Social media gives me the heebie-jeebies; Singer and honorary Brit Nicole Sherzinger on why she's very protective about what she 'shares' with the world and her perfect night in with pals.
Today has to go down as one of our more surreal working days at Seven Days.
We've been flown to Los Angeles to meet Hawaiian-born, Kentucky-raised Nicole Scherzinger, who's cementing her place as an honorary Brit by becoming Muller's Team GB ambassador for the 2016 Olympics.
Which means Nicole is now officially a woman who straddles two continents like a steely-thighed colossus.
Then again, you might say she's always been on a whole Scherzylicious planet of her own.
Nicole, 37, is, in the most adorable way possible, the kookiest celebrity we've ever encountered.
Before she'll set one stiletto in our hotel room, she has insisted on an insanely expensive 'glam squad' to prep her for the interview (bear in mind she's not even having a single photo taken today).
Yet it's not because she's vain or a diva, she insists, apologising when she finally arrives two hours late, looking - yep - flawless.
She said: "The thought of doing my hair and make-up myself gives me anxiety because I'm a perfectionist.
"I'm like, 'If it's not perfect, why do it?' So it's good that people do it for me as then I feel more classy. Like a lady."
And what a woman she is. Whether she's dropping gloriously random anecdotes ("My friend Prince told me I had to see Inside Out, those voices in the head are so me!") or enthusing about her ambitions ("I'm thinking bigger, I'm finding things that are rearranging my DNA!") she's so good-hearted, fun and upbeat you simply can't help but be swept along with her.
There might be a good reason for this uber-positivity, in the form of her Bulgarian tennis player boyfriend Grigor Dimitrov. Last year she described herself as "heartbroken and devastated" after splitting from Formula 1 star Lewis Hamilton, but today her eyes are shining as she sets out her new mission in life.
She said: "I'm really focusing on what I want for myself and what I want to leave behind. I don't know how long it's going to take, but when it's the real thing it doesn't matter."
We're rooting for you, Nic. And she's feeling the love from her adopted homeland of the UK.
She said: "I feel like an adopted Brit. When people tell me they're going to London, I find myself saying, 'You're going to my town'. I love that the Brits get me, they get my sense of humour and my quirky ways with words and stuff.
"Everyone is so nice and courteous and well-mannered and super-cool and fun. People get excited, I guess. One time, neither of my nail ladies were around, so I ran into a nail bar and the girls there squealed.
"I was like, 'Calm down! You're making me nervous!' That made me a bit awkward, because I was like, 'I'm just normal, chillingtrying to get my nails done'. But it's cool, it's sweet." So she's thrilled to be an ambassador for Team GB.
Nicole said: "I'm stoked about it. My good friend Julien Macdonald has created a Union Jack outfit for me.
"In the US everyone is so patriotic, so I'm all about inspiring everyone else to get behind Team GB, wear their Union Jack, have their Muller Corner yoghurt."
Of course her life means an awful lot of time spent on planes but she's well adjusted to it and just sleeps her way through the miles.
She said: "I try to run myself into the ground so I just have to fall asleep. I love being on planes. I have a day with myself. I eat all the meals, every course."
Nicole insists she has relaxed in her approach to fitness and looks, compared to giving herself a terrible time in her 20s.
She said: "I think that comes with age. When I was in my 20s, I was really strict with myself. But now I've found a balance of acceptance where I feel really fit, but I appreciate my curves.
"I don't deny myself anything. I could never do a no-carbs diet.
"I'd say to my 20-year-old self, 'What are you complaining about? Whoo, You are cute'.
"Although I really want to tone up. I want to tone up my legs more. And we're always working on our butts, right? Squats. I'm going to work so hard, my butt's gonna be so high."
She still looks incredible in her late 30s but it's down to her genetics, not Botox - along with a beauty trick or two.
She said: "It's the Filipino Hawaiian Ukrainian side. That's all. I never did any drugs, I took care of myself but yeah, I think it's just my genetics.
"I'm bringing out my own coconut oil soon. I've talked about coconut oil for years, my family used to extract it from the trees in their backyard and send it to me.
"It's great for everything, it's great for your skin and hair. You can use it as toothpaste, as deodorant. It's amazing and it smells like the greatest thing."
