It’s usually not what Amber Rose is wearing that gets the attention — there’s often not enough fabric to really focus on. Instead, horny Instagrammers and gossipy bloggers love to watch for what’s not there, the dips and cutouts of scant, barely there outfits, the thongs, low-cut necklines and short hemlines that have helped to make her famous.
| SEE MORE: TAKE A LOOK INSIDE AMBER'S STYLISH INNER CIRCLE |
This week Rose turned the tables on everyone and made her outfit the star of the show. Alongside Blac Chyna, she walked the red carpet at MTV’s VMAs in a one-piece catsuit that, while tight, was full coverage. And across all of the fabric was a mix of the words “slut,” “b***h,” “golddigger,” “stripper,” “h*e” and “whore.” These are words that Rose knows well, because the press and social media bullies have been calling her them for years. But now she has taken away a lot of their potential sting by literally wearing them, stretched and curved around the body that everyone likes to ogle.
The designer, a fellow Philly girl named Iris Barbee Bonner, says her clothes are “for the fearless.” And although Rose and Chyna’s outfits landed them on many Worst Dressed lists, it didn’t stop Rose from posting shots of herself in it all night on Instagram. No one who has decided to emblazon a neon yellow “Whore” across their waist in a spandex catsuit can spend a lot of time moaning about Best Dressed lists — they’re too busy being fearless statement makers and challenging everyone who has talked about them to say something now. On October 3, Rose will lead a Slutwalk through the streets of LA, a chance for women to, according to the event’s website, “join a movement against sexual injustice, victim blaming, derogatory labeling and gender inequality.” Her red carpet outfit was a visual preview of that event’s message, a declaration that instead of cowering under the hateful, sexist putdowns that are thrown at her, she is reclaiming the ugliest of the words and living how she wants to live, head — and other parts — held high. “They call us sluts and whores all the time, so we just embrace it," Rose said in an interview that night. "I have slut written across my vagina."
Around the same time Rose was squeezing herself into a catsuit, Janet Jackson was probably doing final fittings for the wardrobe for her new Unbreakable World Tour. And though we will all still call her Ms. Jackson when we’re nasty, she has most definitely moved on to tamer times. Jackson, who converted to Islam in 2013 after getting married, hit the stage of her opening show in baggy pants and a long sleeve top layered with a vest.
It was a radical departure from the booty shorts and bra tops of Jackson’s past. And, along with Rose’s VMA outfit, maybe this is the newest fashion trend, where women who once used clothes to show off their sexiest sexiness are instead using them to make very different — and very powerful — statements about how their strength and talent and identity doesn’t require displaying lots of flesh.
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