Adele Strikes a Pose for Vogue

Lizbeth Scordo
Mert Alas and Marcus Pigott/Vogue
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Mert Alas and Marcus Pigott/Vogue

There's one word that definitely defines "on top of the world" these days: Adele.

Thanks to her soulful voice, the 23-year-old songstress has become a hit machine and was well rewarded at Sunday night's Grammy Awards when she took home a whopping six trophies, tying Beyonce for the most wins by a female artist in one evening.

Though the British beauty got some rare negative comments thrown her way last week, when designer Karl Lagerfield said during an interview that she was "a little too fat," Adele took the high road, responding with this statement: "I've never wanted to look like models on the covers of magazines. I represent the majority of women and I'm very proud of that. It's just never been an issue -- at least, I've never hung out with the sort of horrible people who make it an issue. I have insecurities of course, but I don't hang out with anyone who points them out to me."

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She may not want to look like a cover girl, but this week, the "Rumour Has It" singer became one when she graced the cover of Vogue, which features a stunning photo spread of the singer in the iconic fashion magazine. Take that, Karl!

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In the accompanying interview, Adele talks about the emotional roller coaster ride she took when she burst multiple blood vessels on her vocal chords last year and eventually had to have surgery. "I knew my voice was in trouble," she says in the March issue, "and obviously I cried a lot. But crying is really bad for your vocal cords, too!"

Mert Alas and Marcus Pigott/Vogue
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Mert Alas and Marcus Pigott/Vogue

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She was advised to see a well-known Boston-based throat surgeon, who made her "feel safe," she says, and then was put even more at ease when other legendary musicians who went through the same surgery, including Elton John, Steven Tyler, and others, contacted her. "John Mayer had it done at the same time as I did," reveals Adele, "and he really helped me be chilled out about it.

After three years of non-stop activity, during which time her career took off and she went from an up-and-coming singer to bona fide superstar, the post-surgery recovery period was actually a nice change. "I think I just needed to be silenced. And when you are silent, everyone else around you is silent. So the noise in my life just stopped. It was like I was floating in the sea for three weeks. It was brilliant. It was my body telling me to fix me," Adele explains. "I had so much time to kind of go over things and get over things, which is amazing. I think if I hadn't had my voice trouble, I would never have broached those subjects with myself. Now I just feel really at peace. And really proud of myself. I've never fully appreciated the things that I've achieved until now."

Mert Alas and Marcus Pigott/Vogue
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Mert Alas and Marcus Pigott/Vogue

The Grammys ceremony marked the crooner's triumphant return to the stage as she belted out "Rolling in the Deep" to a standing ovation. And while that moment was surely one that will be etched in her memory forever, she could have done without all the requisite celebrity stuff that came earlier in the evening.

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"I hate the red carpet. I don't feel insecure, I just feel like, 'Oh, I don't want to do this.' I literally get a stomach cramp. At the VMAs last year I felt really out of my comfort zone because there were so many superstars there," Adele confesses. "But that's been the case from day one. I never feel like, 'Oh, yeah, I should be here.' And I was missing my best friend's hen night. So I was a bit bitter that I wasn't there, to be perfectly honest."

Sorry, Adele. I get the feeling you've got lots more red carpets in your future.

The March issue of Vogue hits newsstands on February 21.

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