Boy George stopped getting tattoos on his head when he gave up drinking.

The 'Do You Really Want to Hurt Me' singer has a number of religious symbols tattooed on the top of his head but realised when he first got clean of drink and drugs five years ago he didn't want to complete his plan of covering his entire head with inkings.

He said: ''My head was shaved when I had the tattoos done and I was intending to tattoo my whole head, then I just thought, no. It's too painful.

''When I stopped drinking I lost the desire to be tattooed on the head. The top one I had done in Denver when I was quite drunk after a night in a club, 'Oh yeah, you can tattoo my head, come on, let's go back to your tattoo parlour'.''

Describing the designs he has and what they mean, he added: ''I have a Star of David on top of my head, a lotus flower and a cross. It's kind of like all the religions. Its quasi religious ... [But] I'm a Buddhist, a practicing Buddhist.''

George - real name George O'Dowd - added his new clean-living lifestyle is behind his current comeback, which is seeing him release his first new solo album in 18 years, 'This Is What I Do'.

He added to the UK's Radio 2: ''Sobriety is a big part of it, you know getting new management, putting a new team around me and kind of just wanting to do things properly for a while, I've been out of the loop in the process of making an album and going on tour. The question I get asked most is what do you do now, because if you're not on TV people just presume you're at home looking at old videos of yourself, eating grapes.''