Celebrating 10 Years of Rihanna: A Look Back Over Her Career
On August 30th, 2005, a little known Barbadian singer named Rihanna released her debut album Music of the Sun. The album spawned fun pop hits like “Pon De Replay,” and put the young foreign starlet on the map. But who knew that the Island girl would become a megaforce in the industry? Now, Rihanna is known internationally for her iconic style, artistry, bold persona, and numerous accolades that officially span a 10-year career.
While speaking at the launch of her latest release of her fragrance “Riri by Rihanna,” the star acknowledged her 10th anniversary, letting us know that we might be in for a surprise: “There are a few things I have in mind, so you’ll have to wait on that, but don’t think I’m forgetting because this means a lot to me that I made it to 10 years.”
To commemorate this milestone for one of the most celebrated and controversial pop stars ever, here are the 10 best Rihanna moments over her 10-year career.
1. First no.1 single with ‘SOS’
The beginning of Rihanna’s success started with her first U.S. No.1 single, “S.O.S.” The 2006 song, which samples Soft Cell’s Tainted Love, sparked the start of Rihanna’s triumphant chart history, which now spans at 13 No.1 singles, beating Madonna’s record and currently tied with Michael Jackson’s.
2. Vogue Covergirl
Rihanna’s model-esque features have landed her on the cover of numerous magazines from Elle to GQ, and fashion campaigns from Armani to Balmain. But a pivotal moment for both Rihanna and the fashion industry was her debut American Vogue cover in 2011. Since her Vogue initiation, Rihanna has covered British and Brazilian Vogue, and continues to cement her status as one of music’s most fashionable pop stars.
3. Good Girl Gone Bad
2007 was a big year for Rihanna. She released the monster-smash single “Umbrella,” which catapulted her into a new stratosphere of fame and success. From the release of Good Girl Gone Bad, Rihanna released hit after hit, from “Shut Up and Drive” and “Please Don’t Stop The Music,” to embarking on her first headlining worldwide tour.
4. American Music Icon Award
In 2013, Rihanna was awarded the Icon award at the American Music Awards. This accolade particularly stands out as it is the first Icon award Rihanna has received — the first of what will soon be many.
5. That CFDA Awards dress
Rihanna’s iconic style moments are endless. To pick just one is quite difficult. However, in June 2014, Rihanna managed to shock us all in a glittery sheer ensemble, designed by Adam Selman. The look, which was inspired by Josephine Baker, made headlines and spawned thousands of comments with divided opinions. While some thought it was fashion forward, risqué, and her best look to date, some considered it tacky and inappropriate. The amazing thing about this look is Rihanna’s power to provoke discussion merely through the clothes she wears. Her looks are debated, but they always stand out and make you wonder.
FourFiveSeconds was the first song released from Rihanna’s soon-to-be-released album, and features a killer collaboration between Rihanna, Kanye West and Paul McCartney. Such a collaboration from three diverse artists from three different genres is pretty damn rare, and for Rihanna to work with — in her words “ a f*cking Beatle” — is definitely a great accomplishment for the singer.
7. The beginning of Bad Gal Riri
When you think of Instagram, BadGalRiRi has to be one of them! Her photos make headlines often for images of her smoking weed, or wearing next to nothing, but it really is a great way for Rihanna to connect with her fan base and showcase her sense of humor. After all, her current profile pic is a stick-figure drawing of her, and she often posts hilarious memes and clips showcasing that playful side that we all love. From the beautifully curated photos, to the shady humor, Rihanna’s Instagram is definitely one of a kind.
8. Rihanna loves Dior and Dior loves Rihanna
Rihanna made history as the first black woman to be the face of Dior, and boy, did she live up to it! The beautiful campaign and short video were shot in Versailles, and presents Rihanna at her most glamorous, while showing us just how captivating and perfect she is as the Dior woman.
9. Rihanna the mogul
From her latest collaboration with Puma and MAC Cosmetics, to the release of perfumes including Rogue and Riri, Rihanna has been growing her brand with endorsements that perfectly suit the singer’s diverse and eclectic style.
The “Bitch Better Have My Money” video is undoubtedly Rihanna’s most visually creative and controversial videos to date. The Tarantino style-esque clip features lots of blood and nudity, while Rihanna and her girl gang ride around in the coolest clothes with a Louis Vuitton trunk full of cash. This video definitely stands out from all the rest, and is the perfect way to mark her 10th year in this industry as a force to be reckoned with.