Zendaya’s Vogue Italia chartreuse-y cover & editorial: love it or hate it?

Zendaya is, to me, one of the most stylish women and one of the most photogenic women on the planet. But you wouldn’t know that from her Vogue Italia cover and editorial. I understand what Vogue Italia was trying to do – sort of a psychedelic Josephine Baker vibe – but I don’t think they pulled it off. At the end of the day, the magazine just surrounded a beautiful young woman in a pukey chartreuse color and photographed her with a really grainy lens. It’s bad. Thankfully, the interview is a bit better. Some highlights:

She’s trying to maintain a bit of anonymity and privacy: “Recently I’ve had more of a change happening in regards to reactions when I meet people or how people interact with me on a daily basis, because for so long I’ve been able to maintain a little bit of anonymity in a way where I could go off and do things and still live a pretty normal life. Of course it comes with new sets of challenges and pressures, but I’ve been doing this for a long time, and I started when I was quite young. So thankfully I’ve had a little bit of time to ease and grow my experience in a way that wasn’t just completely an overnight change. I’m always adjusting to it and trying to be grateful for it all in the end, because it means that people are clearly resonating with the work that I’m doing, and that means a lot to me.”

On her fans: “Many of them have grown with me and have watched me evolve in different parts of my life and career and with that, many of us being around the same age, have similar outlooks on life, similar thoughts or even just hopes and wishes for the future, whether it be for my career or the world. They’re really understanding that I’m human , even the hardcore ones and they want me to be happy and I genuinely feel that from them. They’re really respectful of my boundaries and the things that I choose to keep a little bit more private and keep for myself.”

Following in the footsteps of other iconic Black women:
“It’s a weird thing. It’s something you try to be aware and conscious of but also not think about, so that you don’t get too in your head. It can be scary and nerve-wracking because then there comes the pressure and you wanna do it the right way, because you want to make a lot of people proud. However, I feel incredibly grateful to be in this position because, without the women of the past, especially, iconic black women who have done what I’ve done before, I wouldn’t be able to exist in this space. So with every new accomplishment, with every new thing I learn, I hope that I can be a part of paying that forward and hopefully it’ll be easier for the next person.”

[From Vogue Italia]

These quotes have the vibe of Zendaya emailing her responses to the magazine, or worse yet, her publicist just issuing talking points. But I don’t doubt that this is the way Zendaya really feels. It also feels like she was trying to keep herself at arm’s length from Vogue Italia too. Considering that magazine’s history of problematic and racist editorials, I wouldn’t be surprised if Zendaya only accepted the magazine’s offer of a cover if she could bring in her own team (her stylist, Law Roach, was there during the shoot). I mean, Vogue Italia still f–ked it up, but this is a lot better than it would have been if the Italian team had full control.

Cover & IGs courtesy of Vogue Italia.

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10 Responses to “Zendaya’s Vogue Italia chartreuse-y cover & editorial: love it or hate it?”

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  1. TheOriginalMia says:

    Hate the photos. She’s a beautiful woman and they messed up these pictures with all that chartreuse and flare. Doing too damn much. The quotes are sorta standoffish, but I don’t blame her. Black women have to protect ourselves from the media and their narratives.

  2. lucy2 says:

    I don’t like the photos. She is so beautiful and stylish, she doesn’t need all the photoshopping and ridiculousness they are trying there.
    Even in quotes like this, I always get the sense that she has such a clear view of her life and her career, and knows how to handle all the pressures of it so well.

  3. Case says:

    I like the photos, I just wish they didn’t photoshop her face. Otherwise it’s pretty cool.

  4. Joey says:

    This is the first of this take I’ve seen on this editorial, which was released at the end of June? They’re beautiful, unique photos with a clear perspective. She looks stunning and the way she is able to move for the camera is amazing.

    As for the interview, I’m not sure how it’s always handled for an interview that is translated or for an international publication. I’ve always found her a bit guarded but genuine and smart.

  5. girl_ninja says:

    I kind of like what they were going for here. She’s such a pretty woman there was no need for as much photoshop as Vogue did. We do have to protect ourselves against so much as black women. It’s always good to see Zendaya.

  6. Trish says:

    Ooh I love the cover. It’s giving old school glamour. If I was her I’d hang that cover framed in my house lol.

  7. tigtig says:

    Zendaya always gives me Disney PR techniques, and I am amazed that she leans into it so much. It almost seems manufactured.

  8. Roo says:

    She is one of the most beautiful and stylish women in Hollywood . I like this shoot – it’s cool and fun – but they didn’t need to photoshop her in any way.

    Why, Vogue??

    • Why Vogue, why?? It’s such a disservice to Zendaya. They did her dirty…..Zendaya is almost unrecognizable, almost. But yes, I don’t like the very heavy handed photoshop on her.

  9. Paulkid says:

    While artistic, I don’t think the photos show Zendaya at her best, she is more stunning without excessive make up and effects. I do hope she is eating enough.