Selena Gomez Explained Why A Past Album Cover Made Her Feel “Really Ashamed”

“It was a choice that I wasn't necessarily happy that I made.”

Selena Gomez said an album cover photo made her "really ashamed" in a new interview. Photo via Getty...
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Weeks ahead of the Season 2 premiere of Only Murders in the Building, Selena Gomez is opening up about her life, career, and evolving beyond Disney Channel. During The Hollywood Reporter’s annual Comedy Actress Roundtable, posted June 16, Gomez said she’s taken “control of the narrative” as she got older — “because growing up, I didn’t really have a choice.”

But that doesn’t mean every decision she did get to make since has been an easy one. After fellow actor Amy Schumer praised Gomez for charting her own course despite being “sexualized at such a young age,” Gomez acknowledged that those expectations were “really unfair,” and opened up about one moment she regretted in particular.

“I actually did an album cover, and I was really ashamed after I did it,” she said. “I had to work through those feelings because I realized it was attached to something deeper that was going on. And it was a choice that I wasn’t necessarily happy that I made.”

Gomez didn’t name the album in question, but she seemed to be talking about 2015’s Revival, on which she appears topless in a black-and-white photo. “I try to be myself, and myself isn’t — I’m not an overly sexual person,” Gomez added. “Sometimes I like to feel sexy, but it doesn’t mean it’s for somebody else. It can be for me.”

The Only Murders in the Building star has discussed her feelings about the album art before, telling Allure in 2020 that she “[felt] the need to show skin” during that era. “There was pressure to seem more adult on my album, Revival ... I really don't think I was [that] person.”

Social media surely can’t help with that pressure — which is part of why Gomez recently revealed on Good Morning America she hasn’t been online in more than four years. “It has changed my life completely,” she said of her decision. “I am happier, I am more present. I connect more with people. It makes me feel normal.”

In 2020, the Rare Beauty founder also opened to Bustle about dealing with public perception of her body and self-image. “Having yourself be exposed — and that just kind of went into my pre-teens, early 20s — and that was a lot about what I look like and the makeup I would use,” she said. “I don't read the internet anymore, but it just didn't make me feel good.”