|“||I have to fight to keep my image really me…. I rejected some gorgeous publicity shots because they just didn’t look like me. I won’t wear skanky clothes that show my booty, my belly or my boobs. I have a great body.||”|
|—Avril Lavigne, MTV|
When Lavigne first gained publicity, she was known for her tomboyish style, in particular her necktie and tank-top combinations. She preferred baggy clothes, skater shoes or Converses, wristbands, and sometimes shoelaces wrapped around her fingers. During photo shoots, instead of wearing “glittery get-ups”, she preferred wearing “old, crumpled T’s”. In response to her fashion and musical influences, the media would call her the “pop punk princess“. Press and fans regarded her as the “anti-Britney”, in part because of her less-commercial and “real” image, but also because she was noticeably headstrong. “I’m not made up and I’m not being told what to say and how to act, so they have to call me the anti-Britney, which I’m not.” By November 2002, however, Lavigne stopped wearing ties, claiming she felt she was “wearing a costume”. Lavigne made a conscious effort to keep her music, and not her image, at the forefront of her career. “I’m just saying, I don’t want to sell sex. I feel that’s sort of lame and low. I’ve got so much more to say.”
Lavigne eventually took on a more gothic style as she began her second album, Under My Skin, trading her skating outfits for black tutus and acquiring an overall disposition of angst. During The Best Damn Thing years, Lavigne changed directions entirely, dying her hair blonde with a pink streak and wearing more feminine outfits, including “tight jeans and heels,” and modelling for magazines like Harper’s Bazaar. Lavigne defended her new style: “I don’t really regret anything. You know, the ties and the wifebeaters and all… It had its time and place. And now I’m all grown up, and I’ve moved on”. She now tries to eat healthy foods and participate in athletic activities, including yoga, street hockey, soccer, rollerblading, and surfing.
Only a few of Lavigne’s tattoos are unique to her; the rest are matching tattoos, shared with friends. Lavigne had a star tattooed on the inside of her left wrist that matched the style of the one used for her first album artwork. It was created at the same time as friend and musical associate Ben Moody‘s identical tattoo. In late 2004, she had a small pink heart around the letter “D” applied to her right wrist, which represented her boyfriend at the time, Deryck Whibley. Lavigne and Whibley each received matching tattoos again in March 2010, in celebration of his 30th birthday. In April, Lavigne added another tattoo on her wrist, that of a lightning bolt and the number 30, and her boyfriend, Brody Jenner, received a matching lightning bolt tattoo under his ear.
|“||Everything is always spur-of-the-moment. All of my tattoos, I decide that second and do it.||”|
|—Avril Lavigne, Inked|
Her love of tattoos, however, gained media attention in May 2010, after Lavigne and Jenner received matching tattoos of the word “fuck” on their ribs. Lavigne appeared in the June/July cover story for Inked magazine, where she discussed and showed off her tattoos, including an “Abbey Dawn” on her left forearm and an “XXV” and star on her right. Although she confirmed the “fuck” tattoo verbally in the article, calling it her “favorite word”, she had it applied after the magazine’s photo shoot. She added that she wanted to eventually get a “big-ass heart with a flag through it with a name…. I’m going to wait a few years and make sure I still want it then. I have to wait for that special someone to come back into my life.” In July 2010, Lavigne had the name “Brody” tattooed beneath her right breast.
Marriage to Deryck Whibley
Lavigne and Deryck Whibley, lead singer and guitarist for the band Sum 41, began dating when she was 19 years old, after being friends since she was 17. Only a few weeks before they met, Lavigne admitted that she was not meeting boys because her bodyguards were frightening them away. In June 2005, Whibley surprised Lavigne with a trip to Venice, including a gondola ride and a romantic picnic, and on 27 June, he proposed to her.
She initially wanted to have a “rock n’ roll, goth wedding”, but she admitted to having doubts about going against tradition. “I’ve been dreaming about my wedding day since I was a little girl. I have to wear the white dress…. People thought that I would [wear a] black wedding dress, and I would have. But at the same time, I was thinking about the wedding pictures, and I wanted to be in style. I didn’t want to be thinking, 20 years later, ‘Oh, why did I wear my hair like that?'”
The wedding was held on 15 July 2006. About 110 guests attended the wedding, which was held at a private estate in Montecito, California. Lavigne, wearing a gown designed by Vera Wang walked down the aisle with her father, Jean-Claude, to Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March”. Lavigne chose a colour theme of red and white, including red rose petals and centerpieces of distinctly coloured flowers. The wedding included cocktails for an hour before the reception and a sit-down dinner. The song “Iris”, by the Goo Goo Dolls, was played during Lavigne and Whibley’s first dance.
Seven months into their marriage, Lavigne stated that she was “the best thing that’s ever happened to him”, and suggested that she helped Whibley stay off drugs since they’d begun dating. “He doesn’t do drugs. Clearly, he used to, because he talked about it, but I wouldn’t be with someone who did, and I made that very clear to him when we first started dating. I’ve never done cocaine in my life, and I’m proud of that. I am 100 percent against drugs.” The marriage lasted a little more than three years. It was announced on 17 September 2009 that Lavigne and Whibley had split up and that divorce papers would soon follow. On 9 October 2009, Lavigne filed for divorce, releasing the statement, “I am grateful for our time together, and I am grateful and blessed for our remaining friendship.” The divorce was finalized on 16 November 2010, officially ending the marriage.