Lil Nas X On How Wearing Skirts on Tour Helped Set His 'Younger Self Free'

"I feel like I'm changing some minds."

Lil Nas X is reflecting on the impact of his fashion choices.

In an interview with PEOPLE for its latest issue, the singer opened up about his style, and shared how wearing skirts on tour made him feel like he was setting his “younger self free.”

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“Style is a form of self-expression,” said Lil Nas X, whose real name is Montero Lamar Hill, said. “It’s a way to show people who you are, or at least how you want them to perceive you. I feel like to get further in life, you have to shed skins and do things that you normally wouldn’t.”

The Grammy-winning artist — who stars in Coach’s latest campaign video — added that he was initially “really nervous” to perform in a skirt at a concert in his hometown.

“I was really nervous about going out on stage in front of my family and everybody in my cute, little Coach skirt,” Lil Nas X recalled. “But as soon as I walked out, I felt like I was setting my younger self free.”

“Afterwards, my family — a lot of whom used to believe in everything opposite to what’s up on that stage — told me they were really proud,” he added. “I feel like I’m changing some minds.”

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The “Industry Baby” singer went on to reflect on his journey in the limelight, sharing that his personality is “the same” as it was before he was famous, but he’s ultimately changed — for the better — in several ways.

“I was always the goofy class clown,” he said, noting that he’s now a “lot more ambitious and unafraid to go after my dreams.”

“I’m less afraid to step out of my comfort zone,” he added. “Lil Nas X is helping Montero become more himself. Music has made me much more confident.”

Last month, the rapper — who came out as gay in 2019 — showed off his hilarious sense of humor when he revealed on Twitter how he reacted after anti-LGBTQ protesters picketed outside his concert in Boston: he sent them pizza. Lil Nas X later said the group “didn’t want” the pizza, but shared that “one of the homophobic protestors” caught his eye.

“I sent them pizza!” he recalled to PEOPLE. “One of the protestors was actually really cute, and I called him out on Twitter, but I haven’t heard from him. He’s either laughing or having a really hard time in the group chat right now!”

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