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Is The Weeknd more popular than Rihanna?

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In the ever-evolving landscape of the music industry, popularity can be a fleeting concept, shifting with trends, releases, and the changing tastes of global audiences. The Weeknd and Rihanna are two iconic figures in contemporary music, each with a distinctive style and massive following. The question of who is more popular between the two is both intriguing and complex. This article delves into various aspects to compare the popularity of The Weeknd and Rihanna.

Musical Achievements and Awards

The Weeknd’s Rise to Stardom

The Weeknd, born Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, emerged on the music scene with a unique blend of R&B, pop, and alternative sounds. His debut mixtapes in 2011, later compiled into the album “Trilogy,” garnered critical acclaim and established his presence in the industry. His 2015 album, “Beauty Behind the Madness,” featuring hits like “Can’t Feel My Face” and “The Hills,” catapulted him to international fame.

Over the years, The Weeknd has amassed numerous awards, including Grammy Awards, Billboard Music Awards, and American Music Awards. His 2020 album, “After Hours,” with the record-breaking single “Blinding Lights,” has further solidified his status as a global superstar.

Rihanna’s Dominance in the Music World

Rihanna, born Robyn Rihanna Fenty, has been a dominant force in music since her debut in 2005 with the hit single “Pon de Replay.” Her versatility across genres such as pop, R&B, reggae, and dance has contributed to her widespread appeal. Albums like “Good Girl Gone Bad,” “Rated R,” “Loud,” and “Anti” have produced numerous chart-topping singles and iconic music videos.

Rihanna’s accolades include multiple Grammy Awards, American Music Awards, and Billboard Music Awards. She has been recognized for her influence in fashion and business, further enhancing her global appeal. Her hiatus from music has not diminished her popularity, as her fans eagerly await her next musical endeavor.

Social Media Influence

The Weeknd’s Digital Presence

The Weeknd has a substantial following on social media platforms, including Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. His posts often garner millions of likes and comments, reflecting his active engagement with fans. His music videos and performances frequently trend on YouTube, showcasing his significant digital footprint.

Rihanna’s Social Media Impact

Rihanna’s social media presence is equally impressive, if not more so. With millions of followers on Instagram, Twitter, and other platforms, she has a remarkable ability to influence trends and conversations. Her posts about fashion, beauty, and personal insights attract widespread attention and engagement.

Rihanna’s ventures beyond music, particularly her successful Fenty Beauty and Savage X Fenty lines, have amplified her influence. Her inclusive approach to beauty and fashion has resonated with a diverse audience, further boosting her social media presence.

Business Ventures and Cultural Impact

The Weeknd’s Business Endeavors

In addition to his music career, The Weeknd has ventured into various business projects. His collaborations with brands such as Puma and his investments in esports reflect his entrepreneurial spirit. These endeavors contribute to his overall popularity and financial success.

Rihanna’s Business Empire

Rihanna’s business acumen is widely recognized. Her Fenty Beauty line, launched in 2017, revolutionized the beauty industry with its inclusive range of products catering to all skin tones. Savage X Fenty, her lingerie brand, has also set new standards in the fashion world for its inclusivity and innovative marketing.

Rihanna’s influence extends to her philanthropic efforts through the Clara Lionel Foundation, which supports global education and emergency response programs. Her impact on culture and society goes beyond music, making her a multifaceted icon.

Streaming and Sales Metrics

The Weeknd’s Streaming Success

The Weeknd’s music consistently performs well on streaming platforms. His songs regularly top charts on Spotify, Apple Music, and other services. “Blinding Lights,” for instance, holds records for its longevity on the Billboard Hot 100 and its streaming numbers.

Rihanna’s Enduring Popularity

Despite a hiatus in releasing new music, Rihanna’s discography continues to be heavily streamed. Her classic hits like “Umbrella,” “We Found Love,” and “Diamonds” remain popular on streaming services. Her ability to maintain relevance in the digital age speaks volumes about her enduring appeal.

Live Performances and Tours

The Weeknd’s Concerts and Tours

The Weeknd is known for his captivating live performances and visually stunning concerts. His tours, such as the “Starboy: Legend of the Fall Tour” and the “After Hours Tour,” have been highly successful, drawing massive crowds worldwide. His ability to deliver high-energy shows contributes significantly to his popularity.

Rihanna’s Stage Presence

Rihanna’s live performances are equally electrifying. Her tours, including the “Loud Tour,” “Diamonds World Tour,” and “ANTI World Tour,” have been praised for their production quality and her dynamic stage presence. Rihanna’s ability to connect with her audience during live performances is a testament to her star power.

Cultural and Societal Influence

The Weeknd’s Cultural Impact

The Weeknd’s music often explores themes of love, heartbreak, and self-discovery, resonating with a wide audience. His contributions to the soundtracks of films like “Fifty Shades of Grey” and his involvement in the production of “The Idol” series showcase his influence in both music and film.

Rihanna’s Societal Contributions

Rihanna’s cultural impact extends beyond her music and business ventures. She has been a vocal advocate for social justice, using her platform to address issues such as racial equality, climate change, and women’s rights. Her influence in shaping cultural conversations and advocating for positive change enhances her global popularity.


When comparing the popularity of The Weeknd and Rihanna, it’s evident that both artists have achieved extraordinary success in their careers. The Weeknd’s consistent musical output and digital presence keep him at the forefront of the music industry. Rihanna’s multifaceted empire, encompassing music, fashion, and philanthropy, ensures her enduring influence and widespread appeal.

Ultimately, the answer to who is more popular may vary depending on the criteria considered—musical achievements, social media influence, business ventures, or cultural impact. Both The Weeknd and Rihanna are icons in their own right, each contributing uniquely to the fabric of contemporary music and culture.