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What's the first thing that springs to mind when you think of Post Malone?

Is it his music? His whacky fashion sense? Or his heavy abundance of tattoos?

It's probably the latter. The rapper is notorious for his heavily tattooed appearance but it turns out that there's a lot more meaning behind his bizarre appearance.

Keep scrolling to find out why Post has chosen to ink his face, and see what he looks like tattoo-free...

You'll be shocked.

It's been one hell of a decade for Post Malone...

Post, whose real name is Austin Richard Post, is a rapper who specializes in genres such as hip-hop, R&B, pop, and rock.

The New York-born rapper has shot up to unprecedented levels of fame in the last few years.

Post released his debut album, August 26th back in 2016, but didn't make it into the charts until the release of his 2017 single, "Rockstar."

His music has been a roaring success...

As of this year alone, Post has sold over sixty million records just here in the U.S.

He's won a handful of awards, too...

The rapper has achieved 2 American Music Awards, a Billboard Music Award, and an MTV Video Music Award, which is a pretty impressive feat considering he only rose to fame 2 years ago.

So, it's needless to say...

Post Malone is one of the biggest names in music of 2019.

But, when he isn't known for his music...

He's known for something else entirely.

Post has a rather distinct style...

The rapper's "quirky" dress sense has made him, not only one of the most successful musicians of the year, but the most recognized.

And it isn't difficult to see why...

His heavily tattooed face and body, his long hair, which is sometimes transformed into a mullet, and eccentric dress sense are all to thank for this.

Post is literally covered...

From his head to his toes in tattoos.

And his face is no exception to his love of ink...

Last year, he got the words "Always" and "Tired" tattooed under his eyes. That's one way to cover the bags, I suppose...

His bizarre choice of ink sparked a lot of controversy...

Though many found that they could relate to Post's "always tired" eyes.

His ink turned him into somewhat of a meme...

Because, we too, are "always tired."

And his explanation for the puzzling words was nothing short of fantastic...

“I tried to do something that’s relatively the same length of letters," Malone told Tim Westwood during London’s Wireless Festival last weekend. “I guess ‘always’ is more letters than ‘tired,’ but I was tired so I didn’t realize."

They seem to be working well for him...

Because Post just doesn't seem to be stopping with the face tats.

Here's his most recent addition...

Now that must have been painful...

A lot of people are left baffled by Post's choice to cover his face in this way...

But surely there must be a reason behind all of this?

Post recently opened up in an interview with GQ...

He adorned the cover of the GQ Spring/Summer issue and he explained that his tattoos are, in fact, a defensive strategy.

He feels that he is ugly...

He explained, "I'm an ugly-ass mother******. It does maybe come from a place of insecurity, to where I don't like how I look, so I'm going to put something cool on there so I can look at myself and say, 'You look cool, kid,' and have a modicum of self-confidence when it comes to my appearance."

This isn't the first time that Post has spoken of his insecurities...

Back in 2018, he echoed his feelings of insecurities in a chat with Tim Westwood TV about the reason behind the facial tats. He said, "It's alright, I got a face for radio anyways, so I figured, why not? Anything to p**s my mom off." Fair enough!

It is actually quite sad that Post has these insecurities...

But it goes to show that no matter how successful you can be, insecurities always lie within anyone. Keep scrolling to see what Post would look like without tatts. Prepared to be mindblown!