Nicki Minaj has branded Leigh-Anne Pinnock a "jealous clown".

Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj

The 'Super Bass' singer has lashed out at the Little Mix singer while defending Jesy Nelson amid claims her 'Boyz' collaborator had been criticised for 'blackfishing' by her former bandmate in leaked text messages.

Defending Jesy, who has been accused of darkening her skin with fake tan and changing her hair in the 'Boyz' video, Nicki slammed Leigh-Anne for seemingly turning against her former friend, accusing the 'Sweet Melody' singer of being "jealous and insecure".

She fumed on an Instagram Live with Jesy: "When you try to bring someone down because you see them continuing to try and pursue their careers, you are a f****** clown.

"Immediately that person has to wear a big red clown nose and big clown boots because you're a big f*****clown."

"There are lots of women out here in the United States that tan, get bigger lips, get all types of s*** done to themselves.

"I wear blond hair, straight blonde hair down to my feet if I want to when I want to, contacts, whatever, I do whatever the f*** I want.

"As long as you're not hurting anybody or speaking negative about anybody's race or culture, you should be able to enjoy your make-up, your body however you want to."

Nicki accused Leigh-Anne of being "jealous" of Jesy's success outside of the band.

She continued: "Sweetheart take them text messages and shove it up you're f***** a**, because when you do clown s*** I gotta treat you and talk to you like you're a clown.

"It screams insecurity, it screams that you're jealous, only jealous people do things like this and now you just look like a big jealous bozo."

Jesy stayed silent through most of the rapper's rant, but thanked Nicki for defending her, before insisting she hadn't tried to "offend" anyone with her new image.

She said: "Thank you babe, honestly that really means a lot.

"While we're on this subject I personally want to say my intention was never ever to offend people of colour with this video and my song.

"Like I said when I was a young girl this is the music that I listened to, these are the videos I watched and thought were the best.

"I just wanted to celebrate that era of music because it's what I love, my intentions were never ever to offend anyone.

"It does really hurt me that I may have offended people and hurt people's feelings by genuinely celebrating things that I love."

The 30-year-old singer insisted she wasn't wearing fake tan in the 'Boyz' video as she'd just been on holiday and though she didn't address the messages allegedly from Leigh-Anne criticising her image, she claimed her former bandmate had once asked if she was mixed race because of the way her skin reacts to the sun.

She said: "Leigh-Anne even said to me in the group 'Are you sure you're not mixed-race because you go darker than me in the sun?'"