Photo Credit: Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage
UPDATE: A rep for Christina Aguilera released a statement saying the quotes about her weight are false. Click here to read the latest.
Christina Aguilera is no longer letting record executives decide what she looks like. The pop star, who has recently been flaunting a curvier figure, first faced backlash for gaining weight when she was 21 years old. At the time, she was told that her career was over unless she lost weight.
"During the promotion of my album Stripped [in 2002], I got tired of being a skinny, white girl," Aguilera, 31, told Billboard magazine. "I am Ecuadorian but people felt so safe passing me off as a skinny, blue-eyed white girl. The next time my label saw me, I was heavier, darker and full of piercings! Let me tell you, that wasn't an easy pill for them to swallow."
The "Your Body" singer recalls that she gained about 15 pounds during her Stripped tour with Justin Timberlake. In response, her management called a "serious emergency meeting" and gave her a major guilt trip.
"Basically, they told me I would affect a lot of people if I gained weight -- the production, musical directors," said Aguilera. "[They claimed] people I toured with would also miss out if I gained weight because I would sell no records or tickets for my shows."
The meeting had the intended effect: Christina lost the weight, and became "toothpick thin" by the time her Back to Basics album came out. But she never forgave the industry for trying to take control of her body. While putting together her new album, Lotus, Aguilera made it clear that her weight was nobody else's business.
"I told them during this Lotus recording, 'You are working with a fat girl. Know it now and get over it,'" she told Billboard. "They need a reminder sometimes that I don't belong to them. It's my body. My body can't put anyone in jeopardy of not making money anymore -- my body is just not on the table that way anymore."
The singer, who is taking a break from The Voice to promote Lotus, recently gushed to Lucky about embracing her more mature body.
"I love that I now have a booty," she said. "And obviously, I love showing my cleavage."
Even a record label couldn't argue with that!