savage x Fenty, which “celebrates fearlessness, confidence and inclusivity” has also proven a huge success in the post #MeToo era, throwing shade on a dated Victoria’s Secret template. 

Despite the five-year hiatus to focus on business endeavors, the music hasn’t stopped either, with the musician teasing fans of a reggae-inspired ninth album–R9, citing music as an important outlet during these harder times. 

After nearly two decades spent tirelessly in the spotlight Rihanna, now 34, continues to inspire. A true fierce icon and a champion of women, with diversity and inclusivity always at the forefront. Here, the star talks about the importance of self-care, mental health, relationships and the joys of being a woman.

What are your views on the importance of feminine health?

Of course, it’s important. In the same way I take personal days off for my mental health, I always make sure my body is well looked after. There is no reason why we shouldn’t look after all parts of our body–there should be no embarrassment. 

When it comes to your relationship with your body, what do you feel is key?

Accepting who you are. That was why I created my Fenty ranges. They are for women of all shades, cultures and sizes–so we can all feel accepted.  

What does self-care mean to you?

Self-care is looking after our minds as well as our bodies. I have sensitive skin so I avoid products that have alcohol or chemicals in them. They just don’t work for my body.

If you have a low self-esteem day, how do you pick yourself back up?

Like I said, I will take a personal day just for me if I think things are getting too much. It might just be watching a movie or binging a Netflix series, but just switching off from the world for a day can really help. 

Do you feel women still carry shame when it comes to their own pleasure? 

To me sex is power. It’s empowering when you do it because you want to do it.

What advice would you give your 16-year-old self?

The minute you learn to love yourself, you won’t want to be anybody else! 

What does it take to free yourself from other people’s judgements?

It can take time to figure out who you are and how to be happy with what you have, but once you learn to love yourself that will be the biggest victory you can ever have. The minute you learn to be comfortable with who you are then everything changes–you start living life for you, and not worrying about what everybody else thinks. 

The best thing about being a woman is…

Strength. Women are the strongest people on earth and we all have that power in us—it’s about recognizing it. It’s about accepting yourself for who you are and then doing what makes you, and the people you love in your life, happy. When you start ignoring the opinions of those people who don’t matter you will start to feel so empowered.

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