Despite winning The X Factor, Alexandra Burke has revealed she ended up depressed by only reading the bad things being printed about her when starting out.
The 23-year-old, who won the public vote back in 2008, says she's had to grow a thick skin over the past four years.
“I was totally obsessed," Alex admits in an interview with Fabulous magazine this weekend. "I would only take notice of the bad things. I’d browse forums and look at these awful things that were written.
"But you have to grow a thick skin if you want to survive in this business."
But Alex, who last year left Simon Cowell's Syco label, admitted that even now she has a tough time.
She continues: "I've had to deal with a lot of stuff this year. It's been a learning curve - I've had to prove myself to a new record company. Some things didn't turn out how I wanted them, but I guess I don't have a right to moan.”
One of those things is sure to be the star's guest appearance on The X Factor live shows, filling in for an ill Kelly Rowland, an appearance which was met with some rather harsh press reports, and a remark that will probably haunt her forever.
A defiant Alex however insists: "I don’t care what Gary said afterwards – during the show he was telling me I was being brilliant and Louis was egging me on to keep going.”
You can read the full interview in Fabulous magazine, free with tomorrow's The Sun.