Why Rihanna's 2014 CFDA Dress Was Important For The Trend Of Body Positivity On The Red Carpet
As the 2015 CFDA awards are fast approaching, I eagerly await not only the bestowing of awards, but the high-fashion ensembles that the attendees are sure to be sporting. What has me ready to salivate more than anything, though, is remembering Rihanna's 2014 CFDA awards dress by Adam Selman that wasn't just stunning, daring, and memorable, but also completely and utterly body-posi.
From the OTT to the "chic to death," the Council of Fashion Designers of America awards ceremony is always one of those occasions that celebs and fashionable babes wait for all year round in order to pull out their most haute couture gowns and otherwise fashionable ensembles. But RiRi's now-legendary dress was arguably one of the first to put body positivity straight onto the red carpet.
While strategic cutouts, plunging necklines, a bared midriff, and the shortest hemlines have always been staples of red carpets in general, the increase in body-posi gowns seems deliberate and different. I know that there are probably more than a few people who wonder what there isn't to be positive about when you're a celebrity with trainers, doctors, a glam squad, and dermatologists at your disposal. And furthermore, how body positive does a celebrity really need to be? Well, sure, being a privileged celeb does mean you have more resources at your disposal and more validation that you're gorgeous, but it also comes with more than a modicum of scrutiny every time you step out your house.
Having what Janice Ian would call a "technically good physique" also doesn't eliminate the other awful "ideals" that all humans are held to whether they're famous or not. Things like racism, shade-ism, transphobia, slut-shaming, sizeism, and other forms of appearance-based discrimination are all still garbage things that celebrities (and all people) have to deal with. This is why Rihanna's dress was not just capable of being body-posi, but actually was:
1. It "Freed The Nipple"
While we see topless men in the media all the time, women's breasts are still sexualized and censored. Rihanna basically forced publications to print photos showing her nipples. Amazing.
2. She Showed Her Braless Breasts
Who cares if her nipples are showing or her boobs don't look huge and unnaturally perky?
3. It Was Shapewear-Free
I'm not against using shapewear if it makes you more confident, but in this dress there's no mistaking that what you see is what you get. RiRi definitely woke up with this shape.
4. It Rih-vealed All Of Her Tattoos
It's sad and surprising, but true, that in this day and age some people still consider tattoos "trashy" or distasteful. Well, RiRi proved 'em wrong by showing off each and every single one swathed in couture.
5. It Hugged Every Curve
Not trying to "conceal" or "hide" anything, Rihanna flaunted what she has and put it all on display, sending the message that she is proud of every single inch of her body.
6. It Shone Bright Like A Diamond
Even if you wanted to or tried, you couldn't miss Rihanna in this dress due to its shimmer and shine. Instead of just quietly making a statement, she boldly made it nearly impossible for you to look away.
7. It Showed The Best Accessory Is Confidence
Baring it all to dozens of cameras and millions of people took a lot of guts, but Rihanna strode down that carpet like she owned it, and like it was nothin' — basically challenging you to think she looked anything but incredible.
Images: Getty(2); Paramout Pictures; Giphy(6)