Zendaya says she dropped her publicist over racially insensitive comment

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Zendaya recalls a remark made that ultimately led to her parting ways with her publicist.

"I didn't like my hair and makeup one time on a photo shoot, and my publicist told me, 'You should just be happy with it. They haven't had a black girl on the cover since forever,'" the 19-year-old actress tells Cosmopolitan magazine. "She's no longer my publicist."

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Zendaya -- who made headlines in 2015 after calling out Fashion Police's Giuliana Rancic for saying her dreadlocks at the Oscars looked like they smelled of "patchouli and weed" -- also says that her decision to return to her Disney Channel show, K.C. Undercover, was largely in part to bringing diversity to the channel. "The only way I was going to come back to the Disney Channel was if I was in a position of more power. One thing that is really important to me is diversity on the channel," she says. "It's hard as a young person of a different ethnicity or background to look at the TV and not see anyone who looks like you. Representation is very important."

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Zendaya says she dropped her publicist over racially insensitive comment
SHAKE IT UP - 'Give It Up' - 'Shake It Up, Chicago!' is holding a dance marathon to raise money for charity and Rocky is quick to sign up to support the local senior center. CeCe, on the other hand, isn't thrilled with the idea of helping unappreciative senior citizens like Mrs. Locassio (played by Renee Taylor), but quickly jumps on board when she finds out the winners will also get a spotlight dance on the show. In order to prepare for the marathon, CeCe purchases some energy drinks to give them more pep in their step, but when Flynn gets a hold of the sugary concoctions, the girls are up all night with him and have to muster up the energy to compete the next day, in a new episode of 'Shake It Up,' SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 21 (8:30-9:00 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney Channel. (Photo by Adam Larkey/Disney Channel via Getty Images) ZENDAYA COLEMAN
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - AUGUST 01: Actresses Bella Thorne (L) and Zendaya Coleman attend the Disney ABC Television Group's Summer TCA party at the Beverly Hilton on August 1, 2010 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)
SHAKE IT UP - 'Party It Up' - CeCe and Rocky sneak out to attend one of Gary's infamous house parties, but are embarrassed to discover he invited them there to work as waitresses. When Rocky overhears Gary introducing his manager, she and CeCe decide to put on a dance performance mid-party in hopes that he'll want to represent them. Meanwhile, Ty and Deuce arrive to babysit Flynn so CeCe and Rocky can sneak out, but then must try to hide from Georgia when she gets off work early, in a new episode of 'Shake It Up,' SUNDAY, DECEMBER 12 (8:30-9:00 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney Channel. (Photo by Eric McCandless/Disney Channel via Getty Images) BELLA THORNE, ZENDAYA
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - AUGUST 28: Actress Zendaya Coleman arrives at the screening of Disney's 'Tinker Bell And The Great Fairy Rescue' on August 28, 2010 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Valerie Macon/Getty Images)
Zendaya Coleman attends AEG's Season of Giving Hosts Starlight Children's Foundation and Disney On Ice Event at L.A. LIVE on December 15, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Anna Webber/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 19: Zendaya Coleman arrives to the Pastry & Barbie So In Style Shoe Collection Launch Party at SLS Hotel in Los Angeles, California on May 19, 2011. (Photo by Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images)
SHAKE IT UP - 'Whodunit Up?' - When a phantom threatens to shut down 'Shake It Up, Chicago,' CeCe, Rocky, Gunther and Tinka try to unmask the culprit before any damage is done, , in a new episode of 'Shake It Up,' SUNDAY, APRIL 15 (8:30-9:00 p.m., ET/PT) on Disney Channel. (Photo by Bruce Birmelin/Disney Channel via Getty images) BELLA THORNE, ZENDAYA
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 22: Actress Zendaya arrives at the World Premiere of Disney's 'John Carter' held at Regal Cinemas L.A. Live on February 22, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Barry King/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 10: Zendaya is sighted at The Grove on July 10, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Noel Vasquez/FilmMagic)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - SEPTEMBER 27: Actress Zendaya arrives at the Teen Vogue's 10th Anniversary Annual Young Hollywood Party on September 27, 2012 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - OCTOBER 20: Actress/singer Zendaya attends Bella Thorne's Quinceanera in honor of her 15th Birthday presented by Hallmark Gold Crown and Text Bands on October 20, 2012 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 23: Actress Zendaya Coleman arrives at Nickelodeon's 26th Annual Kids' Choice Awards at USC Galen Center on March 23, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - JULY 15: Actress/recording artist Zendaya attends her Planet Hollywood hand print ceremony at Planet Hollywood Times Square on July 15, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Desiree Navarro/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 26: Actress Zendaya sings the national anthem before the MLB game between the Cincinnatti Reds and Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium at Dodger Stadium on July 26, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Mark Sullivan/WireImage)
SANTA MONICA, CA - OCTOBER 26: Actress Zendaya attends Keep A Child Alive's 20th Annual Dream Halloween - Arrivals at Barker Hangar on October 26, 2013 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic)
SAN JOSE, CA - DECEMBER 03: Zendaya performs at the 99.7 (NOW!) Triple Ho Show 4.0 at SAP Center on December 3, 2013 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Steve Jennings/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 26: Zendaya Coleman arrivals at the 56th GRAMMY Awards on January 26, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - MARCH 02: Actress and singer Zendaya arrives at the Fame & Philanthropy Post-Oscar Party benefiting The Community Inspiring Today's Youth, Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project, The Jenesse Center and The Compound Foundation at The Vineyard on March 2, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Amanda Edwards/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 13: Actress Zendaya attends the 2014 MTV Movie Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on April 13, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 26: Zendaya arrives at the Disney Channel Presents 2014 Radio Disney Music Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on April 26, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 29: Zendaya attends the 'BET AWARDS' 14 held