Although it seems like the reality star has no qualms about taking off his shirt while on the show, he’s been candid about struggling with his appearance in the past. During season 26 of The Bachelor, Clayton shared his body image issues during a group date and noted that he “hated” himself as a kid. Following his confession, the lead appeared on a January 2022 episode of the “Talking It Out With Bachelor Nation” podcast — hosted by Bachelor Nation alums Mike Johnson and Bryan Abasolo — and further addressed his ongoing struggles.
During the interview, Clayton recalled wondering, “How am I going to look on camera?” before going on the show.
“I remember that was a big thought I had. The camera adds 10 pounds. How am I going to look on camera when this plays back?” he shared. “I’ll be honest with you, I was kind of scared. Well, here we’re going to find out right now how I look on camera. I had no idea. I was afraid it was going to put me in a little dark spiral. I’m like, ‘You look fat. There you go. You look fat on camera.'”
But, despite his “body dysmorphia,” Clayton went on to say that he’s in a “better place.” He explained, “I’m OK with it now because I’ve had enough people say, ‘Hey, you look like you’re in good shape.'” However, negative comments about his looks can put him into a spiral.
“That’s all it takes. All of sudden, it puts you right back into that negative mindset. That’s kind of the power of body dysmorphia; the fear of it is you never truly get rid of it,” Clayton shared. “It is a choice to get under control, but that requires a tremendous amount of effort.”
The Missouri native has since come up with ways to remember that “every day that I wake up, I’m better than I was the day before.” He continued, “As long as I get my workout in today, I’ve done something today to put me in a better position where tomorrow I’m going to wake up and I will be a better human being, a better individual and closer to that goal that I’m trying to achieve.'”
Scroll through the gallery for a roundup of Clayton’s shirtless photos.
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