Here Comes Honey Boo Boo's Alana Thompson is all grown up and she's ready for the world to embrace it.
Thompson said she's started to experiment with beauty, like growing out her nails and playing with long lashes. But sometimes her social media followers (she has nearly 1 million on Instagram) comment on her look, calling it "too grown." But the TV star doesn't want to conform to society's expectations of her.
"I guess people still expect me to be little Honey Boo Boo, and I'm not anymore," she told Teen Vogue.
June "Mama June" Shannon's youngest daughter explained that the world has specific expectations of her in their mind, but she wants to debunk them.
Peyton Fulford/Teen Vogue
Peyton Fulford/Teen Vogue
"Just because I'm from the South, people expect me to be all country bumpkin, out riding four-wheelers all the time, but that's not really how it is," she said. "There are so many folks on my Instagram that do not like my nails or my eyelashes. But I do not care. As long as I like myself, I'm good."
Thompson's confident mindset comes from steering herself away from comparison.
Peyton Fulford/Teen Vogue Alana Thompson
"I don't ever look at people and I'm like, 'Oh, I wish I was like her,'" the star said. "Because I don't ever wish to be like nobody. I am my own person."
The same could be said for how she navigates seeing body shaming comments on social media. "I don't understand why people think this way," she said of the critical comments. "Just because I got a little bit of extra meat on my bones, you want to hate me? I'll never get body shaming."
But she knows how to overcome it. "Like, I know I'm beautiful, and I know I got a banging body, so...I don't care," Thompson added.
The past few years have been a bit of a roller coaster ride for the reality star's family, and in the interview, Thompson got candid about the difficulties she faced handling her mother's substance use during her formative years.
In March 2019, June was arrested on charges of possession of a controlled substance and drug paraphernalia after she allegedly had crack cocaine and a crack pipe on her. Her then-boyfriend, Eugene Edward "Geno" Doak, was also arrested, PEOPLE previously reported. (She pleaded not guilty and was sentenced to community service that fall.) Following the arrest, June's daughter Lauryn "Pumpkin" Shannon became Alana's legal guardian.
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"When my mama got real bad with her [drug use], I didn't know where I was going to end up. I'm proud of myself for how far I've come," Thompson said, noting that she's been getting "back on track" with their mother-daughter relationship.
"A lot of folks in this world do not realize how many people are actually really affected by drug and alcohol [use]...It's very, very hard," Thompson said. "It's something I'd wish on nobody, for real."
If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction, please contact the SAMHSA substance abuse helpline at 1-800-662-HELP.