Harry Styles covers the December issue of Vogue, the first man to cover Vogue solo. He’s generally promoting an album which should be coming out at some point – I take him at his word that he’s been working on new stuff, and that it will be out soon-ish, maybe. His 2019 album, Fine Line, was a big success financially and culturally. People really think that he’s the next great rock star or pop star. He has the love and acceptance of all the older rock legends too. Harry also seems to have grown into just a lovely guy who likes to play with fashion and he wants everyone to feel loved and respected. There’s a real gentleness around him, not because he’s fragile (he’s not), but because he’s just so positive and joyful. You can read the full Vogue piece here (it’s pretty long) and here are some highlights:
He loves author Alain de Botton. “I love his writing. I just think he’s brilliant. I saw him give a talk about the keys to happiness, and how one of the keys is living among friends, and how real friendship stems from being vulnerable with someone.” De Botton’s 2016 novel The Course of Love taught Styles that “when it comes to relationships, you just expect yourself to be good at it…[but] being in a real relationship with someone is a skill.”
He meditates & practices Pilates: “I’ve got very tight hamstrings—trying to get those open” and meditates twice a day. “It has changed my life but it’s so subtle. It’s helped me just be more present. I feel like I’m able to enjoy the things that are happening right in front of me, even if it’s food or it’s coffee or it’s being with a friend—or a swim in a really cold pond! Meditation just brings a stillness that has been really beneficial, I think, for my mental health.”
Lockdown for months in LA: After a few days on his own, however, he moved in with a pod of three friends. They “would put names in a hat and plan the week out. If you were Monday, you would choose the movie, dinner, and the activity for that day. I like to make soups, and there was a big array of movies; we went all over the board,” from Goodfellas to Clueless. The experience, says Styles, “has been a really good lesson in what makes me happy now. It’s such a good example of living in the moment. I honestly just like being around my friends. That’s been my biggest takeaway. Just being on my own the whole time, I would have been miserable.”
On BLM & social change: “I think it’s a time for opening up and learning and listening. I’ve been trying to read and educate myself so that in 20 years I’m still doing the right things and taking the right steps. I believe in karma, and I think it’s just a time right now where we could use a little more kindness and empathy and patience with people, be a little more prepared to listen and grow.”
He drives a Primrose Yellow ’73 Jaguar. “Me and my dad have always bonded over cars. I never thought I’d be someone who just went out for a leisurely drive, purely for enjoyment.”
His love of fashion: “You can never be overdressed. There’s no such thing. 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. As a kid it was completely mind-blowing. Now I’ll put on something that feels really flamboyant, and I don’t feel crazy wearing it. I think if you get something that you feel amazing in, it’s like a superhero outfit. Clothes are there to have fun with and experiment with and play with. What’s really exciting is that all of these lines are just kind of crumbling away. When you take away ‘There’s clothes for men and there’s clothes for women,’ once you remove any barriers, obviously you open up the arena in which you can play. I’ll go in shops sometimes, and I just find myself looking at the women’s clothes thinking they’re amazing. 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. I’ve never really thought too much about what it means—it just becomes this extended part of creating something.”
I love what he says about looking at amazing women’s clothing, and if you go to the Vogue editorial, you can see that the magazine had so much fun dressing him up in dresses, skirts, pretty blouses, bold menswear looks and everything else. And all of it works on him. In Dunkirk, he also showed that he has a perfect look for period clothes too – you can easily put him in WWII gear, and I would imagine he would look perfectly at home in Edwardian or Victorian gear too. Now, that being said, there’s a nagging part of me that wants to point out that of course he looks good in high-style women’s fashion – he has the body type for women’s clothes. Haute couture is made for thin women with narrow hips and small breasts, i.e. men built like Harry Styles.
Dressing up, making music, living in the moment: This is what matters to @harry_styles. Boundaries and labels? Not so much. Read the full December cover story: https://t.co/XpEzTsnQY9 pic.twitter.com/sbVeXgtZee
— Vogue Magazine (@voguemagazine) November 13, 2020
Photos and cover courtesy of Vogue, additional pics courtesy of Avalon Red.