The Surprising Way Kelly Clarkson Is Reinventing Herself Amid Divorce

Kelly Clarkson filed for divorce from Brandon Blackstock in June 2020, but it wasn't until September 2021 that the singer became legally single after frustrating legal battles — battles that are still ongoing in a financial capacity. Despite getting married in 2013 with an agreed-upon prenup, Blackstock wanted to contest the situation in hopes of holding onto their ranch in Montana, according to TMZ.

Clarkson has agreed to give her ex 5% of the ranch property, even though she is its sole owner. The talk show host has primary custody of their two children, River and Remington, but is making sure that they, as well as Blackstock's two children from a previous marriage, are not being forgotten in the messy chaos of the divorce. She told Extra, "We have a lot of help as far as therapists or child psychologists 'cause we want to do it right ... Everyone's sad and it's okay to be sad."

The complex emotions arising as the divorce (hopefully) begins to wind down — are also attributing to a more positive outlook for Clarkson. She is taking legal steps to change her image in an unexpected way and get back to working on the next chapter for her personal life and career.

Kelly Clarkson is changing her name

Kelly Clarkson is dropping the "Clarkson” in her name. According to Us Weekly, the "American Idol" winner filed to legally change her name on February 14. She wishes to use her first and middle names and go by Kelly Brianne. As for the reason behind the legal change, she wrote, "My new name more fully reflects who I am."

Of course, Clarkson is all about being her authentic self — even if it's tough. The singer opened up during an episode of Mayim Bialik's podcast — "Mayim Bialik's Breakdown" — in June 2021, explaining, "I think the biggest thing for me in my whole career is, just being me has been really hard." She spoke to the host from her home with no makeup on, hair in braids, and wearing a ball cap — a look she acknowledges that no manager would ever approve of for a public appearance. The micromanaging and fixation on what her image should be throughout her career is what Clarkson considers "the hardest challenge ... with mental health." Ironically, Clarkson's candid personality is what fans love about her the most. 

So maybe taking back ownership of her name could be a freeing moment for the star, especially as it seemingly detaches her from the negativity surrounding the end of her marriage. Whatever the change may be, Clarkson is always authentic, and that doesn't seem like it will change anytime soon.