Kelly Clarkson was told to compete with 'naked' stars early in her career

·2-min read
Kelly Clarkson recalls her early struggles with fame credit:Bang Showbiz
Kelly Clarkson recalls her early struggles with fame credit:Bang Showbiz

Kelly Clarkson was told she had to compete with "naked people" in the media early in her music career.

The singer turned daytime TV host - who is taking over Ellen DeGeneres' iconic afternoon slot - was thrust into the spotlight two decades ago when she won 'American Idol' aged 20, and she found it difficult to navigate the industry.

She told Variety: "I remember this one tool I worked with — this dude came over my house and put down some magazines and was like, 'So this is what you’re competing with.' There were naked people on the cover!

"I have no problem with nudity. I’m, like, a total nudist. But that’s just not my vibe, artistry-wise. A little mystery goes a long way for me.

"But I literally looked at this older white man and was like, 'Uh, no. That’s not what I’m competing with. It might be what you feel like I am competing with, but that’s not me.' "

The 'Since U Been Gone' hitmaker also felt like a lot of people were trying to get her to portray a sexier pop star persona in line with the likes of Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, who were topping the charts at the time.

She said: "At the end of the day, a lot of people look at you as a product, because they’re in a business — they’ll get fired if they don’t make money. So I don’t blame them.

"Women love to be sexual. Everybody likes to be flirty. Everybody likes to be sensual. But every woman is not just that one thing; we are multifaceted. And they try to take that one thing and blow it up.

"I had to fight like hell to make sure that it didn’t push the envelope for me. I think it’s hard if you’re a young girl, a teenager. You’re still growing up."