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Katy Perry is no longer living a teenage dream.

Instead, she's living a woman's dream, engulfed in not only success and sense of self, but years of lessons learned. While she was famously sheltered by a conservative upbringing, May's Vogue cover girl never lost her innate curiosity—an attribute she carries with her to this day. 

"My education started in my 20s, and there is so much to learn still," she told the magazine, recalling her childhood days when she not "allowed to interact with gay people" or celebrate Halloween among other restrictions as the daughter of Pentecostal pastors. "But I came out of the womb asking questions, curious from day one, and I am really grateful for that: My curiosity has led me here."

Katy Perry, Vogue, May 2017 Issue

Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott/Vogue

The roots of the Katy Perry the world knows today lingered early on in the form of style. In one particular instance, the songstress remembered a faux leopard fur coat she had spotted in a vintage shop window and needed to have. However, at $175, it seemed out of reach in her modest life. However, thanks to a Christmas dream come true, it became hers. 

"All the kids made fun of me," she told Vogue, "but I knew I was doing something right when the hot moms came over to me at school and were like, 'Where did you get that coat, sweetie?'"

Katy Perry, Vogue, May 2017 Issue

Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott/Vogue

Years—and a few fashion cycles—later, Perry is a shoe designer, co-chair of this year's Met Gala and ever-evolving style chameleon. "Fashion is just a language," Perry said. "It's storytelling. I am so encouraged by the big morph in fashion that's happening at the moment. Everybody is shape-shifting, changing, adapting." 

And so is she, starting with her hair. On the heels of her split from Orlando Bloom, she went in for a chop and bleach and now sports a blond pixie. "I'm in the process of going to platinum," she told the magazine, "like my status!"

While she's reaching for new heights in her professional career, Perry hasn't forgotten all she's learned on her journey to the top, particularly during those tricky young adult years. 

Katy Perry, Vogue, May 2017 Issue

Mert Alas and Marcus Piggott/Vogue

"It's a nice place to be," she said of her 32-year-old age. "I love it! I wouldn't give anything to go back to my 20s; I'm so much more grounded. And I've learned a lot of lessons—patience, the art of saying no, that everything doesn't have to end in marriage." That last bit is a reference to her 2-year marriage to Russell Brand, which ended tumultuously in 2012.

"I blasted off on a rocket, holding on for dear life...but I had so much ambition and determination, and that's what kept me going," she told the magazine. "The rocket was riding me for a bit, but now I am riding the rocket." 

The issue hits newsstands on April 25.