Harry Styles on the Cover of Vogue


Tyler Mitchell

This is the cover image for the December 2020 issue of Vogue.

Brianne Leber, Chief Editor

Vogue just had their first ever male cover star and guess what! It’s our man, Harry Styles.

Before we get into this, I want to encourage everyone to read the Vogue cover story. The original work is absolutely wonderful and includes more beautiful photos of Styles and even quotes.   Click here to read!

There have been mixed responses to the Vogue December 2020 issue cover.

Many people are happy to see a man on the cover of Vogue, especially because he is wearing traditionally feminine clothing. Recently, there has been a huge push over social media for challenging gender norms in fashion.

The rise of femboys, maid boys, cat boys, and men is skirts, has been taking TikTok by storm and has bled out into different social medias. Fashion influencers have been making videos for people of all genders and are working hard to teach people new ways to step outside of their comfort zone.

My personal wardrobe is fairly androgynous. I get looks when I’m shopping in the “men’s” section but with this new fashion movement, hopefully one day there won’t be clothing sections based on gender at all. Harry Styles and Vogue creating this cover, is a step closer to a more inclusive and diverse fashion experience.

There are people on the other hand who do not support Harry Styles or the December 2020 Vogue cover. Many conservative public influencers have spoken out against Styles.

Candace Owens in particular has been very active in condemning Styles. Her first tweet reads as follows: “There is no society that can survive without strong men. The East knows this. In the west, the steady feminization of our men at the same time that Marxism is being taught to our children is not a coincidence. It is an outright attack. Bring back manly men.”

After this tweet, there was an influx of support for Harry Styles that included popular influencers, fans, and well know public figures posting their own photos in dresses, images of past celebrities in androgynous clothing, and counter points for the tweet.

She responded again by says, “Newsflash woke idiots: when you send me pictures of Freddie Mercury and Kurt Cobain dressed as women to prove your point, you are actually proving mine. Stable men do not wear ball gowns. The end.”

Since then, the controversy has only grown as more and more people share their opinions.

Photo of Styles taken from Vogue and my personal favorite (Tyler Mitchell)

One particular outlook that I think needs to be shared is from people who support Harry Styles but also believe that he is not the revolutionary the media is making him out to be.

People of color and queer people have been breaking gender norms in fashion for decades and are not being given the credit they deserve. Miss J Alexander, Prince, Jaden Smith, and Billy Porter are a few men of color who challenge gender norms. Many people who share this opinion believe that Styles is doing wonderful things, but we shouldn’t overlook the contributions created by other fashion influencers.

Emily Papadakis-Van Doren, ERHS student, told me she “really likes how Harry is a public figure who is breaking the gender norm. One of the most influential magazines has this man breaking stereotypes and letting himself be vulnerable.”

When I explained the controversy surrounding the cover, Emily said, “I think those people [people who are against Styles] are to afraid to let themselves be vulnerable like Harry is and they are trying to keep this idea of  manly men by pushing it on people like Harry. They are afraid of change.”

Maddie Casto, a long time Harry Styles fan, says Styles “is an angel, and it is super cool that he is comfortable enough with himself to wear a dress. He is doing what he wants to do.”

When I brought up the criticism of Styles and Vogue magazine, she jumped to explain how she feels, “Vogue has always been for fashion and they didn’t choose Styles to attack masculinity. It is because of his fashion choices. People shouldn’t limit what he should be able to wear.”

Overall, Harry Styles on the cover of Vogue has made a major splash in the world of fashion. What do you think?