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Quick, think of past Paper Magazine issues and tell us what comes to mind…
A great deal of nudity, highlighted by Kim Kardashian’s infamous 2014 spread, no?
Same here, don’t worry. You aren’t alone.
In the latest issue of this iconic publication, however, Christina Aguilera puts a unique twist on this naked theme:
She poses for a handful of extreme close-ups, all of which involve not a hint of makeup on her face.
Yes, that really is Christina Aguilera above and below, revealing almost more of herself in this manner that even Kim did three and a half years ago — or Nicki Minaj did when she got down and dirty in Paper.
How many times have you seen a celebrity’s butt or boobs?
It’s not all that rare, is it?
Okay, now consider: How many times have you seen a celebrity with no lipstick, mascara or eye shadow anywhere on her face?
It’s far less frequent, isn’t it?
Why did Aguilera take this bold step for Paper?
“I’ve always been someone that obviously loves to experiment, loves theatrics, loves to create a storyline and play a character in a video or through stage,” she explained to the magazine, adding:
“I’m a performer, that’s who I am by nature.
“But I’m at the place, even musically, where it’s a liberating feeling to be able to strip it all back and appreciate who you are and your raw beauty.”
Aguilera became known over the years for often changing up her appearance, going from a style that oozed sex appeal when she first struck it big to one that was a lot more retro in the 2010s.
“I can’t stay in a stagnant place for too long, which is why I think the position I was in with television just became very stifling,” she told Paper, referencing her six-season stint on The Voice.
“I need movement, I need to go explore, be an artist, create and transform.”
Unlike past Paper cover subjects, Christina isn’t nude and/or hugging a pig for her pictorial.
But that doesn’t mean the artist doesn’t see herself as an innovator.
“Be fearless in breaking new boundaries and don’t be afraid to go against the grain of criticism along the way,” she tells Paper.
Isn’t she afraid of what people are gonna say about her online?
“There’s always gonna be those trolls out there or people that have their own definition and ideals of beauty, but I think we’re progressing to a place of pushback and more people coming out.”
This is an impressive display of self-confidence on Aguilera’s part, both her photos themselves and her affiliated quotes.
The star just hope she pass along similar traits to her three-year old daughter.
“I don’t want to inject too much upon her as to how I’m choosing to live my life and what I’ve done in my career,” Aguilera says, concluding:
“I just hope I can allow what I’m doing to influence her to be her own person. That’s truly what I hope for her.
“I really want to make sure my children are both very confident in the sense that they know who they are and that they won’t be easily swayed by outside opinion.”
Kim Kardashian can’t catch a break, huh?
Well, that’s not exactly true — if you think about it, her entire life is like one great big break.
Plenty of other people have made a lame sex tape with their boyfriends that later got into the wrong hands, but have those people been able to turn that awful experience into millions and millions of dollars?
But while she’s super rich and famous and beautiful and so on and so forth, one thing that might not be all that fun about being Kim Kardashian is that she gets so. Much. Hate.
Just so very much hate, from so many people, on a regular basis.
Sometimes it’s deserved, and sometimes it’s not.
You just wait and see what you think about her latest move, OK?
Earlier this week, Kim announced that she’d be appearing on the cover of Vogue India, and the magazine also released the images of her two covers.
She looks great, which makes sense — that’s sort of what she does.
But people aren’t so much upset by the actual photos as they are by the fact that she’s on the cover of Vogue India at all.
“This is just disrespectful af to all the brown skinned Indian women who don’t get any exposure because @vogueindia is obsessed with white beauty standards,” one such person wrote on Instagram.
Over on Twitter, someone wrote “So I guess there was not Indian models/actors available for his cover. Where is the Indian representation in mainstream media? Has it only become relevant when white girls at coachella are rocking a bindi?”
How’s that for some real talk?
“So many pretty Indian models out there and Vogue India somehow chooses kendall jenner and kim kardashian for their covers,” another person commented. “How hard is it to have Indian women represent Indian culture?”
