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Vogue December 2020

Setting the standard for over 100 years has made Vogue the best selling fashion magazine in the world.

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United States
Conde Nast US
12 Issues

in this issue

2 min
center stage

IT’S NOT AS IF WE’VE NEVER HAD MEN on the cover of Vogue. They’ve simply played accompanying roles. Call them Vogue’s plus-ones: Richard Gere (with Cindy Crawford) in 1992, George Clooney (with Gisele) in 2000, Kanye (with Kim) in 2014, Justin (with Hailey) in 2019, to name a few. So Tyler Mitchell photographing the delightful Harry Styles going stag on our cover this month—in a dress, no less—is history in the making. But dwelling on history risks sounding old-fashioned—and do we care so much about gender rules anymore? Certainly the 26-year-old is unconcerned with barriers and boundaries of all kinds. In his life, in his wardrobe, and in his soaring career, he believes instead in the fundamentals of play. As a musician, Harry has moved effortlessly from the boy-pop of One…

2 min

Stefan Ruiz “I went to Washington, D.C., to photograph Dr. Anthony Fauci for Time magazine and I thought, Well, this is going to be the test for COVID-era photo shoots!” says Stefan Ruiz, who is, by now, fully versed in the art of socially distanced portraiture. More recently, he shot “The Next Chapter” (page 130) with the actress Rachel Zegler, the star on the rise in the postponed West Side Story remake from Steven Spielberg. Parts of the session were conducted en plein air—the rooftop photos are a reference to the musical’s famous “America” scene. “If you’d seen the film or if you knew the story, I wanted to have things that you could identify,” says the photographer, who also draws portraits at his Brooklyn studio, “but I didn’t want a…

10 min
what to expect

When my husband and I tell friends that I’m pregnant, their first question after “Congratulations” is almost always “Do you know what you want?” We like to respond that we won’t know the gender until our child is 18 and that they’ll let us know then. Everyone laughs at this. There is a truth to our line, though, one that hints at possibilities that are much more complex than whatever genitalia our child might be born with: the truth that we ultimately have no idea who—rather than what—is growing inside my belly. Who will this person be? What kind of person will we become parents to? How will they change our lives and who we are? This is a wondrous and terrifying concept, one that renders us both helpless and…

2 min
flying off the shelves

Looking for a bit of escapism from 2020? You’ll find roundtrip tickets to Neverland between the covers of two new releases—Kenneth: Shear Elegance (Schiffer Publishing), by Giuseppe Longo, and Vogue: Fantasy & Fashion (Abrams), both filled with lavish imagery and both an easy way to give a transporting gift this holiday season. Fantasy has always had a home at Vogue—and perhaps surprisingly, it’s often been tethered to current events, a jolt of uplift when darkness falls on the world. In 1944, Salvador Dalí created a dreamlike Surrealist tableau for the cover of the magazine in the midst of World War II; in the late part of the 20th century, slick sci-fi scenarios from Steven Klein transformed a new technological age into something even more sensational. As John Galliano notes in his…

6 min
twist & shout

I am in mourning for my life, Chekhov’s Masha tells her unlucky suitor in The Seagull when he asks why she always wears black. For me, it’s a bare mouth that is most telling of my mental state. Among the more dire losses in our era of public masking and working from home is one that, though minor, I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling: the intimate tie between a woman and her lipstick. I’m not a big makeup wearer, but color and my lips have been going steady for decades. To be honest, it was never an exclusively monogamous relationship. I cheated on my go-to reds with afternoon nudes and even an occasional, unsatisfying fling with fuchsia. Then COVID-19 struck. At home in New York City, we hunkered down and…

4 min
a night to remember

No matter what they throw at us—pandemics, fraught elections, economic travails—some things will remain the same: You’ll probably be enjoying your first hot chocolate of the season soon (even if you are sipping it at an outdoor table under a heat lamp), and come the holidays, you will want to dress up. It may seem silly and frivolous and maybe even a little brain-dead to put on party clothes at the end of a year like this, amid a tragedy of almost biblical proportions. But there is nothing to be ashamed of. Regardless of circumstances, the human penchant for adornment, the impulse to decorate ourselves, is as old as civilization itself. The quest for beauty, the need to rage against the machine, is perhaps never stronger than when we are…