Music icon Boy George made his name in pop culture with his soulful voice as the lead singer of Grammy Award-winning band Culture Club—and his loud, colorful make-up and androgynous style.
In a press conference Thursday ahead of the band's concert in Manila on Saturday, the British singer and songwriter admitted that his appearance is not only an image, but has also served as his mask and protection from the ceaseless scrutiny of the public eye.
His secret to maintaining a youthful and fun appearance more than 30 years after the band was formed? Max Factor.
According to George, "There's lots of Max Factor on me ever since. Basically, one of the things that I discovered when I was a teenager is make-up and the power of transformation. I never looked back. Make-up for me is my mask, my protection."
The singer also shared that his style is mostly inspired by what people are NOT wearing. Furthermore, he does not see himself as a fashion icon because, for him, style and comfort always comes first before following the trend.
“I look online and I do the opposite of what's trending. For me, I am not a fashion person because fashion, for the most part, is about wearing money. When people buy expensive fashion, they are basically saying 'Look how much money I've got. I can afford this handbag, these shoes,'” he said.
“For me, it's about style. What would be something that somebody wouldn't wear is something I probably would wear.”
On bashers: 'Just block them'
Aside from adoring fans, his unique sense of style has also gathered some negative comments from audience all around the world.
Despite this reality, Boy George has maintained his faith in humanity.
“The thing is, you will find out that most people are very sweet. They are mostly very nice, and they just want me to greet them 'happy birthday!' which I have actually grown to be good at,” he said.
The British music icon added, “When anybody is nasty or negative, I just block them. I don't give them any oxygen, as much as I want to. I'd love to say something back, but you will just feed it. It's like feeding a dinosaur or a dragon. It's better to block them. They go away. I wish there's an ability like that in real life.”
For him, just as it is for most people, confidence is key.
“Be who you are, be proud of who you are. Self-love is the most powerful thing. I don't mean arrogance. Just be proud of who you are. There will always be people who love you. There will also be people who don't, who will not understand. Focus on the people who love you. That's where you put your energy. Don't worry about the people who say negative things, the people who don't understand,” George said.
Boy George and Culture Club arrived in Manila this week for a “one-night only” concert on June 18, Saturday, at the Smart Araneta Coliseum. The concert is part of the band's 40-city tour, which includes cities in the US, Australia, Mexico, and Japan. — BM, GMA News