Miley Cyrus says she changed her look because she felt 'sexualized,' quotes the 'wise Justin Bieber'

Miley Cyrus has her reasons as to why she gave herself what some fans may call a "makeunder" just before the release of her hit single, "Malibu."

"It became something that was expected of me. I didn't want to show up to photo shoots and be the girl who would get my t*ts out and stick out my tongue," the 24-year-old singer tells the August issue of Harper's Bazaar of her former over-the-top persona. "In the beginning, it was kind of like saying, 'F**k you. Girls should be able to have this freedom or whatever.' But it got to a point where I did feel sexualized."

"Like, people will say, 'You've changed.' And that's supposed to be derogatory," she adds of her new image. "But you are supposed to change all the time."

@harpersbazaarus on newsstands across the country July 25th!!!!! Loooooove!

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While Cyrus, who has since rekindled her romance with Liam Hemsworth, is embracing this period in her life, she doesn't seem to regret that phase of her career, though it was met with some criticism. "People have known me since I was so young, they think they know me," the former Hannah Montana star notes. "I heard so many comments like, 'We just want Miley back.' But you can't tell me who that is. I'm right here."

25 PHOTOS
Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth through the years
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Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth through the years
LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 10: Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus attend the premiere of Disney And Marvel's 'Thor: Ragnarok' on October 10, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Todd Williamson/Getty Images)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - OCTOBER 10: Actor Liam Hemsworth (L) and Miley Cyrus at The World Premiere of Marvel Studios' 'Thor: Ragnarok' at the El Capitan Theatre on October 10, 2017 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Rich Polk/Getty Images for Disney)
Actor Liam Hemsworth, from left, singer Miley Cyrus, former professional tennis player John McEnroe, and singer-songwriter Patty Smyth sit at a table during the Robin Hood Foundation's 'Love and Leadership' benefit in New York, U.S., on Monday, May 15, 2017. For 29 years,�Robin�Hood�has worked to get help to New York City's poor by burrowing deep into the pockets of its most affluent. Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg via Getty Images
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 16: Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus leave Catch on September 15, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by James Devaney/GC Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 15: Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth seen out in Manhattan on September 15, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Robert Kamau/GC Images)
BYRON BAY, NSW - APRIL 29: Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus seen on April 29, 2016 in Byron Bay, Australia. (Photo by Matrix/GC Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - AUGUST 08: Actress Miley Cyrus and actor Liam Hemsworth attend the premiere of Relativity Media's 'Paranoia' at the DGA Theater on August 8, 2013 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 16: Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth are seen on Melrose Blvd. on July 16, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by JB Lacroix/WireImage)
CENTURY CITY, CA - JUNE 27: (EXCLUSIVE ACCESS SPECIAL RATES APPLY) Actor Liam Hemsworth and singer Miley Cyrus pose during Australians In Film Awards & Benefit Dinner at InterContinental Hotel on June 27, 2012 in Century City, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images for AIF)
Actor Liam Hemsworth kisses actress Miley Cyrus at their table at the Muhammad Ali's Celebrity Fight Night XVIII on March 24, 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona. Fight Night supports the fight against Parkinson's disease and this year also celebrates Ali's 70th birthday. AFP PHOTO / Robyn BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - MARCH 24: Actress/singer Miley Cyrus (L) and actor Liam Hemsworth in the audience during Muhammad Ali's Celebrity Fight Night XVIII held at JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa on March 24, 2012 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images for CFN)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 12: Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus attends 'The Hunger Games' Los Angeles Premiere on March 12, 2012 in Los Angeles, United States. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Actor Liam Hemsworth and singer Miley Cyrus arrive at the 2012 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Graydon Carter at Sunset Tower on February 26, 2012 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Mark Sullivan/WireImage)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Actor Liam Hemsworth and actress/singer Miley Cyrus attend the 2012 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Graydon Carter at Sunset Tower on February 26, 2012 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/VF12/Getty Images for Vanity Fair)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - FEBRUARY 26: Singer Miley Cyrus (L) and actor Liam Hemsworth attend the 20th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Academy Awards Viewing Party at The City of West Hollywood Park on February 26, 2012 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 11: Actor Liam Hemsworth and Actress Miley Cyrus attends People's Choice Awards 2012 at Nokia Theatre LA Live on January 11, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for PCA)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 11: Actress Miley Cyrus (L) and Liam Hemsworth arrive at the 2012 People's Choice Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on January 11, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Michael Buckner/Getty Images for PCA)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 11: Singer/actress Miley Cyrus and actor Liam Hemsworth arrive at the 2012 People's Choice Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on January 11, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for PCA)
LOS ANGELES, CA - DECEMBER 11: Actor Liam Hemsworth and actress/singer Miley Cyrus arrive at the 2011 CNN Heroes All-Star Tribute at The Shrine Auditorium on December 11, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic)
SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 20: (EUROPE AND AUSTRALASIA OUT) American singer and actress, Miley Cyrus, with her Australian actor boyfriend Liam Hemsworth, shopping on Oxford Street, Paddington in Sydney, ahead of her Australian concert tour. (Photo by Justin Lloyd/Newspix/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 21: Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth arrive at LAX airport on June 21, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jean Baptiste Lacroix/WireImage)
LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 15: Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth sighting on April 15, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Gustavo Munoz/BuzzFoto/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD - MARCH 25: Actress Miley Cyrus and actor Liam Hemsworth arrive at the Los Angeles Premiere 'The Last Song' at ArcLight Cinemas on March 25, 2010 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)
WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - MARCH 07: *EXCLUSIVE ACCESS, PREMIUM RATES APPLY* Liam Hemsworth and Miley Cyrus attend the 18th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Academy Award Party at Pacific Design Center on March 7, 2010 in West Hollywood, California. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images)
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Cyrus also compares her "Wrecking Ball" days to her time as child star on the Disney Channel. "People were so shocked by some of the things that I did," she says, referring to her twerking, tongue-wagging moments. "It should be more shocking that when I was 11 or 12, I was put in full hair and makeup, a wig, and told what to wear by a group of mostly older men."

