Last year, shortly after co-hosting the Country Music Awards alongside Brad Paisley, singer Carrie Underwood suffered an accident at her home that left her hospitalized.
The "Before He Cheats" singer "took a hard fall on some steps outside her home," and while she didn't sustain any life-threatening injuries, she did suffer multiple serious injuries, including a broken wrist that required surgery to fix, abrasions and cuts.
Although Underwood wasn't spotted in public for a while after the unfortunate incident, she still kept her fans updated through social media.
Surgery and facial scars
"Had surgery on my wrist yesterday & all went well...even though I'll be setting off airport metal detectors from now on," she tweeted a few days after the accident. "I'm so thankful for the doctors, nurses, family & friends who've been taking such great care of me."
I just wanted let everyone know that I'm doing great. Had surgery on my wrist yesterday & all went well...even though I'll be setting off airport metal detectors from now on...I'm so thankful for the doctors, nurses, family & friends who've been taking such great care of me.— Carrie Underwood (@carrieunderwood) November 15, 2017
Although Underwood was on the path to quick recovery, it took a few months before she posted a photo of her face for the world to see, and even then, she strategically hid her injuries behind a scarf.
It turns out that in addition to the broken wrist, Underwood sustained some severe injuries to her face and shared some of the details in an email to her fan club members.
"There is also another part of the story that I haven't been ready to talk about since I have still been living it and there has been much uncertainty as to how things will end up," she wrote in the note. "It's crazy how a freak random accident can change your life. In addition to breaking my wrist, I somehow managed to injure my face as well. I'll spare you the gruesome details, but when I came out of surgery the night of my fall, the doctor told Mike that he had put between 40 and 50 stitches in. I am determined to make 2018 amazing and I want to share things with you along the way. And when I am ready to get in front of a camera, I want you all to understand why I might look a bit different."
Now, nearly a year after the "freak random accident," Underwood shared a selfie that she took in between breaks from filming the music video for her recent single "Love Wins."
While the singer never mentioned the barely-visible scar on her upper lip, people were quick to take to the comments to share their opinion about her appearance.
Unfortunately, the critics were out in full force and called Underwood out for being "fake," "insulting," "having lip injections that "are too much," and keeping quiet about the accident for too long.
"She has definitely changed over the years," wrote one user. "Her not revealing herself after her injury was not a good move. It would have humanized her to be open about it. She gave off the wrong impression to young girls."
"What a fake Carrie Underwood," chimed in another.
"There's nothing wrong with her face and she's acting like she had total surgery to fix something. It's Annoying AF!" read one comment while another added, "I'm shooketh ðŸ˜¦over the lipðŸ’‹ injections are too much. I looked up your IMAGE Before & Now & I didn't realize all the upgrades you've had. Please Don't go overboard. I love humble gracious natural beautiful Carrie."
Some people wrote that Underwood could use the money she made "from fans" to "pay for plastic surgery and move on."
"The more she carries on about her face, the more she proves to me how superficial she is and I dislike her more and more," said another user. "Haven't we ALL been thru more than a busted lip in life and carried on?"
"This is just insulting," read one comment. "There are 100s of women disfigured from burns, scars, birth defects, etc and your [sic] whiny about something no one can notice ? I lost serious respecr [sic] for you today."
"It definitely was not a choice."
This type of criticism is exactly what Underwood was worried about when she needed to get treatment to fix her face. She was concerned that people who didn't know the story, would assume she got plastic surgery or lip fillers to make herself look a certain way.
"My biggest worry at the time was that if I said nothing, later on people would pick apart ... and wonder, 'What has she done to herself electively?' It definitely was not a choice," the "Cry Pretty" singer told Ellen DeGeneres.
Luckily for Underwood, she has plenty of supporters who were willing to come to her defense in the comments underneath the Instagram photo.
"It actually breaks my heart that people are being so mean and hurtful to her."
"You are still beautiful scar or no scar," wrote one fan. Another added, "You are still beautiful inside and out . I have scares also it part of life . I call it my battle wounds of life."
One Instagram user admitted that "it actually breaks my heart that people are being so mean and hurtful to her. She fell and had SERIOUS injuries."
They continued, "She had damage to her lips, so she had surgery and had stitches. apparently she had to get them fixed. No one knows what it looked like after the fall so chill out. It's not like she went out and decided to get Botox and if she did, SO WHAT. SHE CAN DO WHAT SHE WANTS ANYWAYS."
While one critic put the American Idol alum in the hot seat for giving off the "wrong impression to young girls," one mom thinks the opposite. She thanked the singer for not hiding the scar even after being ridiculed for it.
"I want to thank you for posting it," she wrote. "My 5 year old daughter had a traumatic facial injury last Christmas which resulted in 12 stitches that started between her eyebrows, down the side of her nose and onto her cheek. When she first saw herself in the mirror she was afraid because she felt she looked 'like a bad guy'. She is a big fan of yours, and was excited to see you two have 'matching scars'. Thanks for making my girl not feel so alone."
The negative criticism hasn't stopped the expecting mom from sharing more photos of herself on social media. A few days ago, she uploaded a photo taken while she rehearsed for the American Music Awards on Tuesday.