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Sam Smith credits Lady Gaga for helping them understand their gender identity

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Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for SAINT LAURENT

Sam Smith came out as nonbinary last September and also told fans their preferred pronouns, which is they and them.  Now, the “Stay with Me” singer opened up about how they discovered their gender identity and why they thank Lady Gaga.

Speaking with Vogue Tuesday to discuss the secret behind their glowing skin, Smith opened up about their childhood and focused on how makeup played a role in their coming out story.

“I came out when I was 10 years old,” the Grammy Award winner detailed. “When I hit 14, 15, I started to really question my gender and started to really want to express myself.”

“Makeup for me was the way to do that,” the 28-year-old singer continued, nodding to the childhood friend who introduced them to beauty products. “It doesn’t matter whatever gender you are, you know, it’s a form of expression… and it feels nice!”

Smith then revealed how Lady Gaga further helped them embrace their gender identity and fluidity.

When gushing about Gaga’s Haus Laboratories lip gloss, which is a staple in Smith’s daily beauty routine, they explained how the “Rain on Me” singer influenced such a pivotal moment in their life.

“Gaga is probably the reason why I actually came to terms with my gender.  I was 15 when The Fame came out and I was obsessed with Lady Gaga,” Smith noted. “She gave me complete permission to be myself and to be proud of my queerness. It was a form of expression, but it was also weirdly a form of protection.”

That protection, says Smith, was giving them the ability to say “to the homophobes and the bullies, ‘Stay away from me,’ a little bit because I’m confident and I’m powerful in my queerness.”

Smith’s complete beauty routine can be watched here.

By Megan Stone
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