Rihanna Accused of Cultural Braids Appropriation at SavageXFenty Show

  • Vol. 3 of Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty fashion show was released on Amazon on Friday.
  • Several high profile figures took part, including Emily Ratajkowski and Vanessa Hudgens.
  • The show received backlash for “cultural appropriation” as some of the white models wore braids.

Vol. 3 of Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty fashion show, released on Amazon on Friday, has been slammed for “cultural appropriation” by people who were upset by seeing white models wearing braids.

The show was incredibly diverse, but some viewers criticized the fact white models, including Emily Ratajkowski, had their hair in braids, which are traditionally worn by Black women.

Ratajkowski walked down the catwalk to “Lemon” by N.E.R.D featuring Rihanna. One TikTok user called Dee who runs the worst.western420 account, which has 1.9 million followers, took issue with the fact Ratajkowski appeared while the line “Mad ethnic right now” played. The TikTok has been watched 1.4 million times and received 235,000 likes.

Many expressed their opinions on social media, tweeting that white women wearing their hair this way constitute cultural appropriation.

“I wish I could write something as funny as Rihanna putting all these white girls in braids for the fenty show,” tweeted comedy writer Raina Morris.

However, others showed appreciation that there were so many women wearing braids and celebrating the hairstyle.

Otherwise, the premiere was a huge success, with many famous guests attending, including supermodel Gigi Hadid, TikToker Bella Poarch, and “Drag Race” star Gottmik.

Savage X Fenty show

Some of the models on the Savage X Fenty runway.


Kevin Mazur/Getty Images



A previous Savage X Fenty show in October 2020 was accused of cultural appropriation for including a song that offended some Muslim people. Coucou Chloe’s “Doom” played during a performance, containing samples from Hadith — a type of Islamic scripture.

Rihanna was called out on social media by people of the Muslim faith, saying it was “disrespectful” and “a mockery” to their religion.

Rihanna apologized, admitting it was a “huge oversight that was unintentionally offensive.”

“I would, more importantly, like to apologize for this honest yet careless mistake. We understand that we hurt many of our Muslim brothers and sisters, and I’m incredibly disheartened by this,” she wrote on Instagram.

Rihanna has not yet responded to the latest criticism. Insider has reached out to representatives of Rihanna for comment.

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