Jessica Simpson Talks John Mayer, Mom Jeans Backlash And A New Album In Allure: Cover Story

With flawless skin, smoky eyes, and a sultry expression, Jessica Simpson is looking all kinds of gorgeous on the cover of Allure’s March issue. In a candid interview, the singer who first shot to super-stardom on MTV’s “Newlyweds” talks frankly about old romances, new projects and feeling beautiful in her own skin.

After 10 years of life in the sometimes-harsh media spotlight, Jessica has embarked on a new venture about opening minds, broadening horizons, and pushing boundaries. After visiting eight different countries to tape episodes of her new VH1 show, “The Price of Beauty,” she explained how the experience turned her preconceived idea of beauty on its head: “In a lot of Asian cultures, the whiter you are, the more beautiful you are—and what I’m so used to is ‘The tanner you are, the thinner you look, the skinnier you feel,” she says. Premiering next month, the show explores the concept of beauty across international borders and cultural lines.

Of course, Jessica has had her own demons to battle when it comes to the beauty ideal — nobody could forget the infamous Kiss Country Chili Cook-Off photos of the star wearing a pair of unflattering “Mom jeans,” which made the rounds on internet gossip sites last year. Apparently, well-meaning fans haven’t let the incident go, says Jessica. “When I walk through an airport and people go, ‘You’re not fat!’ I’m like, ‘Thanks. That’s great. Good to know I’m not fat today! Thank you!'”

But this blonde bombshell isn’t dwelling on yesterday’s internet scandals; she’s too busy looking to the future, which she says will include not only another album (there’s one left in her contract), but more hands-on work as a music producer and a return to acting in edgier, more intellectual roles. As her thirtieth birthday approaches, Jessica is pragmatic about the path she’s taken so far, including a few unexpected bumps. “I never really thought, growing up, what am I gonna be like when I’m 30? I just kind of thought I had it figured out: I’m going to be this great pop star, have my songs on the radio, be married, and have babies….But things can be taken away from you. A song can not be played on the radio. An album can not work.”

As for her love life, Jessica claims to be happily unattached (despite speculation that she’s been canoodling with former Smashing Pumpkin Billy Corgan.) But there’s one man-related rumor she would like to clear up, about former fling John Mayer:

“He didn’t make me go brunette! John doesn’t get credit for making me brunette. He’d like to think so, but he doesn’t deserve the credit.”

And a good thing, too — dude’s caused enough trouble already.

Will you be watching Jessica on “The Price of Beauty”?