While she's mostly easier on herself, Nicole will suffer for her style if she feels it's worth it.
She said: "I used to, in The Pussycat Dolls. We were trained to wear whatever we had to.
"I'm a size nine shoe but if I got a pair of vintage size fives and they looked cute I'd just have to dance through it.
"I don't do that as much now but I don't mind. Honey if it's going to cinch that waist I'm like [clicks fingers], 'Hey, you cinch that waist so I can't breathe!'."
She might work out but she certainly wasn't the sporty type growing up.
She said: "My family would laugh at that question. My nickname in sports was Noodle Arms. I was always in the outfield. I'm much more sporty now with things like surfboarding, I like extreme sports such as snowmobiling and jumping off things.
"I like that kind of rush. I think if I was in the Olympics I'd do something fun like that.
"Only because I'm not good enough to be in ping pong or anything."
Nicole may be flying high in the career stakes but she still has a lot in her sights.
She said: "It feels to me like I've only just begun. I thought about why that is, and it's because I'm only using a fraction of my potential. You ain't seen nothing yet. It's never too late to be different.
Make it your own.
"I think you have to go with your gut and I actually meditate and pray on things a lot.
"Sometimes I go where the wind takes me but I put in 110 per cent because you'll always get something that way. I don't know how anybody does it without focusing on their spirituality, it just grounds me.
"I grew up in a religious family, my poppa is a bishop now so I'm a very spiritual girl.
"Being in this industry, there's so much negativity and it's easy to lose track of purpose sometimes."
And she has other talents too - so there are plenty of back-up plans if it all goes wrong.
She said: "I was a really good artist. I was so good that when I was in the 4th grade they put me in a school at weekends with adults. They said I excelled in drawing without looking. Some of my work went to Japan.
"Now though, I wish I was a professional surfer. I would show off so much.
"Also I'm the biggest goofball around. And I'm a great cleaner. I can clean a kitchen so well. Like, whistle clean. My mother taught me. Everything in my house has a place. Even my stapler."
If it all ended tomorrow, she knows what she'd try to hang on to for longest.
She said: "I'm so corny. The first thing I thought of was 'stillness'. And then I thought 'truffles'. Truffles on pasta.
"And chocolate truffle balls. Oh my gosh. I wouldn't give up my nice blankets either. My biggest indulgence is jewellery. I'm quite a Cartier girl.
"Diamonds just make me feel different.
Because you know what they're worth. My sheets are expensive too. You could buy a nice car for the cost of really good sheets.
"But it's what you go to bed with every night and it's heaven."
Nicole loves quiet down time with her family and friends but you won't find her shouting about those times on Twitter.
She said: "A night in is everything to me, it's magic. I only have a small circle of friends, they've been with me from the get-go. We crack open the wine, I cook some pasta and we go at it. We bare our souls. I love, love, love that.
"Social media gives me the heebiefrickin'-jeebies. It gives me so much anxiety. It's unnatural for me.
"I'm protective of what I want to share, I'll take a million pictures and stare at them and figure out a filter - then I think, 'Do I even want to share this?' "Because I know if my big toe is in the wrong place, it's gonna be on the cover of the papers. It takes up too much of my frickin' time and then I don't end up posting anything and it sucks.
"I wish I could. I want to share so much but I get afraid because of the way people pick it apart and ridicule you."
Bad massages are another thing that gets her down.
She said: "When people give me a massage and are just rubbing. I'm like, 'Put something into it! Change my life!' "Before they start I'm like, 'Do you have strong hands? If not I'll take somebody else'. I don't have massages often so I'm like, 'Make it count'. That's my motto this year."
Life is too short for bad massages and plenty of other things too, it seems.
She said: "I feel as if I'm 22. I'm 37 and I'm like, 'Where did my life go?' "We're so used to being like, 'What's tomorrow, what's next?', we're always living in the future. But you just have to be in it right now."
BRIT GIRL Above from left, Nicole in her Union Jack dress, with new beau Grigor Dimitrov, showing off her hot bod, and with ex Lewis Hamilton
WINNING FORM Nicole has become Muller's Team GB ambassador for the 2016 Olympics
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|Publication:||Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)|
|Date:||Mar 20, 2016|
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