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We’re happy Janelle Monáe is “much happier” when she’s showing skin, but she sparked some outrage when she flashed the crowd during her performance at Essence Fest on Friday night.

2023 Essence Festival Of Culture

Source: Josh Brasted / Getty

The free-spirited singer broke the internet with her barely-there outfits to usher in the Age of Pleasure with her new album. After the “Lipstick Lover” music video, Janelle continued the topless tour on the cover of Rolling StoneIn that issue, the formerly formal star explained her new au naturale aesthetic, saying she’s “much happier when my t**ties are out.”

2023 Essence Festival Of Culture

Source: Josh Brasted / Getty

Unfortunately, viewers didn’t feel the same way after nearly freeing the nip during her Essence Fest performance. The Glass Onion star took the stage in an oversized floral cape and matching crown.

It’s not exactly a shock that she quickly stripped down after a few minutes of performing in the NOLA heat and humidity. After all, the singer only wore a hat in the flyer for her performance.

Janelle echoed her tux era with a black and white string bikini top, shorts, and hat for most of the set. During “Yoga,” she defiantly flashed her breast again.

“You cannot police me, so get off my areola!” she sang, before standing ten toes down about that particular lyric.

Did Janelle Monáe go too far? Check out the moment that had fans and critics clashing after the flip!


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