Behind the Song: “Made You Look” by Meghan Trainor

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

Meghan Trainor channels confidence into her hit, “Made You Look.” Akin to “All About That Bass,” Trainor’s body-positive debut single that launched her into superstardom, “Made You Look” follows this same idea, but from her perspective as a new mom.

As the second single from 2022 album, Takin’ It Back, “Made You Look” became her first top 30 hit since 2016 singles “No” and “Me Too.” It was also a top 10 hit in countries across the globe and launched a TikTok dance craze, garnering celebrity fans including actor Kevin Bacon, who recreated the dance with his 30-year-old daughter, Sosie Bacon. Here, we explore the meaning behind “Made You Look.”

Meaning Behind the Song

Trainor gave birth to her first child, son Riley, via C-section in February 2021. “Made You Look” is inspired by an assignment Trainor’s therapist gave her post-pregnancy to look at herself completely naked in the mirror for five minutes every day, “which is much harder than you think,” Trainor admits to Genius. The singer says she was “shaking” the first time she did it. But, by the third time, she felt more confident in herself. Trainor adds that she “always struggles with my body,” but felt even more self-conscious after having a C-section. “I’ve been learning to love this new body,” she says.

Despite her insecurities, she says that her husband, Spy Kids actor Daryl Sabara, thinks she’s most beautiful when she’s sans makeup and in her natural element at home. The song’s title came from how in awe he is of her six years into the relationship. “I still make you look, to this day. It’s been six years with you and you’re like ‘damn’ even more than ever. So in the shower, butt naked, I wrote this song being like, ‘I wish I felt how he feels when he sees me.’ I want to feel those feelings, just like ‘All About That Bass’ that’s what ‘Made You Look’ is, but 2022,” she explains.

Trainor pitched the line I’ll make you double take / Soon as I walk away / Call up your chiropractor just in case your neck break to co-writer Sean Douglas, joking how her husband has to crane his neck to watch her walk out of the room. Producer Federico Vindver later incorporated the horns, which give the song a doo-wop sound. “Yes I’m a mother, yes I just gave birth, but I have never looked so good in my life,” she responds to the lyrics ‘Cause I’m ’bout to make a scene, double up that sunscreen.

I could have my Gucci on (Gucci on)
I could wear my Louis Vuitton
But even with nothin’ on
Bet I made you look (I made you look)
Yeah, I look good in my Versace dress (take it off)
But I’m hotter when my morning hair’s a mess
‘Cause even with my hoodie on
Bet I made you look (I made you look)

The chorus is where she gets particularly personal, as the references to Gucci and Louis Vuitton are a nod to real comments she’s heard from people in the music industry. Trainor’s been told that she needs to put on a Gucci dress and get her nails done, in addition to suggesting that she dress head to toe in Prada when going to the airport in an effort to “call paparazzi so that they see you in those fancy clothes,” the singer describes. “And I go ‘well that sounds like a nightmare, I prefer my hoodie,'” which she incorporates into the lyrics ’cause even with my hoodie on / Bet I made you look

Though it’s only a few words, the line Ooh, tell me what you / What you / What you gon’ do holds a lot of meaning for the singer, inspired by how her husband goes above and beyond to show his affection.

“‘What are you going to do to get this?’ My husband is the king of that,” she explains of the lyric, adding that making her breakfast every morning and holding the door for her are some of the ways he makes her feel special. “Every person on earth should be treated like that…I like to be really confident and sing about being confident and then I like to put it on them and be like ‘but you still need to treat me like a queen, what are you going to do for me?'”

Ultimately, the song is meant to be an anthem for women to embrace their beauty and confidence while continuing Trainor’s theme of self-love in her music. “All my ladies if you agree with this emotion and these feelings, then this is your bop. This is for you,” she professes. “[The fans are] going to learn to love themselves, they’re going to cry, they’re going to work through years of trauma with me. And I’m just like a friend, just a buddy out here that’s reaching out my hand.”

Photo: Ryan Trainor / BB Gun Press

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