Queen of Hip-Hop-Soul, Mary J Blige is New York Magazine’s February cover girl, as she stuns in a black dress and blonde hair for the cover page. 

The award-winning singer and actor,, who got nominated for the Golden Globes talked about music, movies, her career in general and of course her style over time.

Talking to the New York Magazine’s editor-at-large Carl Swanson, Blige talks about the style she created with her first producer, the then-19-year-old Sean “Puffy” Combs a.k.a ‘Brother Love’;

“What I loved about Puff is he immediately saw — I mean, instead of a tight dress, he put a baggy Armani suit on me with some Teflon boots. I wore a miniskirt sometimes, a pleated miniskirt, but I wore boots with it. But I hated skirts, I hated dresses, because I sit like this” —  according to the profile, she leaned forward in the interview, elbows on knees, legs spread and explained “I can’t sit like that with a miniskirt on.”

Blige says that her tomboy look was also about “survival.” “I worked with a lot of men and grew up around a lot of men. I didn’t want them to look at me like that,” she tells Swanson.

Eventually her look evolved to become more glamorous: “It took me a long time. I didn’t want to wear lipstick and all this stuff,” she says. “I’d fight not to wear these little shorts [in videos], and I’d end up wearing them and the video would be great. And you’d be like, Okay, that’s not bad, and you start to grow.”

See more photos of the editorial below;