Jesy Nelson Responds To Blackfishing Accusations
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Featured Image Credit: Jesy Nelson/Instagram
Jesy Nelson has responded to "blackfishing" accusations for the first time in an interview about her life after leaving Little Mix.
The term “blackfishing” refers to when white people alter their appearance - for example their facial features, skin colour and hair - to resemble those of black or mixed-race people.
Addressing the controversy during the Guardian interview, the 30-year-old said: "I would never want to offend anyone, and that was really upsetting. I wasn’t aware that’s how people felt."
Celebs including Kim Kardashian, Iggy Azalea and influencer Emma Hallberg have been called out on social media for perceived blackfishing in recent years.
The term was first coined by journalist Wanna Thompson, after she noticed influencers on Instagram “cosplaying” as black women.
Interviewer Simon Hattenstone added Jesy seemed "bewildered" by the accusation.
The Little Mixer has spoken candidly in the past about her self-image trolling over her appearance on social media.
Jesy discussed the extent the trolling had on her mental wellbeing in her BBC Three documentary Odd One Out, where she even discussed attempting to take her own life at her lowest point.
The online bullying began when Jesy was competing on The X Factor in 2011 with Leigh-Anne Pinnock, Jade Thirlwall and Perrie Edwards.
She admitted that the comments she received online about her appearance made it hard for her to fulfil her commitments to the band.
"I would leave halfway through a photoshoot, because I couldn't bear looking at myself or being in front of a camera. I used to feel disgusted in myself," she revealed.
"And if the stylist hadn't got the right size for me – by accident – I used to go into a meltdown and think, 'It's not just because I've got the wrong size clothes, it's because I'm too fat to be in them.”
After quitting Twitter eight years ago, she revealed in her Guardian interview she feels she is able to handle negative comments she comes across elsewhere. “Hand on my heart, it’s like water off a duck’s back now."