"Can't Remember to Forget You (feat. Rihanna)" (CD Single)

Music review by
Grace Montgomery, Common Sense Media
"Can't Remember to Forget You (feat. Rihanna)" (CD Single) Music Poster Image
Forgettable She Wolf and RiRi duet has super sexy video.

Parents say

age 16+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 4 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

The song is about perpetuating the same mistakes and being with someone who clearly isn't right for you, which isn't a very positive message: "I go back again / fall off the train / land in his bed / repeat yesterday's mistakes."  

Positive Role Models & Representations

Although Shakira keeps a pretty low profile, Rihanna often makes headlines for her revealing outfits, feuds with other artists, and on-and-off violent relationship with Chris Brown, making her a poor role model for kids. 


Though the lyric "I rob and I kill to keep him with me" isn't used in the literal sense, it still has a violent connotation and could be confusing to kids. 


The music video shows Shakira and Rihanna in very little clothing (butt cheeks are fully shown) writhing around on a bed and against a wall, splashing in water, and touching each other. The lyrics also talk about "kissing in the moonlight" and "landing in his bed."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

The music video shows both Shakira and Rihanna smoking cigars.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that "Can't Remember to Forget You" is a duet by Shakira and Rihanna about how love can make you do things you know aren't good for you -- like stay with someone you'd rather forget. Although the song doesn't have any iffy language or references to drugs or alcohol, it has mature references to sex and relationships and a very sexy video featuring the scantily clad pop stars. This is a song most appropriate for older tweens and up. 

Wondering if "Can't Remember to Forget You (feat. Rihanna)" (CD Single) is OK for your kids?

Set preferences and get age-appropriate recommendations with Common Sense Media Plus. Join now

Continue reading Show less

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 12-year-old Written byandreiairiscord... January 30, 2018
Adult Written byRosebud95 April 16, 2014

I don't know what I think of this..

It's catchy when you here it, but it doesn't really stick with you like a good song should.

Sex: The music video is pretty provocative
Teen, 16 years old Written bywertj July 30, 2014
Kid, 11 years old July 26, 2014

Ok song, but that video...

The song is ok and pretty much appropriate, but don't let your kids watch the video.

What's the story?

Columbian singer Shakira and Barbadian performer Rihanna pair up on the track CAN'T REMEMBER TO FORGET YOU, the lead single from Shakira's self-titled album. The ska-influenced song is about the kind of intense magnetic connection that keeps bringing you back to the same person, even though it's not a healthy relationship. The steamy video shows the two pop stars in very little clothing writhing suggestively on various surfaces.

Is it any good?

Pairing two extremely talented performers can set expectations pretty high, and, unfortunately, they're just not met here. "Can't Remember to Forget You" is a fairly forgettable tune. Although the reggae-style beats are frothy and fun, and Shakira and Rihanna sound as good as ever, the song is predictable and kind of boring after the first verse -- and the overly sexy video is pretty corny. 

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the theme of the song. Why do people stay in bad relationships? Why would someone repeat the same mistakes over and over again?

  • Why do you think the video is so sexual? Does it add anything to the song, or is it just sensational?

Music details

  • Artist: Shakira
  • Release date: January 14, 2014
  • Type: Single
  • Label: RCA
  • Genre: Pop
  • Parental advisory: No
  • Edited version available: No
  • Last updated: July 15, 2015

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate