Hold on to your pants, it’s still summer. And it’s still summer not because of what your calendar shows, but because Mariah Carey said so. Such is the kind of power you yield when you're the voice of a song so popular, so intrinsically linked to a season, that all other seasons can’t begin or end without your input, first. Released in 1994, “All I Want For Christmas Is You” wasn’t Mariah Carey’s first hit single, and it certainly won’t be her last (please play last year’s “A No No” at your leisure for definitive proof).
And in her thirty year history in the public eye, Mariah Carey has dropped a lot more gems beyond music—through interviews and in tweets, her life story comes into focus. Her upbringing? (It’s complicated.) Her favorite artist to collaborate with? (Herself.) Her thoughts on Jennifer Lopez? (She’ll form an opinion when she gets to know her.) And that’s just what we pulled up from the first page of Google results—thirty years of fame makes for a lot of interviews! And since each of her responses in these interviews is better than the last, we thought I'd be fun to distill a number of them below for you. From Mariah Carey's perspective on sleep, to why you won't see her in red lipstick, here's what we Googled about the music icon—and, what we learned.
How old is Mariah Carey?
"I don't have a birthday. I was just dropped here. It was a fairyland experience."1
Hmmm… let’s try: Mariah Carey age.
"I think I have to remain eternally oblivious to age. Honestly, when you put a number on it yourself, it's just like, Why? Why do that?"2
Is Mariah Carey a feminist?
“I'm not Gloria Steinem, but I mean, I'm definitely all for powerful women.”4
Is Mariah Carey a diva?
“I really play it up with the diamonds and the hair and the makeup and the this-and-the-that and the shoes and the whole ensemble, but honestly, is that me? I don't really know. Yeah, part of it is me. I mean, would I be mad if someone gave me a new diamond bracelet? No. But that doesn't mean that's all I care about.”5
What’s Mariah Carey’s makeup philosophy?
"If you're not wearing a lot of makeup, you don't have to take a lot of it off. So, my goal is to wear the least amount of makeup possible so I don't have to steam my face and take it all off.”1
What’s the most iconic Mariah Carey beauty look?
“I don't think there were great beauty trends in the '90s—I was just doing my own thing."4
I beg to differ! She must have been working with a great makeup artist, right?
“In the beginning I didn't know what was going on with the makeup—[when I worked] with Laura Mercier, it was a turning point for me.”4
Does Mariah Carey ever wear a red lip?
“I look horrible with a red lip. I probably should have gotten my lips done, but it’s too late.”7
Got it. Any other makeup pet peeves?
“I hate mascara. I never wear it. Whenever a makeup artist tries to put it on me, I throw a fit.”8
She knows a lot about beauty! Almost as if she went to beauty school or something!
“I started beauty school in the 11th grade, and a year later I was officially a beauty school dropout.”8
Why did she drop out?
“We had to wear a smock and everything. Hideous shoes.”4
Did she at least learn anything helpful?
“[In beauty school] they would make us do scalp treatments on each other. And cholesterol treatments, stuff like that. You just put a wrap on your head—like a heat cap. And before that they stimulate the scalp.”4
Cool! Wonder if she ever did that kind of treatment on herself.
“[When I was just starting out] I wanted to be a singer, I wanted to be an actress, [but] at that point I still didn't really have conditioner or know how to comb through textured hair. [Now] if I have to do my hair from scratch, I'll keep it natural."9
What does Mariah Carey do to unwind?
“The bathtub is my place of serenity. Any tub, really—bathtub, hot tub or whatever. As long as there is water.”8
What if there isn’t water?
“I bathe in milk. Sometimes I use milk as a beauty treatment. Cold milk. I guess if there’s no clean water and I had to use mineral water, maybe I would.”10
Has she always had it this good?
“I remember it not being easy getting a record deal. Making demos in the middle of the night, sleeping on the floor in the studio, being broke with no food. My go-to meal was Newman's Own sauce. Me and my friend would split the pasta and sauce for, like, a week. Or it was, like, a bagel and iced tea. The guy would give it to me at the deli for free."11
Yikes. What does she eat now?
"My diet [is really hard], you would hate it. All you eat is Norwegian salmon and capers every day. That's it. I'm actually serious, it's the worst.”12
Surely she can have a salad?
"Don't eat salad if you're about to do a photo shoot, because it bloats you. Never eat the water."9
Now I’m scared to find out her workout routine.
"Today, my workout routine is more about getting and staying toned. For me, that means either taking hour-long walks a few times a week or jumping in the pool three or four days a week to do 45 minutes of aquatic exercises."9
Does Mariah Carey have any allergies?
“I have an extreme aversion to overhead lighting. In my opinion, elevator lighting is toxic!”8
How can she see anything without overhead lighting?
"In my apartment in New York, it's all recessed lighting, chandeliers, candles. Overhead lighting is abusive.”9
What is Mariah Carey’s favorite thing?
“I'm so about the bed. I just lay in bed and put a towel over me. I'm literally like a 2 year old, I just eat and watch TV—not that that's something to be proud of.”3
I do that, too! Are Mariah Carey and I the same person?
“Literally I'll have twenty humidifiers around the bed. In my apartment—which one day will be finished, and I'll be good to move in—I have a room that’s basically for sleeping in a steam room. The bed is all terry cloth, the ceiling is pitched so the water can't fall on my head, and it drips down to my side, and the TV is behind glass.”3
Welp, nevermind. Does she have anything else to say?
“I'm sorry, I'm having a "sleep" moment.”4
Collage via ITG.