at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on June 29, 2014 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Tommaso Boddi/WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - SEPTEMBER 26: Singer/actress Zendaya attends the 12th Annual Teen Vogue Young Hollywood Party with Emporio Armani on September 26, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images for Teen Vogue)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - OCTOBER 06: Actress/singer Zendaya attends the premiere of Disney's 'Alexander and The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day' at the El Capitan Theatre on October 6, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - OCTOBER 08: Actress Zendaya attends the 2014 Princess Grace Awards Gala with presenting sponsor Christian Dior Couture at the Beverly Wilshire Four Seasons Hotel on October 8, 2014 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - NOVEMBER 08: Actress Zendaya attends the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences' 2014 Governors Awards at The Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland Center on November 8, 2014 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 15: Actress Zendaya attends the 2014 Nickelodeon HALO Awards at Pier 36 on November 15, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Stewart/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 23: Actress Zendaya Coleman arrives at the 2014 American Music Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on November 23, 2014 in Los Angeles, California.(Photo by Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage)
CULVER CITY, CA - FEBRUARY 05: Singer/actress Zendaya Coleman arrives at Smashbox Studios Grand Re-Opening Party at Smashbox Studios on February 5, 2015 in Culver City, California. (Photo by Barry King/GettyImages)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 08: Zendaya attends The 57th Annual GRAMMY Awards at the STAPLES Center on February 8, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Dan MacMedan/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 12: Zendaya attends the Go Red For Women Red Dress Collection 2015 presented by Macy's fashion show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Fall 2015 at Lincoln Center on February 12, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Go Red)
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 19: Actress Zendaya attends the 2nd Annual unite4:humanity presented by ALCATEL ONETOUCH at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on February 19, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for Variety)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 22: Zendaya arrives at the 87th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood & Highland Center on February 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Dan MacMedan/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 29: Actress Zendaya attends the 2015 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcasted live on NBC from The Shrine Auditorium on March 29, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 04: Zendaya attends the 'China: Through The Looking Glass' Costume Institute Benefit Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 4, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/FilmMagic)
MALIBU, CA - JUNE 14: Actress Zendaya arrives at the Children Mending Heart's 7th Annual Empathy Rocks Fundraiser on June 14, 2015 in Malibu, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 28: Actress Zendaya attends the 2015 BET Awards on June 28, 2015 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Vincent Sandoval/WireImage)
ATLANTIC CITY, NJ - SEPTEMBER 13: Singer Zendaya attends the 2016 Miss America Competition at Boardwalk Hall Arena on September 13, 2015 in Atlantic City, New Jersey. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for dcp)
LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 26: Actress/singer Zendaya Coleman attends the Barbie Rock 'N Royals Concert Experience at the Hollywood Palladium on September 26, 2015 in Los Angeles, California.(Photo by Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage)
PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 03: Zendaya attends the Vivienne Westwood show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2016 on October 3, 2015 in Paris, France. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 22: Singer/actress Zendaya arrives at the 2015 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on November 22, 2015 in Los Angeles, California.(Photo by Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage)
SANTA MONICA, CA - DECEMBER 10: Recording artist Zendaya attends the 2nd Annual Diamond Ball hosted by Rihanna and The Clara Lionel Foundation at The Barker Hanger on December 10, 2015 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by Todd Williamson/Getty Images)
SANTA MONICA, CA - DECEMBER 10: Recording artist Zendaya attends the 2nd Annual Diamond Ball hosted by Rihanna and The Clara Lionel Foundation at The Barker Hanger on December 10, 2015 in Santa Monica, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - JANUARY 10: Actress/singer Zendaya attends the 73rd Annual Golden Globe Awards held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on January 10, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
CULVER CITY, CA - JANUARY 09: Actress/singer Zendaya attends the Art of Elysium 2016 HEAVEN Gala presented by Vivienne Westwood & Andreas Kronthaler at 3LABS on January 9, 2016 in Culver City, California.(Photo by Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage)
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In February, the TV star made headlines when she showed up with O'Dell Beckham Jr. -- who was recently partying with Khloe Kardashian -- to Universal Music Group's GRAMMY Awards after-party, and inevitably sparked romance rumors. Zendaya later shot down reports that she was dating the NFL pro, and tells Cosmo that she's looking for love rather than casual hookups.

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"Me, personally? I would much rather be in love and have the full experience with the person I'm doing that with," she explains. "Everyone deserves to be in love."

That being said, Zendaya adds that she doesn't judge other people's choices. "It's different from when you're with someone you don't really know," she says. "But as long as you protect yourself and get tested periodically, then by all means, go ahead and do what you've got to do!"

MORE: Zendaya Slams Julie Klausner After Comedian Publicly Shames Her Weight -- 'You Really Wanna Be Next?'

When Zendaya chatted with ET while on the set of her Disney series, she was candid about the influence she has as a rising star. "I think it would be more intimidating if I felt like I was a role-model, a 'role model,' but I feel like I'm a real model -- in the words of Tupac Shakur," she shared. "Because I feel like I'm not trying to pretend to be a good kid, or I'm not trying to pretend to be something that I'm not. Honestly this is who I am. As long as I am able to get some inspiration to them -- then I've done my job."

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