Billy Porter, Literal Work of Art, Dazzles on the Cover of “Allure”

The "Pose" actor makes history as the magazine's first male cover star.

The category is: historic magazine cover realness.

Early Thursday morning, Allure unveiled its February 2020 cover star: Pose’s Billy Porter. The Emmy-winning star of FX’s groundbreaking queer-inclusive drama not only looks like an actual work of art on the centerfold; he also made history as the first man—and as a result, the first gay man—to cover Allure in the Condé Nast property’s nearly 30-year history.

“So proud to have @theebillyporter making history as the first man to be featured on the cover of @Allure_magazine,” Allure editor-in-chief Michelle Lee wrote on Twitter.

Speaking to writer-editor Ashley C. Ford, Porter opened up about being a veritable fashion icon (who could forget that iconic Met Gala ’fit?!), coming into his power (he’s one letter away from EGOT status!), and always staying true to himself, even if it meant losing work.

Taylor Hill/FilmMagic
Porter at 2019’s camp-themed Met Gala.

“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.”

Luckily, murder was not in the cards for Porter, who’s gone on to make a career out of being flamboyant and authentic, and made the world better for it.

Bask in the full glory of Porter’s Allure cover story on the magazine’s website.

Brooklyn-based writer and editor. Probably drinking iced coffee or getting tattooed.