Her refusal to let it all hang out is a major part of her attempt to "redefine what it means to be sexy and what it means to be a woman. Showing my skin is not what makes me sexy," she declares.
Yep, she's our cover girl!
Rocking a gorgeous Yves Saint Laurent blouse, Chanel vintage earrings, and her signature pompadour and bold red lip, Janelle Monáe fronts the May issue of ESSENCE magazine.
In her interview with contributing writer Lola Ogunnaike, the eclectic Monáe, whose new album Electric Lady is due this summer, discusses her unique style — and why, despite her enviable figure, she opts to keep her body under wraps.
"People don't ask Jay-Z to take his shirt off when he rhymes," she says defiantly. Her refusal to let it all hang out is a major part of her attempt to "redefine what it means to be sexy and what it means to be a woman. Showing my skin is not what makes me sexy," she declares. "I like skirts and dresses just like everyone else, but I had a message I needed to put out there. It was up to me to show people and young girls there was another way."
For our full interview with Janelle Monáe, in which she discusses her influences (Twilight Zone!), her evolving relationship with her father, and the minor run-in with the law that changed her life, pick up the May issue of ESSENCE (on newsstands April 5) — and check her out at this year's ESSENCE Festival in July.