'I can't win': Billie Eilish says she was called 'a whore' for wearing a 'tame' bathing suit

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Billie Eilish is speaking openly about being shamed for wearing a bathing suit. (Photo by Gary Miller/Getty Images)
Billie Eilish is speaking openly about being shamed for wearing a bathing suit. (Photo by Gary Miller/Getty Images)

Billie Eilish is opening up about receiving backlash for “showing off” her body in a “tame” one-piece bathing suit.

In a new interview with Dazed magazine, the 18-year-old “Bad Guy” singer spoke candidly about the constant criticism she receives whenever she parts from her trademark uniform of baggy clothes.

On Jan. 10, Eilish shared a collection of photos and videos to Instagram taken during a Hawaiian vacation with friends. In one video, Eilish is seen standing under a shower head, with only her head and shoulders in frame. A separate video features Eilish sitting in a boat, visible from the waist-up turning away from camera while wearing a one-piece swimsuit. The mere suggestion of Eilish’s body was enough to incite fury from fans.

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“It was trending,” Eilish told the magazine of the videos. “There were comments like, ‘I don’t like her any more because as soon as she turns 18 she’s a whore.’ Like, dude. I can’t win. I can-not win.”

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The Grammy winning artist has previously said she feels comfortable wearing oversized clothes to avoid being sexualized, and prevent any conversation or criticism of her body.

“I never want the world to know everything about me. That’s why I wear big, baggy clothes. Nobody can have an opinion because they haven't seen what’s underneath,” Eilish said in a behind-the-scenes video for Calvin Klein. “Nobody can have an opinion because they haven't seen what’s underneath. Nobody can be like, ‘she’s slim-thick,’ ‘she’s not slim-thick,’ ‘she’s got a flat ass,’ ‘she's got a fat ass.’”

Billie Eilish has said she prefers to wear baggy clothes to avoid being "sexualized." (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
Billie Eilish has said she prefers to wear baggy clothes to avoid being "sexualized." (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

In 2019, Eilish made headlines when she was photographed by paparazzi wearing a tank-top on what Dazed reports was a 34ºC day. The photo quickly went viral, with many of Eilish’s fans calling her a hypocrite for her outfit.

“I saw comments like, ‘How dare she talk about not wanting to be sexualized and wear this?!” Eilish said of the incident.

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The constant policing of her body and actions from fans and the media coincides with the teen trying to make sense of her own feelings about her appearance. Eilish has spoken about struggling with body dysmorphia as well as anxiety and depression.

“There was a point last year where I was naked and I didn’t recognize my body ’cos I hadn’t seen it in a while,” she said. “I would see it sometimes and be like, ‘Whose body is that?’”

Eilish faced backlash after sharing a photo of herself on a beach vacation. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)
Eilish faced backlash after sharing a photo of herself on a beach vacation. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

As she continues to navigate the treacherous waters of growing up in the limelight, Eilish said she has come to a better place body-image wise.

“It’s not that I like (my body) now, I just think I’m a bit more OK with it,” she explained. “If I wore a dress to something, I would be hated for it. People would be like, ‘You’ve changed, how dare you do what you’ve always rebelled against?’ I’m like, ‘I’m not rebelling against anything, really.’ I can’t stress it enough. I’m just wearing what I wanna wear. If there’s a day when I’m like, ‘You know what, I feel comfortable with my belly right now, and I wanna show my belly,’ I should be allowed to do that.”

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