James Arthur has claimed he believes the "whole nation think he's a homophobe who looks like a monster" after he described an unknown rapper as a "f***ing queer" in a radio rap battle.
The 'X Factor' winner issued a public apology earlier this month when he made a return to the show, and has now given an interview to The Sun to insist again he is not homophobic.
"I've been an idiot. All I can say is it was ego - foolish, foolish pride. I got ideas above my station and I made mistakes," he said.
"All my confidence has disappeared because the whole nation thinks I'm a homophobe who looks like a monster."
He continued: "I'm 100 million per cent not homophobic. I despise that label being attached to me.
"I made ten male gay friends on 'X Factor'. I shared a bed with Rylan Clark for ten weeks. I was spooning that guy.
He also claimed he was "more feminine than some gay men" after growing up in a house of five women.
"I probably look like the archetypal bully. Now people look at me as if I might beat up a gay guy. That really upsets me," he added.
Meanwhile, 'X Factor' judge Louis Walsh has claimed James has ruined his chance of a pop career following his recent controversies, which also included slagging off the some of the show's former acts.
"Has he blown it? Yes, he has. I don’t know if he’ll get back (on track) and I don’t care," he told The Sunday People.
"I think James has damaged his own reputation with his stupidness, but not the show’s."
Also on HuffPost:
Suggested For You
SUBSCRIBE AND FOLLOW
Get top stories and blog posts emailed to me each day. Newsletters may offer personalized content or advertisements.Learn more