"We looked in the mirror and we said some affirmations," Siwa said of their second day working together on the show
JoJo Siwa is often all smiles, but the entertainer admits she does have insecurities that sometimes affect her self-image.
On Friday, PEOPLE got an exclusive sneak peek of the 20-year-old social media sensation’s upcoming interview on the Comfort Food with Kelly Rizzo podcast airing this Sunday.
As the ladies chatted in the wide-ranging interview, the host complimented Siwa on how she exudes confidence before the “Kid In a Candy Store” artist made a surprising confession.
“I'm very insecure about my body,” she said. “So insecure about my body.”
“It used to be very bad. Pre Dancing with the Stars.” Siwa said if you look at videos from when she was “18 and younger,” she would always be dressed “in long sleeves, always covered [with] long pants, [and] long, long, long sleeves.”
Rizzo added that she could only imagine the criticism the then-teen was facing, being under a microscope while on a national television show.
Siwa recalled a time early on in the series when she began to feel self-conscious.
The entertainer said she had reached around 130 lbs. at 18, and claimed that her DWTS partner Jenna Johnson asked her to take off her “big black baggy T-shirt” so that her body could be seen.
“And I just started sobbing and she instantly knew what was going on. And this was literally day two,” Siwa said.
She said that Johnson asked her to walk over to a mirror and look at her body while wearing a sports bra, but Siwa was hesitant.
“I was like, ‘Jen, I can't… like [that’s] going to open a can of worms that I've suppressed for years. I'm fine how I am. Like, I can't, I can't open this can of worms. Not today, not here, not now, not this year,’ ” Siwa said.
However, Johnson remained persistent and succeeded in helping Siwa see herself in a positive light.
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“We looked in the mirror and we said some affirmations and she said, ‘I'm going to help you,’” the "Boomerang" artist told Rizzo.
“She's who got me into working out. She's who got me into feeling good about myself. Got me into body confidence,” Siwa said of her DWTS partner, though she admitted it can still be a challenge to maintain that feeling at times.
She added that while she’s never had “an extreme problem,” she hopes that her “experience can also help others.”
And this isn’t the first time Siwa has opened up about her respect for Johnson.
In a September 2021 Instagram post, the Special Forces: World's Toughest Test alum praised her former costar.
“I couldn’t ask for a better partner! Thank you for taking me through this process while making it the most fun ever,” she wrote in a caption of the two of them dancing together. Siwa and Johnson finished in second place on season 30 of the dancing competition.
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