Rihanna Takes On the Sheer Trend in a See-Through Skirt and Blazer

She knows exactly how to elevate the textural look.

Rihanna in New York City wearing a black leather blazer and a diamond necklace
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Sometimes, the fashion week runways agree on an emerging trend that feels impossible to wear in real life, even to a fashion editor. When collection after collection started incorporating completely sheer fabrics on their spring 2024 runways, I wasn't sure they'd have much of an application away from the catwalk. But on Thursday, May 16, Rihanna showed why I should overcome any hesitation toward see-through fabrics.

Rihanna dressed up for an NYU graduation dinner at the Italian restaurant Mamo (her brother is reportedly graduating this spring) with the goal of being almost completely transparent. The sheer element came through her see-through black skirt (or slip dress—credits confirming the garment's shape haven't been released yet) with contrasting satin fabric gathered at the hem. Over the top, she pulled on a black leather blazer and square-frame sunglasses. A$AP Rocky held her hand, and her black Lady Dior bag, while wearing a powder blue suit.

Rihanna and A$AP Rocky walk together in New York city wearing contrasting outfits

Rihanna and A$AP Rocky dressed up for an NYU graduation dinner on Thursday, May 16.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

Rihanna completed her outfit with semi-sheer tights, a diamond tennis necklace, and diamond earrings. It was a business on top, party down below look: Her blazer and jewelry felt fit for a beauty billionaire, while her see-through skirt brought the going-out energy.

While exact credits for Rihanna's outfit haven't been shared just yet, it's safe to assume that either a straight-off-the-runway piece or a vintage pull plays into her look. The Fenty mogul is an expert at engineering outfits with an element of fashion history, whether she's referencing a 1990s John Galliano collection or she's trying a head-to-toe moment from a recent Paris Fashion Week collection. Oftentimes, those looks come together with the help of stylist Jahleel Weaver.

Rihanna wearing a sheer skirt and black blazer

Rihanna's look for the night featured a black leather blazer, layered over a completely sheer skirt, black sheer tights, and pointed-toe heels.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

After skipping the 2024 Met Gala, Rihanna has turned the New York City sidewalks into her playground for experimental and vintage outfits. Over Mother's Day weekend, the singer combined viral pieces like Alaïa's sold-out crystal ballet flats and Gucci's East-West horsebit bag with archival outfits from the likes of Comme des Garçons. She's also showed off a range of luxury handbags to rival Jennifer Lopez's Birkins, including yesterday's quilted Lady Dior bag and a jumbo Chanel flap bag.

Rihanna's May 16 look goes down in her recent personal style history as the first to lean into peek-a-boo styling. It was enough to sell sheer skeptics like me on the look, so long as there's a contrasting layer on top.

Shop Rihanna's Semi-Sheer Outfit

Halie LeSavage
Senior News Editor (Fashion & Beauty)

Halie LeSavage is the senior fashion and beauty news editor at Marie Claire, where she assigns, edits, and writes stories for both sections. Halie is an expert on runway trends, celebrity style, emerging fashion and beauty brands, and shopping (naturally). In over seven years as a professional journalist, Halie’s reporting has ranged from fashion week coverage spanning the Copenhagen, New York, Milan, and Paris markets, to profiles on industry insiders including stylist Alison Bornstein and J.Crew womenswear creative director Olympia Gayot, to breaking news stories on noteworthy brand collaborations and beauty launches. (She can personally confirm that Bella Hadid’s Ôrebella perfume is worth the hype.) She has also written dozens of research-backed shopping guides to finding the best tote bags, ballet flats, and more. Most of all, Halie loves to explore what trends—like the rise of doll-like Mary Janes or TikTok’s 75 Hard Style Challenge—can say about culture writ large. (She justifies almost any purchase by saying it’s “for work.”) Halie has previously held writer and editor roles at Glamour, Morning Brew, and Harper’s Bazaar. Halie has been cited as a fashion and beauty expert in The Cut, CNN Underscored, and Reuters, among other outlets, and appears in newsletters like Selleb and Self-Checkout to provide shopping recommendations. In 2022, she was awarded the Hearst Spotlight Award for excellence and innovation in fashion journalism. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in English from Harvard College. Outside of work, Halie is passionate about books, baking, and her miniature Bernedoodle, Dolly. For a behind-the-scenes look at her reporting, you can follow Halie on Instagram and TikTok.