Sam Smith says they finally love their body: ‘I have the opposite of body dysmorphia’

Sam Smith smiling while performing at the 2022 Jingle Bell Ball wearing a silver glittery jumpsuit

Sam Smith has opened up about their journey with self-love and finally feeling comfortable with their body.

“Unholy” hit-maker Sam, who is non-binary and uses they/them pronouns, explained how they went from feeling “self-conscious” to “fabulous” during the course of their career.

Speaking to The Sunday Times ahead of the release of their fourth album, Gloria, on Friday (27 January), Smith said: “Within my industry there is definitely that question of, ‘What should a pop star look like?’ When I was 25, I came off tour exhausted. I looked to role models in the body world.

“Every time I went to the pool, I felt self-conscious, but I forced myself to take my top off. It paid off because I now have the opposite of body dysmorphia.

“I look fabulous. I’m finally getting a tan. I’m burnt in places I’ve never been burnt,” they added.

The star, now 30, has always been open about their struggle with body image. They explained how, in the early stages of their career, pressure within the entertainment industry meant there was “always going to be a battle” in their head about how they looked.

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Since finding fame, Sam has had to fight tirelessly against trolls who have fat-shamed them.

In 2019, they posted a shirtless photo on Instagram and explained how they used to starve themselves before photoshoots and suffered from “body trauma” as a young child.

In the caption on the same photo, which has received more than 1.1million “likes” to date, Sam declared that they were determined to “fight the f**k back” and “reclaim their body”.

Sam’s contentment with their body image and identity has never been more apparent as during the promotion of Gloria and its first single, “Unholy”, which features Kim Petras.

The star has binned the white shirts and suit jackets that were ever-present throughout their first few years in the spotlight, instead donning glittering jumpsuits, sparkling corsets and gorgeous hot pink gowns.

Gloria‘s album cover sees Smith topless and staring confidently and unapologetically at the camera.

Speaking to GQ last year, Smith explained that they felt the way they presented themselves in the early days of their career led them to feeling “trapped”.

They added that people had begun to see their brand as “A Gay Male”.

“And that’s never really been me,” they explained. “I’ve always felt queer. I’ve always felt gender non-conforming. And I’ve always felt non-binary trans. My whole life. And it wasn’t until I had to sit in interviews every day and tell people my story again and again that I realised this narrative that was being created was only a small fraction of who I was.”

The first few songs on Gloria make it clear how far they have come in their journey of self-expression. The lyrics to “Love Me More” capture that in a nutshell. 

“Every day I’m trying not to hate myself,” they sing. “But lately, it’s not hurting like it did before. Maybe I am learning how to love me more.”

Gloria is out on Friday 27 January.

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