Mariah Carey opens up about her dating life in PEOPLE's exclusive first look at the August issue of Cosmopolitan

By Maria Pasquini
July 09, 2019 08:00 AM

Mariah Carey can count the amount of men she’s been with on one hand.

In PEOPLE’s exclusive first look at the August issue of Cosmopolitan, the pop icon revealed that while she has had some highly publicized romances throughout her career, she’s never been one to play the field.

“I haven’t had that many, but there has been a variety pack,” Carey, 49, told Cosmopolitan.

“I’ve only been with five people in my life, so I’m kind of a prude, honestly, compared to most others in the field,” she added.

The five-time Grammy-winning singer wed her first husband, Sony exec Tommy Mottola, in 1993, when she was a newcomer in the industry. Over a decade later, she tied the knot for a second time with Nick Cannon, 38, with whom she shares 8-year-old twins Moroccan and Monroe.

Carey is currently in a relationship backup dancer and choreographer Bryan Tananka, 36, whom she first began dating shortly after her split from Australian billionaire James Packer.

Mariah Carey
Jason Kim for Cosmopolitan
Mariah Carey
Jason Kim for Cosmopolitan

During the interview, Carey also briefly opened up about how she doesn’t do birthdays.

Asked by Cosmopolitan what the best birthday present she’d ever received was, the singer simply answered, “I don’t have birthdays.”

Instead, every year Carey celebrates her “anniversary” whenever March 27 rolls around — as do many of her fans and loved ones.

“I don’t count years but I definitely rebuke them,” she said during a 2014 interview with Observer. “I have anniversaries, not birthdays, because I celebrate life, darling.”

Jason Kim for Cosmopolitan

RELATED: Mariah Carey Responds to Ariana Grande’s Birthday Wishes as She Celebrates Her ‘Anniversary’

Imparting another bit of wisdom, Carey shared that the best advice she has for how to take a good selfie is to not take one at all.

“Let someone else take the picture,” she told Cosmopolitan.

Another tip for how to get the perfect picture seemingly involves one of the singer’s pet peeves.

“Unpurse your lips!!! Ugh.” she added.

Mariah Carey
Jason Kim for Cosmopolitan

RELATED: Mariah Carey Hilariously Masters the Bottle Cap Challenge Using Just Her Voice

However, there are times when selfies are absolutely necessary.

Last week, the pop star revealed that when she needs to frame her face herself, she will go to great lengths to get the perfect lighting.

Mariah Carey
Mariah Carey/Instagram

Sharing a photograph of herself appearing to make a FaceTime call, Carey posted a photo of herself squatting — in a dress, heels and plenty of jewelry — next to a small popcorn stand.

“Finding my light,” she captioned the post.

The August issue of Cosmopolitan hits the shelves on July 16.

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