By: Zon D’Amour
Adrienne Bailon burst onto the scene in 1999 as the 16-year-old lead singer of the multi-platinum girl group, 3LW. At 20, she became a part of the world wide Disney franchise, The Cheetah Girls. Now at 30 years old, having several reality shows and films under her belt sheÂ has reemerged as a TV personality as the host of Oxygen Networkâ€™s new competition series Nailâ€™d It and is a co-host on The Real.
Making a successful transition from child star to a mature, enterprising woman is not easy in Hollywood. Bailon talks to CocoaFab about her new projects, reinventing herself and offers advice for aspiring hosts.
CocoaFab: Are you still working on music? Between Nailâ€™d It and The Real, how do you prioritize your time and your passions?
Adrienne Bailon: I truly believe in the phrase â€˜you make time for the things that you want to do.â€™ You find the time for anything that you really want to accomplish. Iâ€™ve been blessed with so many opportunities and I want to give110% to everything I do. Even though I was working on music prior to The Real, A lot of people still associated me with 3LW and The Cheetah Girls.
People are finally getting to know me through my shows, my personality and my life experiences. Thatâ€™s going to be so helpful when I release new music. The songs are going to make sense to my fans. I canâ€™t wait to get in the studio and get back to music.
CF: You recently turned 30, what have you learned about life and business that you didnâ€™t know when you were 21?
AB: I learned how to say â€œnoâ€ which I didnâ€™t know how to do in my twentyâ€™s. I used to have this habit where I would feel bad about everything. If I couldnâ€™t make it somewhere, even if it was something I didnâ€™t want to do, I felt like I had to do it. Something as simple as an interview, if I didnâ€™t want to answer a question, I felt like I didnâ€™t have a choice. When you turn a certain age [like 30] you get to a point where you can standup for yourself and say â€˜I donâ€™t want to do this so Iâ€™m not going to, period.â€™
CF: What attracted you toÂ Nailâ€™d It? There are so many reality show competitions, what will make people interested to watch a show about nails?
AB: For me, what made the opportunity so special was that it was organic and itâ€™s something that Iâ€™m actually passionate about. People get asked to do jobs all the time and they just do it for a check. For me Nailâ€™d It was a passion project. I love nails; I have my own polish line called Fingertip Fetish (which is re-launching for the holidays). I definitely wanted to be apart of a show like this which is the first ever nail art competition show on television. The experience surpassed my wildest dreams of what I thought nails could do.
CF: Youâ€™ve been in the industry almost two decades. What kind of patience and resilience was necessary for you not to give up on your dreams?
AB: It definitely takes a lot of resilience, which is the keyword. You have to believe in yourself and never give up. You have to find new ways to reinvent yourself. For me, I always say being cute may get you in the door but itâ€™s the hard work that opens up so many other doors. I like to think that word has got around that Iâ€™m easy to work with, and down to earth. I feel so blessed to be presented with so many opportunities that I never take them for granted.
Iâ€™m always ready to work and put my best foot forward. I believe that has made a difference in my career. And being kind to people truly goes along way. Iâ€™m sure a lot of people counted me out but itâ€™s during those times that I really had to believe in myself and remember that God has a plan for my life and the right doors will always open.
CF: How do you define success?
AB: Success is being happy, comfortable in your own skin and being surrounded by love. I have a great family and a great relationship. Self-love is also extremely important as well as getting to a place where youâ€™re happy with yourself. Successâ€¦and what would make me the happiness is always having stability. Thatâ€™s very important to me. Between having The Real, Nailâ€™d It and adjusting to life in Los Angeles, Iâ€™m on my way to finding my version of ultimate success.
CF: What happened to theÂ second season of Empire Girls with Julissa Bermudez? Will you be doing any more reality TV shows?
AB: The show aired on Style Network which doesnâ€™t exist anymore. When we were in our negotiations for the next season the network was acquired. (Style Network was rebranded into the Esquire Network.) I realized that The Real is enough reality for my life. Weâ€™re so honest on the show and we even have segments where the cameras come home with us and viewers get a glimpse into our lives which is pretty cool.
CF: On The Real, youâ€™ve been extremely candid about everything from your exes to watching porn and having breasts implants. Is there anything that youâ€™re censored about to protect your family or your reputation?
AB: I think it takes a lot of courage to be so open and I believe thatâ€™s something that should be applauded. You can be a role model in your own way by sharing your life experiences, sharing your opinion on certain situations and letting people know â€˜itâ€™s okay, youâ€™re not alone Iâ€™ve been through that same situation.â€™ Everything I share may not always be happy and positive but itâ€™s the truth.
While I would be happily talk about myself all day I wonâ€™t speak on other peoples issues and failures because thatâ€™s not my place so itâ€™s something I wont do.
Iâ€™ve chosen to be a public figure, I date a man whoâ€™s not an entertainment, he has no desire to be in front of the camera and I have to respect that so thereâ€™s a level of privacy and discretion about our relationship.
CF: Whatâ€™s your advice for aspiring TV personalities? How do you prepare to host a television show?
AB: I never had an acting coach or hosting coach, Iâ€™ve never been able to take classes but I believe the most important tip for aspiring hosts is to remember to be yourself. Thereâ€™s nothing better than seeing someone thatâ€™s natural and comfortable being themselves. Thatâ€™s what makes you relatable and makes people want to get to know you.