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Selena Gomez hasn’t disappeared. Not exactly. But in the past few months, the most followed person on Instagram (140 million and counting) has removed herself from the Tabloid Industrial Complex. In January, Gomez quietly moved to Orange County, where she and a friend from Hillsong Church, Raquelle, are playing house. “It’s been such a release. L.A.’s just gotten really claustrophobic for me. I can’t do any of the things I do here in L.A. It’s just impossible,” she says.
After selling her Calabasas estate—$3.3 million, to French Montana, of all people—she has now also put her Studio City bungalow on the market for $2.8 million. (Her Texas mansion, one of the most expensive homes near Fort Worth, is for sale at $3 million.) We’re sitting in a coffee shop, and Gomez, dressed in a denim jumpsuit, her hair pulled up behind a linen head scarf, opens a plastic container of pasta salad. “I think everything in my life is being majorly downsized, in a very good way,” she says. “I’m going back to simplicity. That’s always who I’ve been. It’s not me saying, ‘I feel the best I’ve ever felt,’” she continues. “It’s me saying, ‘I’m exactly where I am. And I’m so happy I’m in this place.’ It’s a lot of self-discovery. From 20 to 26? Oh my gosh. I feel like a totally different person.”
How so? “For a while, I think I did certain things because I thought I had to. Like, one of my friends looked at me one day—we were at lunch, and I think I purchased something, and she kind of looked at me and said, ‘Do you feel adequate enough?’”
„YOU CAN BUY A NICE THING TO FEEL GOOD. BUT IS THAT MY WORTH?”
That’s pretty harsh. “No, it’s the truth!” she says. “I’m not a materialistic person. [My friends] wouldn’t judge me on that anyway. I like getting massages, I love getting nice things…it’s just, is it connected to my worth? You can buy a nice thing to feel good. But is that my worth?”
These are heady questions. And it hints at where Gomez is these days. Because the thing is, she’s changed more than her address. She’s a singer, actress, producer, and fashion designer (her second Coach collaboration debuted in August)—and now she’s added a new role to her multihyphenate résumé: intern.