With the release of ANTI behind her, Rihanna is in full swing on her world tour with The Weeknd, Travi$ Scott and Big Sean. Before the madness surrounding the album began in the public space, Rihanna linked up with Vogue for a photoshoot and subsequent cover story, which will land in the magazine’s April issue.
In the story, Rihanna discussed her personal life — trying to balance relationships with her schedule, taking a break from releasing music — Beyoncé, her clothing line with Puma, her album and much more.
Check out the cover, some snippets from the cover story and extra photos from the shoot below, and read the full story on Vogue‘s website. (P.S. You’re gonna want to save the one with her sitting in the bed. That’s peak beauty.)
On the sound of her album/”Consideration”:
Had Rihanna gotten bored with the pop formula? “Very much,” the singer says. “I just gravitated toward the songs that were honest to where I’m at right now.” From the first song, “Consideration,” a trip-hop collaboration with SZA, the message is clear. The chorus has Rihanna singing, “I got to do things my own way, darling.” It’s “like a PSA,” she tells me. She recognizes the risks: “It might not be some automatic record that will be Top 40. But I felt like I earned the right to do that now.”
On Beyoncé and the release of “Formation” around ANTI:
With the sudden release of “Formation” during Anti’s week of ascendance up the charts, it’s no wonder the Internet is pitting Beyoncé and Rihanna against each other. But that’s not how Rihanna thinks. “Here’s the deal,” she says. “They just get so excited to feast on something that’s negative. Something that’s competitive. Something that’s, you know, a rivalry. And that’s just not what I wake up to. Because I can only do me. And nobody else is going to be able to do that.”
I’m just digging the hell out of this bit:
In her quest for world domination, Rihanna will no doubt keep upending outdated norms. It’s not a coincidence that so many of her Puma designs are unisex. “I always wanted to do what my brothers were doing,” she says. “I always wanted to play the games they played and play rough and wear pants and go outside.” She still wants to. “Women feel empowered when they can do the things that are supposed to be only for men, you know?” she says. “It breaks boundaries, it’s liberating, and it’s empowering when you feel like, Well, I can do that, too.”