Rihanna’s Album Is Doing More Than Topping The Charts: It’s Empowering Confidence

“Confidence is the sexiest thing a woman can wear.”

“Confidence breeds beauty.”

“Confidence is the secret to all beauty.”

We see quotes like these semi regularly on social media, and although I disagree that the only reason to have confidence in yourself is to be more attractive, they really do have a point. Confidence helps you in every aspect of your life. Sadly, a lot of the time respect has to be demanded and working on my self confidence has definitely helped me to demand it. Listening to Rihanna’s  album, ANTI has got me thinking about confidence and the part it plays in sexuality.

Having confidence in myself and working on developing my sense of self worth has really helped me sexually. I would honestly say that I owe a certain amount of this to pop/R&B singers like Rihanna, Beyonce, and Nicki Minaj; being able to access the messages of women who preach such unabashed self love. I’m able to tell myself I am “Flawless.”

This is the reason that a lot of people will be more likely to approach sexual situations while they’re drunk, as it simulates confidence. This idea makes sense but is ultimately misguided. Alcohol also causes loss of inhibitions, which can lead to reckless and harmful decision making.

I’ve found that some people’s reaction to self confidence is to treat it as arrogance or cockiness. I agree that there is a line to be drawn, but I have never read Rihanna’s attitude as one of arrogance. All I can see is self love and self empowerment. Unfortunately, a lot of the time, if love isn’t coming from you then where is it coming from? Why should we have to rely on other people to validate us?

So, as Rihanna has helped me to channel my sexuality and self confidence, I wanted to share some of this in three sections.

SEXUAL CONFIDENCE:

“Sex With Me” is a bonus track from Rihanna’s new album, in which she speaks about sexual confidence and pleasure. This is something we’re still not quite used to. The idea of a woman owning her sexuality to this extent is still shocking to us. The knee jerk reaction might be to dismiss her saying she’s cocky. The idea of everyone enjoying and being open about enjoying sex is still taboo. This is why this song is so important. Why can’t we say sex with me is amazing? Why can’t we feel good about ourselves without being put down?

INDEPENDENCE:

While we know that we are at liberty to own our sexuality – it is wrong to assume that everything we do is sexual or romantic. It’s a shame that this assumption is made. As a woman it is still often assumed that you are just killing time until you can get married and start popping out babies. Here, Rihanna iterates something that is important for us all to remember— I am self sufficient. I am already complete.

BODY POSITIVITY:

Here, Rihanna defends the sheer crystal dress she wore to the CFDA Fashion Awards in 2015. It’s not expected that everyone should have this level of body confidence, but it’s something I think we should try to channel. I understand that it’s one thing to do this if you have a body that is widely socially accepted as ‘sexy’ as Rihanna’s is, but I definitely think it’s valuable for everyone to work on projecting this attitude no matter what body type you have.

Confidence inspires confidence, I am lucky to be surrounded in my life by beautiful, unapologetic, independent people who own their bodies and own their sexuality; however, if I didn’t listen to the message from Rihanna and women like her, then I would not be able to have the confidence that I do today.

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