In addition to switching up her style, Cyrus also recently declared that she's no longer smoking marijuana. "Just for now," she clarifies. "To quote the wise Justin Bieber, 'Never say never.' But right now I want to be clear."

It appears her main goal at this phase in her career is to be a "f**king role model" no matter what she's wearing. "Who gives a s**t? Because I got my t*ts out before doesn't make me less of a role model," she exclaims. "I think I show people that they can be themselves. I also think something that has been important for me, in this next little, like, transition phase of my career is that I don't give a f**k about being cool. I just want to be myself."

41 PHOTOS
Miley Cyrus out and about
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Miley Cyrus out and about
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 16: Miley Cyrus speaks on SiriusXM's SiriusXM Hits 1 Channel at SiriusXM Studios on May 16, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for SiriusXM)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 16: Miley Cyrus poses at SiriusXM Studios on May 16, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for SiriusXM)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 16: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Miley Cyrus visits 'The Elvis Duran Z100 Morning Show' at Z100 Studio on May 16, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - MAY 15: Miley Cyrus is seen on May 15, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Alessio Botticelli/GC Images)
CARSON, CA - MAY 13: Singer Miley Cyrus performs at 102.7 KIIS FM's 2017 Wango Tango at StubHub Center on May 13, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
CARSON, CA - MAY 13: Miley Cyrus, Tish Cyrus and Noah Cyrus at 102.7 KIIS FM's 2017 Wango Tango at StubHub Center on May 13, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)
CARSON, CA - MAY 13: Miley Cyrus attends 102.7 KIIS FM's 2017 Wango Tango at StubHub Center on May 13, 2017 in Carson, California. (Photo by Rich Fury/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 12: Singer/actress Miley Cyrus Visits 'Hits 1 In Hollywood' On SiriusXM Hits 1 Channel at The SiriusXM Studios In Los Angeles on May 12, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: Singer-songwriter Miley Cyrus holds a sign reading 'I heart Noah Cyrus' while she speaks onstage at the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcast live on Turner's TBS, TNT, and truTV at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for iHeartMedia)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: (L-R) Singers-songwriters Noah Cyrus and Miley Cyrus, and Tish Cyrus attend the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcast live on Turner's TBS, TNT, and truTV at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for iHeartMedia)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: Musicians Big Sean (L) and Miley Cyrus backstage at the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcast live on Turner's TBS, TNT, and truTV at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for iHeartMedia)
INGLEWOOD, CA - MARCH 05: (L-R) Tish Cyrus and singer-songwriters Billy Ray Cyrus, Miley Cyrus and Noah Cyrus attend the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards which broadcast live on Turner's TBS, TNT, and truTV at The Forum on March 5, 2017 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for iHeartMedia)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21: Singer Miley Cyrus speaks onstage at the women's march in Los Angeles on January 21, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21: Singer Miley Cyrus attends the women's march in Los Angeles on January 21, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21: (EDITORS NOTE: Image contains profanity.) Miley Cyrus attends the Women's March Los Angeles on January 21, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Araya Diaz/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 21: (L-R) Actress Marcia Gay Harden, singer Miley Cyrus and Jane Fonda march during the Women's March on January 21, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. Tens of thousands of people took to the streets of Downtown Los Angeles for the Women's March in protest after the inauguration of President Donald Trump. Women's Marches are being held in cities around the world. