Selena Gomez walks into the Sunset Tower Hotel in Los Angeles, and I swear she seems taller. She’s wearing Free People stripes and has heels on, of course—girl didn’t get to 123 million–plus Instagram followers without looking cute. But it’s more subtle than that. She looks more … grown.

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She orders a beet salad (“I’m treating myself later. My grandparents and I are getting Texas-style BBQ,” she says, acknowledging her meager order with a what-can-you-do shrug). “I actually lived at the Sunset Tower for three months,” she explains, adding matter-of-factly, “I was going through a really hard time in my life and decided to live here.”

I last interviewed Gomez four years ago for another magazine. She had taken me to a Hooters in the Valley, where she was a regular. She ordered fried pickles. She had long hair, wore a beanie, and spilled ketchup on her flannel shirt. We shot a little video together, and she brought a bag of clothes from home, including items from her Dream Out Loud collection for Kmart.

That was, of course, then. Tossed into a perfect storm of celebrity and social media, Gomez has faced the wave and surfed it. Her “bag of clothes from home” has evolved into contracts with Pantene and Coach; Hooters is now the Sunset Tower. This summer she’s been releasing, drop by Instagrammable drop, new music anticipated with a breathlessness on the level afforded to Adele. And, of course, her first public boyfriend, Justin Bieber, is history. (At the time of our interview, she’s six months into a relationship with Abel Tesfaye, aka The Weeknd.)

But to continue the hackneyed ocean metaphor, Gomez’s 10 years in the public eye have not all been smooth sailing. Last year she spent three months in a Tennessee treatment center for depression and anxiety. At 25, she’s reconciling her years of stardom with the emotional demands of real adult life. So it’s with some irony that she looks at a picture of herself in my folder and says, laughing drily, “I still have the ability to look 15.”

Gomez has a particularly potent power: Her celebrity comes not just from what she creates, how she looks, and whom she dates but from how she has suffered and how she has picked herself up. She is not a great advocate of the kind of childhood fame she experienced on the Disney Channel’s Wizards of Waverly Place. “I think it is really dysfunctional to be in this industry at a young age where you’re figuring out who you are. I don’t recommend it.”

But somehow Gomez has unselfconsciously condensed it all into some sort of elixir, which not only feeds her fans, her collaborators, and her business but makes her feel better too. But I’ll let her tell you about it. .. Read more via source