With a hit album, A Girl Like Me soaring the charts and three 2006 Billboard Music Awards under her belt, sultry songstress Rihanna is breaking into the world of beauty by becoming Cover Girl’s latest spokesmodel. Joining other notable lovlies such as Keri Russel, Molly Sims and Queen Latifah, Rihanna shot her first Cover Girl ads in December 2006 for a North American launch in Summer 2007.

“Rihanna’s natural beauty and musical talents make her a perfect fit for Cover Girl,” says Gina Drosos, Vice President and General Manager of Global Cosmetics, Proctor & Gamble Beauty. “She is a confident young woman who exemplifies the Cover Girl ideals.”

We chatted with the Barbadian bombshell about her beauty rituals.

ELLE Canada: Why did you choose Cover Girl as your foray into the beauty biz?

Rihanna: I’ve always loved make-up, so I am thrilled to be the newest Cover Girl! When I was growing up in Barbados, my mom was a make-up artist. I remember watching her apply lipstick, blush and masacara and being so fascinated … I couldn’t wait until she let me wear it!

EC: What beauty products can you not live without?

R: At night when I’m performing I like to play-up with my lips and make them more dramatic. I love wearing deep, vivid colours (like Cover Girl’s Lipshine in ’14 Carat Ruby’). When I’m not performing, I prefer a more natural, glossy look. To make my skin even and flawless-looking, I use Cover Girl TruBlend Whipped Foundation.

EC: Who is your beauty icon?

R: I love Queen Latifah! She is a great role model, demonstrating that beauty comes in all shapes, sizes and colours. I admire both her inner and outer beauty and am so proud to be following in her footsteps, not only as a musician, but also as a Cover Girl.

EC: What is the best beauty advice you ever received?

R: The biggest beauty tip I ever received was from my mother. She always told me to never over-do my make-up, especially foundation. Her advice was to apply it just where it needed so that the skin’s natural colour shines through.

EC: Joining the ranks of Cover Girl will “up” your profile even more in the public eye — How do you feel being a role model for young women?

R: I am honoured that Cover Girl chose me as their newest face. I love working with the brand because they focus on the beauty of women from the inside to the out. I hope I inspire young women to be themselves and never give up their dreams.

EC: What is up next in your musical career?

R: I had a great year in 2006 having won the “Female Artist of the Year” at the Billboard Music Awards. That was huge. Now I’m working on my third album, so … stay tuned!