Fans everywhere were overjoyed when Vogue announced the one and only Harry Styles would be their December 2020 cover star. Donning an array of elegant Gucci ensembles, the former One Direction member was immediately praised by Stylers for turning yet another slick look and looking fabulous while doing it. Some conservative internet commentators were less than pleased with the cover, however, and Candace Owens' tweet criticizing Harry Styles for wearing a dress ruffled a lot of feathers.
Styles is known for his unique fashion sense, often blurring the lines between otherwise gendered articles of couture over the years during his solo performances and in photoshoots. Fans appreciate his style as a mark of norm-defying self-expression, but some less progressive critics aren't too happy with his latest spread for Vogue — which saw him don a Gucci, floor-length gown — including Candace Owens and Ben Shapiro.
"It is an outright attack," Owens quote tweeted Vogue's official account on Saturday, Nov. 14. "Bring back manly men." She seemed to indicate that Styles wearing a dress for the magazine not only represented some nebulous erosion of masculinity in the media at large, but also that Vogue was launching a deliberate "attack" on conservative ideals surrounding masculinity. While many just rolled their eyes and kept scrolling, Stylers were outraged with Owens' archaic and convoluted interpretation of the cover and made it well known to her in her replies. One fan simply replied to her with a tweet screenshot from fellow One Direction member Louis Tomlinson: "Educate yourself."
Owens' tweet is truly a stretch, and a rather toxic one at that. Styles has been wearing fluffy, avant-garde pieces for a long time now, but it seems she's just being introduced to the concept of unisex clothing. In her original tweet, she also attempted to draw out some larger conclusion from the Vogue cover, writing, "In the west, the steady feminization of our men at the same time that Marxism is being taught to our children is not a coincidence." I don't think Karl Marx could pull off Gucci this well, though.
Owens has yet to address the backlash over her tweets and did not respond to Elite Daily's request for additional comment.
Of course, Owens was backed up by other hyper-conservative pundits once a wave of backlash from Stylers started coming in. Ben Shapiro, who was infamously scandalized by Cardi B and Meghan Thee Stallion's "WAP" music video, was unsurprisingly outraged by Vogue's cover, jumping into the conversation on Monday, Nov. 16, with his own take.
"Anyone who pretends that it is not a referendum on masculinity for men to don floofy dresses is treating you as a full-on idiot," Shapiro tweeted. Yawn. Move on, dude. It's a piece of fabric.