This year’s highly-anticipated September magazine cover stars featured an array of Black women. However, the two most buzzed-about issues are the historic covers of British Vogue featuring Rihanna, and American Vogue featuring Beyoncé. Rihanna is the first Black woman to the cover British publication’s September issue in its 102-year history, for its first Black Editor in Chief, Edward Enniful.
Meanwhile, Beyoncé was allegedly awarded full creative control over her shoot for American Vogue, which happened to feature the first-ever Black photographer to shoot a cover for the publication (in its 126-year history). The two stunning covers fueled fan’s long-standing desire for a musical collaboration, but what the world really needs is a Fenty X Beyoncé collection. Now, before you all jump to remind us that Mrs. Carter is sworn to L’Oréal, I’m going to stop you right there. I am aware, but let me have this moment to fantasize about the possibilities. For many a Black woman, this one in particular, Bey and Rih represent the duality of Black feminine identity. Beyoncé is refined and poised; a devoted wife and mother who has earned her place in the world through a life of sacrifice and hard work. She is both ubiquitous and famously private while also taking risks, setting new standards as an activist and feminist. Rihanna is the embodiment of our carnal desires to shed the expectations of perfection and respectability that are imposed on Black women. She’s fun and unabashed about her life choices. Her public persona screams “I don’t give AF!” And her refusal to take on the title of role model early on in her career only added to her appeal, making Rihanna the uber talented, creative, brave bestie we all want, or aspire to be. Combining these two ideas, with the vision, intentionality, and attention to detail these two women both implement into their individual projects, blended with Fenty Beauty’s inclusivity would be a game-changer for the beauty world. The promos alone would literally break the Internet. Think, honeybee-themed packaging, tongue-and-cheek color names and vegan products inspired by Bey’s healthy lifestyle. And the ultimate setting spray. For the love of God, we want a Bey-worthy setting spray. For years, people and even some media have attempted to pit Rihanna and Beyoncé against each other, making comparisons about their relevance, success, and even their beauty. This is typical behavior when it comes to Black women in entertainment, further perpetuating the belief that there can only be one woman at the top (see Cardi vs. Nicki). Yet, both Rihanna and Beyoncé have continued to make historic strides in the music, beauty, and fashion worlds without ever encroaching on each other’s turf. Their ability to excel within the same space is a shining example that there is room for different identities of Black women at the table, and why I’m dying to see a beauty collaboration using both of their creative minds as champions of women. Between Rihanna’s beauty acumen and Beyoncé’s marketing genius, this union would give us a beauty collection that speaks the most diverse group of women and makeup enthusiasts. All I ask is that if this ever happens, can I get an invite to the launch party!