- Harry Styles made history as the first male to cover Vogue solo.
- For the magazine's December issue, the singer wore dresses and skirts for the photoshoot, which sparked a variety of reactions from both fans and critics.
- Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is the latest figure to defend Styles' Vogue cover after the star and magazine were met with mixed reactions.
- In an Instagram story, Ocasio-Cortez pushed back on critics of Styles' cover shoot, saying: "What's the point of creating things if they don't make people think? Or feel or reflect? Especially as an artist or creative? Who wants to see the same thing all the time?"
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Democratic Rep. Alexandria-Ocasio Cortez of New York is the latest prominent figure to defend Harry Styles after he made history as the first solo male cover star of Vogue and sparked conversation by wearing dresses and skirts in the magazine's feature, photographed by Tyler Mitchell.
Ocasio-Cortez has become somewhat of a style trendsetter herself, showing her constituents and fans on social media inside her trendy "Bushwick Birkin" Telfar tote bag, speaking up about thrift shopping and renting her clothes, and giving a makeup tutorial for Vogue's "Beauty Secrets" series on YouTube.
So when Ocasio-Cortez hosted an Instagram story Q&A session on Saturday night, a user asked her thoughts on Styles' Vogue cover, where he wore a lace-trimmed Gucci dress.
"It looks wonderful," Ocasio-Cortez wrote in an Instagram story post. "The masculine and feminine elements are balanced beautifully — the hair and jacket styling give me James Dean vibes too."
She also said Styles' Vogue cover and feature could be an opportunity for people to examine their thoughts on gender norms.
"Perhaps for some people, it provokes some anger or insecurity around masculinity/femininity/etc.," the lawmaker wrote. "If it does, then maybe that's part of the point. Sit with that reaction and think about it, examine it, explore it, engage it, and grow with it."
"What's the point of creating things if they don't make people think? Or feel or reflect? Especially as an artist or creative? Who wants to see the same thing all the time? And never explore their assumptions?" Ocasio-Cortez added.
Many fans of Styles praised him on social media for the clothes he wore as part of the feature — but the musician's barrier-breaking fashion choices weren't met with enthusiasm by everyone
Styles' recent Vogue cover sparked mixed reactions. While many fans expressed excitement at the star's openness about his fashion sense, the magazine's feature on Styles also led to backlash.
The former One Director member's feature was met with criticism from members of the LGBTQ community, who pointed out a double-standard: While Styles receives praise for wearing a dress and skirts in the fashion magazine, transgender women are attacked for making similar fashion choices.
Following the release of the magazine cover, conservative commentator Candace Owens called Styles' Vogue feature an "outright attack" on "manly men."
Like Ocasio-Cortez, other prominent voices on social media, including Jameela Jamil, Olivia Wilde, and Zach Braff, stepped in to defend Styles.
"Harry Styles is plenty manly, because manly is whatever you want it to be," Jamil tweeted.
Actor Zach Braff tweeted: "Our whole lives boys and men are told we need to be manly. Life is short. Be whatever the f— you want to be."
Styles' mom, Anne Twist, also shared her support for her son in a British talk show interview on Tuesday, saying "It doesn't matter however you want to express yourself."
In his Vogue feature story, Styles told Vogue's Hamish Bowles about his fluid sense of style.
"I'll go in shops sometimes, and I just find myself looking at the women's clothes thinking they're amazing," Styles said. "It's like anything — anytime you're putting barriers up in your own life, you're just limiting yourself. There's so much joy to be had in playing with clothes."
He also spoke about musicians who doubled as pop culture and style icons — who he admired when he was growing up.
"The people that I looked up to in music — Prince and David Bowie and Elvis and Freddie Mercury and Elton John — they're such showmen," Styles said. "As a kid it was completely mind-blowing."
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