Dua Lipa is not interested in being passed over or looked down upon in the music video.
Lipa caught up with the appropriately titled Attitude Magazine for the publication’s December 2020 issue. The “New Rules” singer reflects on the time a music video director insisted she wears a skirt during production. Lipa, 25, firmly opposed the request.
“You’re on a music video and the director goes, ‘I definitely think you need to wear a skirt’ – because someone wants to see, you know, ‘U.K.’s pop star in a cute outfit,'” she says. “I’m like, ‘Well, I’m going to wear trousers because it’s f***ing freezing.’ I know how to stand my ground and hold it down.”
Lipa understands the necessity to prove yourself as a woman in the music industry.
“That’s just being a woman in the industry. A lot of people see it, particularly in pop music, that you’re manufactured or whatever, so you have this underlying pressure or anxiety to constantly prove [yourself] to people, especially when you write your own lyrics,” she explains. “You have to work a little bit harder to be taken seriously.”
Touching on her mental health, Lipa admitted memes mocking her dance moves hurt her feelings.
“I experienced a s**t ton at the end of my first record, and it was definitely something that gave me anxiety and made me upset and made me feel like I wasn’t good enough and made me feel like, maybe I’m not meant to be here and on the stage,” she says. “Even after the Grammys, some people were like, ‘Well, she doesn’t deserve it.’”
The criticism really got to her.
“There were so many things, especially when you start out, like a video of me dancing and they’re like, ‘Ah well, she has no stage presence’ – but they’d never been to one of my shows, they’d never seen me perform,” Lipa shares. “They would take one small snippet and run with it and it would become a whole thing.”
“For a short period of time, it messed with my mental health,” she adds. “I’d go on stage and if somebody was filming me, in my head, I wasn’t, like, ‘Oh, they’re filming me because they want to keep it.’ I was like, ‘They’re going to film it so they can laugh at me or something.”
The musician also asserts her support for the LGBTQ+ community.
“To be able to use my platform to spread awareness, show support, talk about it, to make people feel seen, heard and safe, [to] communicate with charities and try to do my part as much as I can,” Lipa says. “I see that as my duty.”
“It’s entirely a right to be able to love who you want, not just because I have friends in the LGBTQ community, but because we’re all human and we deserve it,” she concludes. “It’s something I feel very connected to and will continue to fight for.”