Oh, because in case you’d forgotten, this same exact thing happened not too long ago with Kendall Jenner — she was on the cover of Vogue India, too, and nobody was happy about that one either.
One particularly upset person wrote “WE HAVE PLENTY OF TALENTED BOLLYWOOD ACTRESSES THAT CAN BE ON THE COVER NO OFFENSE BUT KIM KARDASHIAN WAS NOT NEEDED THE OTHER COUNTRIES THAT PUT HER ON FAIR PLAY THEY DON’T HAVE A BIG FILM INDUSTRY BUT WE DO SO PLZ DON’T LET THIS HAPPEN AGAIN.”
Several people claimed that Kim Kardashian isn’t even famous in India — apparently there are many there who don’t even know who she is.
But while tons of social media users are just upset as can be over Kim’s cover, lots of others are totally cool with it.
“Dumb girls really putting so much energy into this #VogueIndia hate,” one of those people tweeted. “Kim can still purchase you, it’s not that deep, the magazine is getting all the attention it wants.”
“Focus on REAL representation issues. Thanks.”
Another popular argument is that Kim is Armenian, so it shouldn’t be too big of a deal.
It’s a complicated issue, to say the least.
Do you think Kim deserves to be on the cover of Vogue India?
Danielle Herrington has reached what many consider to be the pinnacle of the modeling business:
She has been named the 2018 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition cover girl.
And it’s pretty easy to see why…
Herrington is only the third African-American woman to grace the front of the legendary issue, something she touched on in a statement released shortly after the above photo went public.
“Two of my role models are Tyra Banks and Beyonce, so the fact that I get to join this incredible group of women as I become the third black model on the cover of SI Swimsuit is a dream come true,” Herrington says, adding:
“I am so excited to be part of this iconic brand that has long given identity and voice to women of all shapes, colors and beliefs.
“I hope that young girls who look at this cover are inspired to dream as big as I did and work hard to attain all their goals.”
Harrington posed for this issue for the very first time just a year ago.
She went from being a 2017 rookie to the star of the 2018 edition.
And she said previously that this was the path she always dreamed about, she just didn’t know if it was realistic.
In a 2017 interview with Fox News, Herrington talked about how she aspired to be just like Banks, who appears on probably the most iconic cover in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit history.
“I just remember Tyra Banks being on the cover and that’s where it all started for me,” Danielle said.
“That’s what really made me pursue modeling. SI was a goal from that point, from seeing Tyra on the cover. It was love at first sight… everything happened naturally.”
What else is worth noting about Danielle Herrington?
She’s 24 years old.
She grew up in Compton, California.
She majored in Psychology and would have been a child psychiatrist if she had not become a model.
Sports Illustrated is the first magazine she has EVER posed for.
“I am beyond speechless,” she wrote on Instagram after this cover was revealed.
“I dedicate this to all the young girls out there. Work hard, surround yourself with good people who believe in you and YOUR DREAMS WILL COME TRUE.”
For this cover shot, Herrington was shot by photographer Ben Watts in Harbour Island, Bahamas.
“Last year, Danielle was a rookie, and yet already an exemplary model,” said SI Swimsuit Editor MJ Day, gushing in more detail:
“She’s an extra hard worker and a natural brand ambassador. All those things separately don’t guarantee a cover, though. Danielle was a shy girl, who went from taking her first photos last year to showing up this year a completely different person.
“All the good things about her seemed to be magnified.
“She owned every single second of her shoot. She had an enthusiasm and effervescence about her – I felt like I was meeting her for the first time.
“Last year she showed up never expecting to be there; this year she showed up completely claiming her place and status as a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit model.”
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Nicki Minaj has failed to break the Internet.
The artist claimed this was her goal in posing VERY seductively for Paper Magazine.
But while the Internet may still be intact, it's also abuzz with chatter over Minaj's pictorial.
See what folks are saying about it below: