Chloe Bailey used to let online trolls get to her, but she’s finally learned to ignore the hate she receives every time she posts to social media.
In a new interview with PEOPLE, the actress and musician opened up about her extremely confident onstage persona, admitting that she hasn’t always felt the same behind the scenes.
“We both didn’t really know who we were individually without the other, and that’s what was really scary for me,” Bailey said of launching her solo career without her sister, Halle Bailey. “It was a moment of self-doubt where I was like, ‘Can I do this without my sister?'”
Chloe first launched her solo music career with the single, “Have Mercy” and a few performances in 2021, though she was instantly met with criticism for being too sexual. While she maintained her confident onstage persona, the singer says that wasn’t easy, admitting: “deep inside it was killing me, to be honest.”
“I never understood it. I’d look at my peers and be like, ‘We’re all the same age. They’re showing as much as me, if not more. But if I do it, I’m ridiculed to the max,'” she told the publication, noting that she eventually deleted Twitter for a period of time to block out the negativity.
“As much as I would see it and try to act like it didn’t affect or bother me, it would,” Chloe continued. “I was starting to believe the lies that the trolls were saying online, and I started to look down on myself even more than what I already was doing with my own insecurities. Once I ignored it, I’ve been good.”
“A lot of times I’ll be confused because the things that I post that people will have the most think pieces about, every other girl be posting the same thing,” she told the rapper.
“I’ve been sitting there thinking in my head and I’ve come to the conclusion it’s because they’re not used to seeing me in that light,” Chloe insisted. “They’ve grown up with my sister and I since we had our little short baby locks on YouTube and everything. But it’s like, ‘this has been me.’ When I perform, that’s when I feel the most confident and the most sexy. It’s nothing contrived or forced about it. That’s just passion coming out.”
Bailey released her debut solo album, In Pieces, today, Friday, March 31.