Camila Cabello Defends Her Need to "Protect" Relationship With Shawn Mendes

Superstar singer is featured in Elle's Women in Music issue alongside Lizzo, Billie Eilish and more artists

By Jess Cohen Sep 05, 2019 12:00 PMTags

Camila Cabello is speaking out about her relationship with Shawn Mendes.

The superstar singer, who has been sparking romance rumors with her "Señorita" collaborator, is opening up about her personal life in her cover story for Elle's Women in Music issue. Cabello's fellow female stars Lizzo and Billie Eilish are also featured in the October edition, and E! News can exclusively reveal the trio's individual cover photos!

In her cover story, Cabello, 22, talks about her need to protect her relationship with Mendes, especially with so much speculation surrounding the talented duo.

"Love is the most sacred, precious thing to me. I want to always feel like my love is between me and that person, and never belonging to anyone else," Cabello tells Elle. "As much as I love my fans, and as much as I love people, I like to live my life as normally as possible. In a relationship, it makes me feel uncomfortable to invite everyone in on that."

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Addressing the relationship speculation, Cabello says, "I don't know; people can say whatever they want to say. They can speculate, but at the same time, we are going to live our own lives, enjoy it, and fall for each other like nobody is watching. That is how I want to live .I never want to open the door for people to feel like they are involved. Like I said, I want it to be mine and [his]. That's why I'm so tight-lipped about it: because I want to protect it."

The singer also talks to Elle about working with Mendes, sharing, "I mean, I love him. We have always connected; we have the best time together. Shawn texted me the idea for the chorus for 'Señorita.' He was like, 'Hey, what if we work on this and do it together?'"

"I was on the Taylor Swift tour and hadn't been in the studio for a while. I didn't want to do it, and then a few months later, I couldn't get the song out of my head," Cabello continues. "I [finally] told him, 'I think we should do this.' He was like, 'I don't want to do it anymore.' It went back and forth for, like, eight months. Then we finally went into the studio and reworked it so we both felt good about it, without any pressure. I love working with him so much."

In Lizzo's cover story, the history-making "Truth Hurts" artist talks to Elle about the inspiration behind her chart-topping songs.

"My songs feel happy, but they come from a sad or frustrated place," Lizzo, 31, shares. "My songs are always the silver lining or the 'somewhere over the rainbow' moments."

It's noted that Lizzo either wrote or recorded tracks "Soulmate," "Truth Hurts," and "Crybaby," through "tears."

"Those songs are actual anecdotes, like real stories about real moments in time. 'Pull this car over, babe'—that is something that happened to me," Lizzo shares. "'New man on the Minnesota Vikings'—that happened to me. 'Old me used to love a Gemini'—that happened!"

Amid her rise to fame, Lizzo has become a self-love advocate, even opening up to her fans about her struggles with depression.

"I take self-love very seriously. And I take it seriously because when I was younger, I wanted to change everything about myself," she tells Elle. "I didn't love who I was. And the reason I didn't love who I was is because I was told I wasn't lovable by the media, by [people at] school, by not seeing myself in beauty ads, by not seeing myself in television…by lack of representation. My self-hatred got so bad that I was fantasizing about being other people. But you can't live your life trying to be somebody else. What's the point?"

Billie Eilish is another star who is an advocate of being your true self.

"When you're trying to come off a certain way, it's not gonna work," she tells Elle. "I was just making songs with my brother. Now it's like a thing: I'm this artist who's going against the whatever-the-f***."

"Where?! I wasn't saying, 'F*** pop!'" Eilish notes, putting her hands up. "I was just making what I wanted."

The 17-year-old "Ocean Eyes" artist also talks to Elle about quitting Twitter, sharing, "I was in Europe, in one of the worst headspaces I've been in. That's when I realized, 'You know what? Bye!' There are so many things I can't stop, but I can delete Twitter."

Eilish also addresses her struggles with depression, stating that she's in "the happiest place of my life" and she "didn't think that I would even make it to this age."

"I haven't been happy for years. I didn't think I would be happy again. And here I am—I've gotten to a point where I'm finally okay," Eilish says. "It's not because I'm famous. It's not because I have a little more money. It's so many different things: growing up, people coming into your life, certain people leaving your life. All I can say now is, for anybody who isn't doing well, it will get better. Have hope. I did this s--t with fame riding on my shoulders. And I love fame! Being famous is great, but it was horrible for a year. Now I love what I do, and I'm me again. The good me. And I love the eyes on me."

For more from the trio's cover stories, head on over to Elle.

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