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- 'Live Finale' Episode: 1118B -- Pictured: (l-r) Alicia Keys, Miley Cyrus -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- 'Live Finale' Episode: 1118A -- Pictured: Miley Cyrus -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- 'Live Finale' Episode: 1118B -- Pictured: Miley Cyrus -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- 'Live Top 10' Episode: 1116B -- Pictured: Miley Cyrus, Aaron Gibson, Ali Caldwell -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- 'Live Top 10' Episode 1116B -- Pictured: (l-r) Miley Cyrus, Dolly Parton -- (Photo by: Tyler Golden/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- 'Live Semi Finals' Episode: 1117B -- Pictured: Miley Cyrus -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- 'Live Top 10' Episode: 1116B -- Pictured: (l-r) Blake Shelton, Miley Cyrus, Adam Levine, Jane Lynch 'Hollywood Game Night', Alicia Keys -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- 'Live Top 12' Episode: 1114B -- Pictured: Miley Cyrus -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE VOICE -- '1114 Reality' -- Pictured: (l-r) Miley Cyrus, Garth Brooks -- (Photo by: Trae Patton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
FAIRFAX, VA - OCTOBER 22: Singer, songwriter, actress and philanthropist Miley Cyrus, L, takes a selfie while doing her signature tongue-out pose with GMU students Samaria Moss, 18, C, of Spottsylvania, VA, Jaide Tarwid, 18, from Wisconsin, and Zimuzo Okala, 19, of Chesapeake, VA, (blocked) as Cyrus makes a campaign visit for Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine in Northern Virginia at George Mason University on Saturday, October, 22, 2016 in Fairfax, VA. (photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
FAIRFAX, VA - OCTOBER 22: Katherine Quigley, 19, L, of Stuart's Draft, VA, poses for a picture with singer, songwriter, actress and philanthropist Miley Cyrus on the bed of Quigley's absent roommate as Cyrus makes a campaign visit for Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine in Northern Virginia at George Mason University on Saturday, October, 22, 2016 in Fairfax, VA. (photo by Jahi Chikwendiu/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - SEPTEMBER 23: Entertainer Miley Cyrus performs during her appearance with Billy Idol at the 2016 iHeartRadio Music Festival at T-Mobile Arena on September 23, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/WireImage)
LAS VEGAS, NV - SEPTEMBER 23: Singers Billy Idol (L) and Miley Cyrus perform onstage at the 2016 iHeartRadio Music Festival at T-Mobile Arena on September 23, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
LAS VEGAS, NV - SEPTEMBER 23: Recording artist Miley Cyrus poses backstage at the 2016 iHeartRadio Music Festival at T-Mobile Arena on September 23, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage)
THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 0536 -- Pictured: (l-r) Host Jimmy Fallon as Sara and musician Miley Cyrus during the 'Ew!' sketch on September 19, 2016 -- (Photo by: Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 16: Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth arrive to Catch on September 15, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by James Devaney/GC Images)
THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 0535 -- Pictured: Singer Miley Cyrus arrives on September 16, 2016 -- (Photo by: Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
THE TONIGHT SHOW STARRING JIMMY FALLON -- Episode 0535 -- Pictured: Musical guest Miley Cyrus performs with The Roots on September 16, 2016 -- (Photo by: Andrew Lipovsky/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
TODAY -- Pictured: (l-r) Anchors Savannah Guthrie and Carson Daly with Miley Cyrus on NBC's 'TODAY' show on Friday, September 16, 2016 -- (Photo by: Peter Kramer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 15: Miley Cyrus seen in SoHo September 15, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Robert Kamau/GC Images)
LATE NIGHT WITH SETH MEYERS -- Episode 424 -- Pictured: (l-r) Host Seth Meyers and Miley Cyrus during 'NBC's Forced Friends' sketch on September 22, 2016 -- (Photo by: Lloyd Bishop/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
BEVERLY HILLS, CA - SEPTEMBER 07: Miley Cyrus at the 'Crisis in Six Scenes' Press Conference at the Four Seasons Hotel on September 7, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Vera Anderson/WireImage)
THE VOICE -- Season: 11 -- Pictured: Miley Cyrus -- (Photo by: Michael Muller/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 14: Miley Cyrus is seen leaving SoHo House on June 14, 2016 in New York, New York. (Photo by Alessio Botticelli/GC Images)
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In ET's exclusive interview with Cyrus' father, Billy Ray Cyrus, the 55-year-old country crooner gushed over his daughter's decision to stay sober at this stage in her career. "She's firing off all cylinders. Her thoughts, her instincts, everything is at the top of its game," he said. "Sometimes you have to clear out the junk, and then you realize what's most important. Whatever is going on, it's working for her."

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