But on the eve of the big show, the young singer has earned another dubious honor — worst celebrity role model for children.
In a poll conducted this week by the UK-based company Vouchercloud, 2,287 British parents were asked which celebrities they “would hate for [their] children to idolise.” When provided with a list of celebrities, more than three quarters of respondents (78 percent), all of whom have at least one child under the age of 10, chose Cyrus as the star they’d least want their child to emulate, reports the Daily Mail.
Cyrus led the the list of female celebrities by a large margin; rapper Nicki Minaj came in second with 54 percent, while reality TV queen Kim Kardashian landed in third with 43 percent. Actress Kristen Stewart (36 percent) and pop star Rihanna (34 percent) rounded out the Top 5 worst female celebrity role models.
The competition was closer among male celebrities, with infamous VMA-speech-interrupter Kanye West topping the list at 56 percent. Following right on West’s heels is Justin Bieber at 55 percent; Bieber also ranked as the second-least-liked celebrity in another public opinion poll released earlier this month.
Rounding out the list of poor male role models was former One Direction member Zayn Malik (41 percent), actor and occasional performance artist Shia LaBeouf (38 percent) and British reality star Joey Essex (25 percent).
“It’s no surprise that parents are worried about celebrity influence on their children, particularly when you look at the likes of Miley Cyrus,” Vouchercloud head of operations Chris Johnson told the Daily Mail. “She started out as the perfect teen idol in Hannah Montana and then when she reached a certain age, she decided to rid herself of the clean-teen image.”
“Parents tend to have high hopes for their children and it’s typically not a parent’s dream for them to prance around with not a lot of clothes on, partying their lives away,” Johnson added.
When asked which celebrities they’d most like their children to look up to, 34 percent chose the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton, while British singer/songwriter Ed Sheeran topped the list of male celebrities with 41 percent.
The Video Music Awards air Sunday night at 9 p.m. Eastern on MTV.