Megawatt smile, voluminous curls, direct eye contact, ready hand extended to shake hello. Honestly, Ciara was probably born smizing. Back in 2004, the then 18-year-old dropped her debut single “Goodies” which—along with the accompanying video—established Ciara as a feisty around the way girl. The Atlanta-raised singer’s velvety vocals have always been underscored by her pause-rewind-watch-again dance moves. Dressed down in midriff-bearing tanks, jeans, and sneaks, Ciara was quickly anointed the Princess of Crunk&B.
Since then Ciara’s collaborated with the biggest names in the biz (Missy, Minaj, Ludacris, Timberlake), dabbled in acting, and released seven records including this year’s Beauty Marks. At the age of 33, she’s now balancing a successful career with motherhood (she’s got two kids), and for the first time in her life she’s enjoying total creative control. It’s a new era for Ciara: she’s the boss of her own label—Beauty Marks Entertainment—and she owns all her masters, which gives her freedom and total autonomy.
Given her years in the public eye, her experiences with label switch-ups, and personal life tabloid speculation, it’s not surprising that Ciara has a bottomless font of advice of her own as well as nuggets from others she’s picked up along the way.
In this installment of Best Advice above, she speaks to the tightrope that is balancing the professional and the personal in what becomes, quite unexpectedly, our most intimate episode yet.