Former Little Mix member Jesy Nelson says she starved herself and wore corsets that bruised her every day to 'be this girl people would accept'

by 24britishtvOct. 7, 2021, 4:40 p.m. 13
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• Jesy Nelson spoke with Glamour UK about her body image while in British girl group Little Mix.
• She said she starved herself, wore painful corsets, got lip fillers, and more to feel accepted.
• Nelson said she's now "in control" of her body, and feels better solo than she did in the band.

Singer Jesy Nelson is opening up about her time in Little Mix, and the toll she says it took on her mental health and body image.

During an exclusive interview with Glamour UK, the 30-year-old musician spoke about life after leaving Little Mix, the first-ever girl group to win Britain's 2011 season of X-Factor. She said she's recently "taken control" of her life after a decade spent "down a black hole of misery and real mental health problems."

According to Nelson, that 10-year span included eating disorders, cosmetic surgery, a suicide attempt, and more.

"I was a nightmare," Nelson said of her time in the band. "A lot of people who worked with me would have thought I was a pain in the arse and a real diva. The reality was I was a young girl going through trauma of people 24/7 slating me physically."

In particular, it was events like Little Mix photo shoots that proved to be especially tough for Nelson. Speaking with Glamour UK, she described them as "a terrifying experience," and said she'd be "so anxious" about the clothes she'd have to wear and how she'd look "compared to the other girls" that she couldn't sleep at night.

"I look back and I think how crazy it got," she said. "I'd starve myself for days and I'd wear these corsets every single day, pulled so tight I could barely breathe. I used to wear corsets every single day to make my waist smaller, which is mental but I so badly just wanted to look like Jade, Leigh, and Perrie."

Nelson added that she "couldn't breathe half the time" she was working, and that the corsets would leave her body covered in bruises.

"My first nightmare moment was our very first shoot when the stylist had all my clothes in a size 8 and I'm a 12," she said. "They didn't fit. I felt awful, I felt fat, and that was how I always felt."

She also said she relied on makeup and other beauty procedures to conceal insecurities after reading hate comments online.

"I did everything I could to not be myself," she said. "I tried ridiculous diets to lose weight. I changed my hair all the time. I got lip fillers. I did everything I could to be this girl people would accept."

Nelson left the band in 2020 after having panic attacks about returning to the group following the pandemic, according to Glamour UK. As a result, the musician said she now feels "in control" of her life, without "constant anxiety" or pressures to be like anyone else.

She also said she's stopped wearing corsets and getting lip fillers, and now wears less makeup than she used to.

"It's so completely liberating and that has been massive for my state of mind," she said.

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