By Grace Copperthite
Harry Styles was the first man to appear on the cover of Vogue, and he did so in a billowy, elegant dress. His cover picture was not without controversy; many praised him for his daring choice to break down gender bias in fashion, and many criticized him for his “unmanly” appearance. However, Styles’ wardrobe choices showed that fashion is genderless and something to be enjoyed by everyone.
Candace Owens recently condemned Styles’ fashion on Twitter, calling on society to “bring back manly men,” explaining that “feminization of men” is an attack on western civilization as we know it.
However, Styles views fashion as genderless and a way to express himself; Fashion is not about destroying masculinity but rather embracing it in a new way. Styles’ dress makes him more of a man because he’s showing the world that fashion is for everyone, and if you want to wear a dress, men or women, and totally rock it- you absolutely should.
Styles’ mother, Anne Twist, explained in an interview with Lorraine Kelly that she used to play dress-up with Styles and his older sister Gemma, which could have driven his love for fashion.
“I was always a big fan of doing fancy dresses with them when they were smaller, which Gemma hated but Harry always embraced,” Twist said.
Styles’ love for fashion has always been apparent, from patterned button-ups during his One Direction years to the sheer lacy Gucci blouse he wore to the Met Gala last year. It is obvious that Styles loves to use fashion as a way to express himself and doesn’t see boundaries when creating outfits to fit his iconic style.
It’s because of his willingness to experiment with this fashion, that he has helped pave the way for men and women everywhere. It’s no longer about dressing masculine or feminine but rather what makes you feel beautiful, powerful, and uniquely you.
In his Vogue interview, Styles explained that he finds enjoyment in creating new looks, it’s part of who he is and what he loves to do.
“There’s so much joy to be had in playing with clothes. I’ve never thought too much about what it means—it just becomes this extended part of creating something,” Styles said.
His love for fashion is inspiring and will surely help others conquer their fears of gender boundaries and help people embrace fashion for what it is- just clothes.