rihanna at fenty beauty event

Rihanna gives us a masterclass in risk-taking maternity style – and it’s truly liberating

Rihanna is known for taking fashion risks and setting trends – and the mogul is continuing to do so while pregnant, showing why it’s important to retain your own sense of style and not conform even when people may expect you to.

I was scrolling through Twitter last month when I saw that image of Rihanna. You know, the one of her walking through the throng of paparazzi and fans as she appeared at Dior’s autumn/winter 2022 show dressed in a black lace babydoll dress, a leather trench draped perfectly around her arms, knee-high black boots and heavy silver jewellery.

The many photos and videos that documented her appearance at Paris Fashion Week were shared in their thousands across social media feeds – in typical Rihanna fashion, anything she wears is a topic of discussion, a piece of social commentary and a catalyst for both debate and criticism.

Rihanna attends the Dior Womenswear Fall/Winter 2022/2023
: Rihanna attends the Dior Womenswear Fall/Winter 2022/2023

A heavily pregnant RiRi has been travelling around the world in belly-baring looks that embody everything we love about Rihanna – from her badass attitude to her one-of-a-kind sense of style – and seeing this so clearly displayed while pregnant has been a source of inspiration among fans as she remains true to her style and identity without conforming to what people would expect her (and pregnant women in general) to wear.

Gone are the flowing dresses, florals and pastel hues that people might expect from typical springtime maternity style; instead, enter Rihanna’s array of belly-baring crop tops, figure-hugging mini dresses and a collection of lace-up stilettos that even have me feeling envious.

Rihanna at the Gucci fashion show in Milan
Rihanna at the Gucci show during Milan Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2022/23 on February 25, 2022 in Milan, Italy
Rihanna leaving the Off White show in Paris
Rihanna leaving the Off-White Womenswear Fall/Winter 2022/2023 show as part of Paris Fashion Week on February 28, 2022 in Paris, France.

What Rihanna is showing us is that her sense of style is not taking a backseat to her bump, and it’s liberating to see.

A woman with an iconic and very specific sense of style, it’s brilliant to see her retain that and not feel the need to switch that up for looks that are deemed more “appropriate” or “motherly”.

It’s great to see her wear outfits that not only push boundaries – as Rihanna has always done – but simply are fun and reflect the joy and happiness that she is so clearly experiencing.

Whether it’s The Attico two-piece she wore to her Fenty Beauty Universe event last month or walking through a car park in LA in a cut-out black crop top that displays her burgeoning belly, Rihanna isn’t shying away from anyone nor is she conforming to what society would expect her to wear and look like as a soon-to-be mother – she’s even shared that “it’s fun” but also “a challenge” to play with fashion while pregnant.

Rihanna is the ultimate trendsetter – always has been and always will be. And I think it sends an important message about retaining your own sense of identity both during and after pregnancy. It can be easy to lose parts of yourself when you become so consumed by the new role you’re about to take on and the life you’re creating. But being defiant with your personal style can be a quick way to remind yourself of who you are – and in a way, that is the power of clothes and personal style. It speaks to your own character and communicates a message to those around you – and Rihanna is doing just that.

This next chapter of Rihanna’s life is about to bring new things – but the style icon, risktaker and trendsetter that we know and love her to be will always remain and that has never been clearer.

Sign up for the latest news and must-read features from Stylist, so you don't miss out on the conversation.

By entering my email I agree to Stylist’s Privacy Policy

Images: Getty


Share this article

Recommended by Leah Sinclair


Rihanna’s clap-back at pimple-fetishists heralds a new era of skin positivity

Her response is the perfect reminder to not let anyone steal your shine.

Posted by
Jessica Rapana

Rihanna fans “feel seen” thanks to Fenty’s mould-breaking mannequins

They’re being hailed as “curvy” and “realistic”.

Posted by
Hollie Richardson
Fashion Week

Rihanna wore a dress over jeans and now we want to wear a dress over jeans

This is Noughties nostalgia as its finest and we want a slice of the action

Posted by
Billie Bhatia

Rihanna is down to collaborate with Lizzo, and the internet is totally freaking out

A match made in heaven, if you ask us.

Posted by
Christobel Hastings