Megan Thee Stallion Is the 1st Rapper to Cover ‘Sports Illustrated’ Swimsuit: ‘I Manifested It’  

Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Megan Thee Stallion
Megan Thee Stallion Rob Latour/Shutterstock

Body ody ody! Megan Thee Stallion, the self-proclaimed “hot girl coach,” just made history as the first rapper to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated Swimsuit, which on sale July 22. 

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The 26-year-old singer made quite the sizzling statement, rocking Fashion Nova’s MTS Sexy All Summer 2-Piece Bikini for the annual issue. But according to her, this monumental moment has been a long time coming. 

“I have a voice, I have a platform and I get to be the first rapper on the cover of Sports Illustrated,” the “WAP” singer said in a behind-the-scenes video during her cover photo shoot. “I’ve wanted to do it for so long. I’ve wanted to do it all my life. Like honestly, I was the little girl who was looking at Sports Illustrated like, ‘One day, this is gonna be me.’ And I manifested it. I wanted to do it and now I’m here.” 

Megan Thee Stallion 2021 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Cover
James Macari/Sports Illustrated

And, of course, Megan is here to offer a healthy lesson in confidence. 

“I love myself. I don’t know what you love, but I will make you love me,” she said. “And if you don’t love me, that’s fine too. You can go look at whatever you wanna look at boo. Why you here with me right now? You looking at me. So deal with it.” 

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The singer even took to Instagram to share her excitement over the issue, which was released on Monday, July 19. 

“REAL SPORT ILLUSTRATED SWIMSUIT EDITION COVER MODEL SHIT!!! 😛🔥Thee first female rapper on the cover of @si_swimsuit  😭😭 I want to thank all the strong women in my life who inspired me to love my body and live my best hot girl life. It means the world to me to be on this cover. DREAM COME TRUE!! 😛#SISwim21,” she captioned her post. 

The “Savage” singer wasn’t the only history-making individual to grace the cover though. Naomi Osaka and Leyna Bloom were also featured on their own respective covers. 

Naomi Osaka 2021 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Cover
Yu Tsai/Sports Illustrated

“I’m so proud to be the first Japanese and Haitian women to grace one of the covers,” the athlete, who stuns in a black mesh one-piece, said in a video. “I feel like that multi-cultural background is present in all of the things that I do. I try to incorporate that in everything, so hopefully you’ll see that.” 

The “incredible” experience is a bit surreal given the fact that the tennis player “grew up admiring” former cover stars like Tyra Banks and Beyoncé. “For me, it feels like a dream,” Osaka added. 

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Bloom, who is the first transgender cover model for the publication, feels similarly, calling the issue a “dream come true.” 

Leyna Bloom 2021 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Cover
Yu Tsai/Sports Illustrated

“This moment heals a lot of pain in the world. We deserve this moment; we have waited millions of years to show up as survivors and be seen as full humans filled with wonder,” she wrote via Instagram. “I am so happy, honored and humbled to share that I’m 1st trans woman to grace the cover of Sports Illustrated!”

Bloom continued: “I have dreamt a million beautiful dreams, but for girls like me, most dreams are just fanciful hopes in a world that often erases and omits our history and even existence. This moment is so powerful because it allows me to live forever even after my physical form is gone. Not a lot of people get to live in the future, so at this moment, I’m proudly choosing to live forever.” 

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