Rocking a black Dolce & Gabbana crop top, patterned skirt by Prada and hoop earrings by Jennifer Fisher, the 20-year-old singer stuns on the cover of Net-a-Porter's The EDIT. In her accompanying interview with the digital magazine, she opens up about why she ultimately chose to leave Fifth Harmony in December 2016 and go solo.
"With the experiences we had being in the studio, I became super-curious about songwriting and it was around the time -- I think it was the second year that I was with the group -- that I wanted to start songwriting for other people," she explains. "But once I was old enough to experience my first kiss, or the first time that I went out on a date, I began writing songs about it, and I didn't want to give them away to anybody else because they were about me. I was finding my voice, and with it, I found the passion that gives you a deeper meaning."
Despite what some fans may think, Cabello seemingly doesn't have any bad blood with the all-female group, which is currently made up of Normani Kordei, Ally Brooke, Dinah Jane and Lauren Jauregui. In fact, she says she wouldn't be where she is today had they not been paired together on season two of TheX Factor in 2012.
"Man, it shaped me entirely," Cabello says. "I would not be the person that I am right now; I would not have been ready for this. I feel like being part of a group teaches you so many things about yourself, ironically."
"It also brings out this healthy competition, you know what I mean?" she continues. "You never want to be the one that sucks."
Luckily, the Cuban-American singer didn't have to make the career-changing decision entirely on her own. She credits her parents for their support since the beginning.
"There are characteristics [about me] that are super-Latin," she explains. "My parents don't think that anything is that big of a deal because they went through so much struggle to get where they are. So whenever I'm like, 'Ooh, I'm so nervous, I'm about to perform,' they’re like, 'Cut the crap. You'll be OK."
Despite all the success she's had over the past year (her single, "Havana," went No. 1 and she released her debut solo album, Camila), there is one area of her life that she hopes to improve on in 2018: being more courageous when meeting new people.
"I work so much that I don't see people for a long time, and then I forget how to interact with people [socially]," she admits. "It makes me so nervous."
"Usually I don't want to go out and meet a new person," she continues. "Even if it's a boy I like, I try and make an excuse. [But] I go and push myself and do it, and I remember it's actually not scary to put yourself out there. Before, I was like, ‘It's just a part of my personality.' But I know that I have to constantly fight against [being] introverted. It's constantly something that I have to push myself to do."
Cabello says that even though "it's difficult" sometimes, in the end, it's "always worth it."