Taylor Swift may be 18, but her career is six years in the making. The Should’ve Said No singer began writing songs at 12, and visited Nashville every weekend beginning at 13 in hopes of one day becoming the star she is today.

“I guess I found something that I loved, and was good at, and just never stopped and never put it down,” she tells me of her drive. “Music was the one thing that I felt like I was comfortable doing. It was the first time I felt at home – when I started playing music and writing songs. I never stopped being in love with it.”

She is proud to be called a role model even though fellow teen icons like Vanessa Hudgens, Miley Cyrus and Jamie Lynn Spears have taken hard knocks under the spotlight’s glare.

“The pressure to be a good role model makes me a better person,” Taylor tells me. “I like it. It makes me keep my life in line, definitely, knowing that people are watching. I think it’s one of the most amazing compliments in the world, when a mother walks up and says ‘thank you for being a good role model for my daughter’ because that compliments your character.”

As a role model, Taylor has gazillions of girls copying her style.

How can we get hair like her’s?

“It’s crazy,” she laughs. “I used to hate my hair. When I was in middle school, every cool girl had straight hair, and I wanted straight hair so bad, but I had curly hair. My hair’s naturally curly, and it’s naturally the way it looks, but if you want to replicate it, I suggest – there are two different ways to curl your hair. Try wrapping the curl around the barrel [of the curling iron] and that will create a better spiral curl. That’s my best advice.”

What’s her style secret?

“My favorite outfit is a sundress paired with boots. That’s my favorite thing to wear, but lately I’ve been liking accessories. Lately I’ve been wearing a silk scarf around my neck, or I’ll wear a million necklaces and a bunch of bracelets. I like to accessorize.”

Pick up the OK! on newsstands now for a Quick Chat with Taylor Swift. “Britney Tells All About Her Boys And Her New Life” is the cover line. And, catch Taylor on the CMA Music Festival, which airs September 8 on ABC.

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