Singer and Beauty Guru Now Official Billionaire

Rihanna joined the entertainment industry in 2005, debuting with her first single “Pon De Replay.” From there she has become an icon, despite her most recent single in 2020 coming after a three-year absence from the music business.

Her icon status has remained intact outside of the music world, however, with her ground-breaking cosmetics brand Fenty Beauty, which launched in 2017.

She has since turned her eye to fashion, launching the Fenty fashion house in 2019, though this closed not long after it opened.

Now, her exploits have paid off as she has been named a billionaire.

How Did Rihanna Become A Billionaire?

Rihanna at the 51st NAACP Image Awards in 2020.
Paras Griffin/Getty Images

According to Forbes, much of Rihanna’s wealth has come, unsurprisingly, from outside the music business.

Rihanna started out in 2005, with her first album Music of the Sun being released by Def Jam the same year.

She did not have her musical breakthrough, however, until her album Good Girl Gone Bad in 2007, on which the tracks “Umbrella,” “Don’t Stop The Music” and “Take a Bow” were included.

From 2009, Rihanna went through a prolific album period where she released one a year until 2012, after which her latest album, Anti, was released in 2016.

All of her albums, even her first, have gone at least single platinum, and her last two albums, Unapologetic and Anti, both went to the top of the Billboard album chart.

Having said all of this, the way in which musical artists tend to make their money is through touring, of which Rihanna has done six concert tours.

She also co-headlined a tour with rapper Eminem called “The Monster Tour” after they worked together on four hit songs.

Rihanna has also made a mark on the movie business, starring in the all-female Ocean’s remake, Ocean’s 8, as a performer in Luc Besson’s Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets and in a recurring role in thriller series Bates Motel.

Despite this work making Rihanna a wealthy woman, it was not until she expanded into the beauty and fashion worlds that her wealth really took off.

A huge proportion of Rihanna’s wealth has come from her cosmetics company, Fenty Beauty.

Fenty Beauty launched in 2017 through Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy (LVMH), whose Kendo division produces items for the brand.

She launched with her Pro Filt’R foundation, which was lauded for its innovation and inclusivity, being one of the first brands to include 40 shades in its launch, which has since been increased to 50.

Rihanna at Fenty Beauty event
Rihanna helping someone with their make-up at the Sephora loves Fenty Beauty by Rihanna store event in Milan, Italy in 2018.
Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images

As well as this, in 2019 Fenty Beauty launched its concealer line, which was designed to pair with shades from the foundation collection, at which point the shade range was expanded.

Some of her more recent launches have included the Eaze Drop Blurring Skin Tint, a lightweight, lower coverage foundation, as well as a line of cream bronzers and blushes.

Forbes estimates Fenty Beauty to be worth $1.4 billion, which is a huge proportion of Rihanna’s overall wealth, estimated at $1.7 billion.

This makes her the second highest-earning entertainment star, after Oprah Winfrey.

In conjunction with Fenty Beauty, in July 2020 Rihanna launched Fenty Skin, a skincare range which was initially released with a toner, cleanser and SPF.

Since then she has branched out to body scrubs, moisturizers and eye creams, as well as an eau de parfum.

The final string to Rihanna’s bow is lingerie, with her Savage X Fenty line launching in 2018.

Rihanna at Savage X Fenty show
Rihanna onstage for the Savage X Fenty Show Vol. 2, which was then aired on Amazon Prime Video.
Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

The business is a joint venture with the TechStyle group and has an estimated worth of $270 million.

The different lines released, like Fenty Beauty, have also been inclusive, using models of different races and body types.

In a press release, Rihanna said of Savage X Fenty: “Lingerie is about celebrating your body and that’s what Savage is all about.

“Savage … is a representation of all and a validation that everyone is beautiful no matter what.”

Rihanna has launched her new lingerie collections through fashion shows, both of which were made available to view via Amazon Prime Video.

On the same day Savage X Fenty announced it was expanding, LVMH announced it would be shutting Rihanna’s short-lived high fashion brand, Fenty, which was open for just two years.

It released its last collection in November 2020 before officially announcing its closure in February 2021.

Fans of Rihanna should also look out for more music, as she has announced her ninth album has been in the works and was seen filming a music video with rapper A$AP Rocky earlier in 2021.

Rihanna and ASAP Rocky
Rihanna and A$AP Rocky filming a music video in the Bronx in New York City in July 2021.
Raymond Hall/Getty Images