Singer/songwriter ED SHEERAN was continually snubbed by record label bosses due to his red hair and chubby shape.
The Brit enjoyed a stellar breakthrough with his debut + in 2011, and has since gone on to sell millions of copies of the album around the world.
However, Sheeran reveals he had a battle on his hands to convince industry executives that his image would not hamper his ability to win over fans.
He says, "Every single label I had gone to at the time had told me this song wasn't a hit. They said this song wouldn't work.
"And the fact that I was slightly chubby and ginger was not a good 'marketing tool' for them. So it did definitely feel like it wasn't going to happen."
Sheeran was eventually signed by bosses at Asylum Records after amassing a huge online following thanks to his independent EP releases, and now he insists he is proud of his looks: "Being an individual makes you stand out from the crowd."