Speaking to Allure for the February cover story, the magazine’s first-ever male cover star discussed his childhood, his recent rise to fame, and his eventual journey to self-acceptance.
In the interview, Porter discussed fashion and masculinity. Porter, who wore an all-white outfit with a long, feathered train to the Golden Globes this week, said he’s always found fashion a form of self-expression.
“I always wanted to do something different. I always wanted to express myself in clothes differently. And I always had great taste. And expensive taste,” Porter recalled.
“When I was 10, I could walk into a store for my Easter suit and scan the suits, and it would inevitably be the most expensive suit in the store,” he said.
Porter’s other memorable looks include the tuxedo gown he wore to the 2019 Oscars and the gold catsuit and wings he sported at the 2019 Met Gala. Although many celebrate his gender-bending style now, Porter said he was “silenced” by societal constructs of masculinity for years.
But, according to Porter, the journey was far from easy – as it required moving past a belief instilled in him while he was still in kindergarten and learning the importance of authenticity.
“The hetero-normative construct that masculinity is better silenced me for many years,” the 50-year-old revealed. “It was like my masculinity was in question before I could even comprehend the thought.
“I was sent to a psychologist at five years old because I was a sissy and my family was afraid.”
Speaking to writer-editor Ashley C. Ford, Porter opened up about being a veritable fashion icon, coming into his power, and always staying true to himself, even if it meant losing work.
“Flamboyance was a silencing mechanism for a long time with me,” he told the magazine, reflecting on the early days of his career. “Flamboyant was code for ‘You’re a faggot, and we don’t want you.’ Flamboyant was a word that was used to marginalize me and pigeonhole me and keep me in a box. You get in the room, you give them flamboyant, and then they come back to you with, ‘He’s too flamboyant.’ And that’s when I started to want to murder people.”
Check out Porter’s Allure cover story on the magazine’s website.
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