Cover­girl: Jen­nifer Lopez

From the out­side, J-Lo’s life seems im­pos­si­bly glam­orous and busy. Cosmo goes on the in­side to find out how she makes it pos­si­ble.

Cosmopolitan (India) - - CONTENTS - Words Jancee Dunn; Photographs by Gomil­lion and Le­upold

An all-ac­cess VIP pass to JLo’s im­pos­si­bly glam­orous and busy life.

Alarge crowd is packed into an airy Man­hat­tan loft, wait­ing for Jen­nifer Lopez. Lopez, cur­rently stuck in traf­fic, is due to pre­view her au­tumn cloth­ing line for (US store) Kohl’s. Sud­denly, the group surges for­ward. Jen­nifer! She’s wear­ing an inky, slinky black hal­ter jump­suit, black plat­form stilet­tos, and bright pink lip­stick. She does a few quick TV in­ter­views and then joins me to in­spect the merch. When she talks about clothes, Lopez gets a dreamy look. One slightly nutty thing that she likes to do, she tells me, is take hours pack­ing for a trip—end­lessly putting to­gether out­fits for her­self and her 5-year-old twins, Max and Emme. “I do it for Beau too,” she says. That would be Beau ‘Casper’ Smart, her buff 26-year-old chore­og­ra­pher boyfriend. “If we have a flight in the morn­ing, I’m still pack­ing into the mid­dle of the night. I just like to play with clothes.”

As we chat, peo­ple are hov­er­ing. Peo­ple are al­ways hov­er­ing. Ev­ery­one wants their mo­ment with one of the most pow­er­ful women in en­ter­tain­ment. She made an es­ti­mated $52 mil­lion in 2012 by hav­ing her hand in seem­ingly ev­ery­thing: tele­vi­sion, film, mu­sic, fash­ion, and a 20-fra­grance beauty em­pire with Coty. She’s also made head­lines for less savoury projects this year, draw­ing fire for tak­ing high-pay­ing gigs in re­pres­sive coun­tries, such as Turk­menistan, where she sang for the pres­i­dent’s birth­day party in June. “I know that be­ing seen as a role model means tak­ing re­spon­si­bil­ity for all my ac­tions,” she says. “I am hu­man, and of course, some­times I make mis­takes. But I prom­ise that when I fall, I get back up. When I am wrong, I will learn the les­son and move on to face other chal­lenges.”

It seems Lopez was born mo­ti­vated. At five, the mid­dle daugh­ter of com­puter tech­ni­cian David Lopez and teacher

Guadalupe Rodriguez was al­ready tak­ing singing and danc­ing lessons and per­form­ing skits in the liv­ing room of their home in The Bronx. You know the rest— her break­through 1997 film, Se­lena, the si­mul­ta­ne­ous num­ber one movie ( The Wed­ding Plan­ner) and al­bum (J.Lo) in 2001, and the three wed­dings, and sub­se­quent divorces.

Her ca­reer went a bit quiet when the ba­bies were born, but in char­ac­ter­is­tic fash­ion, it came roar­ing back in 2011 af­ter her stint as the ‘nice judge’ on Amer­i­can Idol. Now—with a much-an­tic­i­pated re­turn to Idol for its 13th sea­son, her eighth stu­dio al­bum out next year, more prod­uct lines, and a stepped-up film ca­reer—her mojo is more po­tent right now than ever.

It pains her that other women are of­ten so hes­i­tant to tap into their own power. “We give away our power so much—even in love, with men,” she says. “And it’s al­ways looked down on in the world for women to be pow­er­ful—they get la­belled as dif­fi­cult or bitchy.” Even Lopez, who ra­di­ates pure con­fi­dence, ad­mits she only started feel­ing sure of her­self later in life. “It was af­ter I had the kids, to be hon­est,” she says. “The big­gest in­se­cu­rity I had was my singing,” she says. “Even though I had sold 70 mil­lion records, there was this feel­ing like, I’m not good at this. And while I was mar­ried to Marc, he helped me get over it. He kept telling me, ‘You’re the only one hold­ing your­self back from reach­ing your full po­ten­tial as a singer. You have to let go’.”

Nor did she feel, deep down, that she de­served suc­cess. “I was al­ways so in­se­cure,” she says. “Then I grew, lit­tle by lit­tle, and re­alised this is not a fluke. I’m not a mis­take—I work my ass off. And I know what I’m do­ing.”

Her pub­li­cist moves in and whispers in her ear. I hear

“I WAS SO IN­SE­CURE. THEN I GREW, AND RE­ALISED THIS IS NOT A FLUKE. I’M NOT A MIS­TAKE—I WORK MY ASS OFF!”

“meet­ings” and “con­fer­ence” and “car wait­ing.” “Gotta go,” she says. A week later, Lopez calls me from her home in Los An­ge­les, wind­ing down af­ter a rare day off. She keeps mean­ing to go on a va­ca­tion, she says, but some­how, she never does. Luck­ily, she was able to com­bine busi­ness with plea­sure dur­ing last year’s tour. Smart was su­per­vis­ing chore­og­ra­pher, so the two would grab time be­tween shows—din­ner in Lon­don, a club in Is­tan­bul. “For me, it’s about hav­ing a great part­ner to walk this life with,” she says of Smart, whom she calls her best friend. “I have my own high stan­dards for what I want in a part­ner and how I want to be treated. I bring a lot to the ta­ble. I’m not talk­ing about the ma­te­rial things but what I have to of­fer as a per­son—love and loy­alty and all the things that make a good re­la­tion­ship.”

And when she com­mits to a man, she gives her­self com­pletely. “It’s funny, early on with Beau, I re­mem­ber telling him how I have a real but­ton on be­ing ig­nored,” she says. “And he was like, ‘Lis­ten, if some­body ig­nores you, then for­get them. They don’t de­serve to have your at­ten­tion’. But it’s funny. Some­times when we don’t get it, we try to get it in a neg­a­tive way, you know? And then it be­comes a habit, and you’re like, Why am I do­ing this?” she says.

I could go on talk­ing to her for a few more hours, but my reverie is bro­ken when the kids rush into her room. Once again, she must leave. The twins need to be put to bed. But she has one more thing left to do: shimmy into sparkly black skintight trousers and an abs-bar­ing bra top and jump in a limo for the Hol­ly­wood Bowl, where her col­lab­o­ra­tor Pit­bull is do­ing a show. Some­time be­fore 11p.m., she’ll burst on­stage in a sur­prise ap­pear­ance as fire­works ex­plode around her and the crowd loses its col­lec­tive mind. In other words, just a nor­mal Tues­day.

Jen­nifer Lopez let’s us in on her life be­yond the cam­eras.

Ar­riv­ing for the Idol show with boyfriend, Beau ‘Casper’ Smart

Prep­ping to talk to ad­ver­tis­ers about her TV net­work

Hold­ing Emme af­ter the un­veil­ing of Lopez’s star on the Hol­ly­wood Walk of Fame

Prac­tic­ing for the Bill­board

Awards

Dress­ing for the Amer­i­can Idol sea­son 12 fi­nale in Los An­ge­les

Get­ting a kiss from Smart af­ter the Amer­i­can Idol fi­nale

Per­form­ing for 50,000 peo­ple at the Lon­don Chime for Change ben­e­fit, which raised money for women’s and girls’ is­sues

Ar­riv­ing at Twick­en­ham Sta­dium for the Lon­don con­cert

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