Global pop star Ellie Goulding has revealed that she used to hide parts of her face from the camera - because they were not “aesthetically pleasing enough”.
The singer-songwriter, who can count winning a clutch of Brit Awards and singing at the royal wedding among her achievements, said that she was once held back by her crippling insecurities.
“At one time, I was getting all this musical success, but I wasn’t getting all the things that went with it, like magazine covers,” she told ES Magazine.
“I was convinced for a long time I wasn’t aesthetically pleasing enough. I would have to angle my face to hide the side of my nose, or my chin.”
The 27-year-old said that it was only when she learned to overcome her lack of self-confidence that the tables began to turn.
“Then I stopped caring. I let go. Put a different energy out there — then [the covers] all started to happen,” she said.
Goulding, who has sold five million albums, also criticised those who tweeted negative comments about her appearance after she performed on The X Factor last year.
“They said my body was ‘too athletic’. Too athletic?”
She asked: “Isn’t it admirable that someone has worked so hard to look good and be healthy?”
The Herefordshire singer, whose debut album Lights went to number one in the UK Albums Chart in 2010, said she was astounded by her success: “I thought, ‘How am I here? Why do I deserve this?’ I couldn’t believe in the good things happening to me. I would be waiting for the universe to deliver the bad thing that would take it all back.”
Goulding has previously spoken openly about suffering from panic attacks and having cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) to help her overcome her demons.
But she is not the first – and she certainly won’t be the last – young successful woman to be cowed by the pressure to be flawless.
Olympic gold-winning medallist Rebecca Aldington reportedly underwent nose slimming surgery in February this year after being trolled about her looks on Twitter.
Speaking afterwards she told the Daily Mail: “I’m definitely happier with how I look now.
“But I wouldn’t necessarily say happy. I think you still always see the same thing when you look in the mirror. A lot of people tell me that you get more comfortable with yourself with age and obviously I’ve still got a lot of growing up to do."