Billie Eilish: ‘I feel my strongest when I feel manly’

Billie Eilish says she feels ‘strongest’ when she feels ‘manly’

The star opened up about her experience growing up in the spotlight in an interview for BBC 100 Women in Conversation.

Last year, the 20-year-old appeared on the cover of BritishFashion wore a satin corset – something that caused quite a stir among the public as she usually appeared in baggy dresses.

The singer had previously been criticized for defying gender stereotypes, but she also received backlash for appearing to be conforming.

“I love these photos and I loved this shoot. Do what you want, whenever you want,” Eilish wrote on Instagram at the time in response to the criticism.

In an interview that will be broadcast BBC THREE On Tuesday night (December 6), the star explained how she feels comfortable expressing “a balance of both” sides of herself, despite feeling “most powerful” when she’s male.

“I feel my strongest when I’m feeling masculine,” she said, adding, “I can also find strength in femininity, it’s kind of a balance between the two.”

This caused the interviewer to question what she meant by “male”.

“I don’t know – based on how I walk and stand and my clothes and my face – and my jewelry and my fingers, just everything I am day to day,” she explained.

“I feel more male than female, it just makes me feel better,” she affirmed.

Eilish said this was something she found difficult to understand when she was younger.

“I struggled with it [preferring to feel masculine] for a long time because I wanted to feel feminine and liked it, but I just didn’t really do it,” she said.

“But then you find moments where you can have that and it still feels good. For example, I now wear a tighter shirt and a lower-cut shirt.”

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She added, “The older me would be like ‘Eurgh! ‘Please don’t!’ but I like it now and it’s just the balance of the two,” she added.

The singer also discussed growing up in public – calling the experience “bruises”: “I just had such bad imposter syndrome.”

The turning point, however, came when Eilish felt she was gaining the public’s trust.

“Once people started trusting me, because I’m a woman and everything, and especially as a very young woman and especially in this industry, it’s very hard to get people to believe in you.”

She added: “It was a very satisfying moment when I realized that people actually wanted to hear what I had to say, or believed in what I had to say – and when I was finally in control, I was.” that’s a really good moment.”

BBC 100 Women in Conversation: Billie Eilish airs on BBC iPlayer from 5 December at 10pm and on Tuesday 6 December at 9.35pm on BBC THREE. Billie Eilish: ‘I feel my strongest when I feel manly’


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