Emilia Clarke Struggled to Look at Herself After Brain Aneurysm Surgeries

The actress opened up about her struggles with self-esteem.

emilia clarke
Image via Getty
emilia clarke

As Game of Thrones winds down, star Emilia Clarke has continued to open up about the brain anuerysms that she suffered early in the run of the hit show. Clarke, who collapsed in 2011 from a subarachnoid haemorrhage and underwent several surgeries, admitted to Stylist that she could barely bring herself to look in the mirrror following her ordeal.

"After my operations I didn't want to look at my own face. I was so full of drugs from being in the hospital that I had a lot of water retention, and one half of my face was quite swollen,” she told the beauty magazine. “I felt so deeply unattractive. What I can see now is that I could see the pain behind my eyes. And no amount of anything can cover that.”

Clarke said that time and working on herself allowed her to come to terms with the changes and that she has boosted her self-esteem. “[Now] I always err on the side of wearing less make-up. My face didn’t change, but my feelings about myself changed,” she said. “When you can look at yourself in the eyes and feel OK with what’s looking back at you, then what more do you need?”


She also told Stylist she's fine with the idea that she may never look as good in her day-to-day life as she does playing Daenerys. "I had the best professionals in the world doing my hair and make-up and costumes, and there is really not much I can do about it," she said, revealing that Danerys' hairstyle is seven people's worth of hair and comes down to her butt when it's unbraided. "I can’t ever get my hair to look like Daenerys’. It’s a heartbreak, but I’ve had to come to terms with that."

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