For many the name Sinitta ignites a memory of Simon Cowell, but for those who know Sinitta well will tell you there is a lot more to her than meets the eye, and certainly a lot more than the tabloids seem to skim over.
The 51 year old will tell you herself she’s all about working hard, not taking herself seriously and having plenty of laughs. Just before lockdown the iconic musician and actress was working hard on her musical roots, gigging and working on her new single Paradise with record producer Martin West and Grammy winning record producer Yoad Nevo. Paradise is now available on all music platforms.
During this time Sinitta, a self-confessed germaphobe tested positive for COVID-19.
We sat down (over the phone of course) to discuss how she’s been coping during the constraints of lockdown, fighting off the virus and staying mentally motivated during this time.
Thank you for taking time to do this Sinitta.
So tell us how have you been keeping yourself mentally motivated during this lockdown period?
I realised I needed to use the time to do things I wanted to do, but didn’t have time to do previously. At the beginning of the lockdown I just watched television for hours as I usually only watch it on the weekends. So the first couple of weeks it felt like so much fun and guilt free… then the novelty wore off and I got tired of sitting around.
When I came down with the Virus, I was wiped out… it was weird, I kept burning food and realised it was because I couldn’t smell anything…. not even the food warming up in the oven, then i’d think i’d forgotten to turn it on and go to the oven to find my food charcoal black. Two days in a row this happened.
I also had no appetite in the mornings at all so I would make lunch and this kept happening until I finally keeled over. Later I learned I had those symptoms but didn’t know they were symptoms. I did not suspect I had it until I started to cough and feel faint and out of breath and dizzy spells.
It was bizarre thinking “WOW, I think I have the thing! …. I felt like I had swallowed razor blades and likely had feathers or a bird flapping in my chest, followed by this heaviness and a non stop cough that was so hard.
I felt so dehydrated that I would gag and not be able to catch my breath in between. I was coughing so much my throat was raw.
So keeping hydrated has been more crucial than ever for you?
Even before the virus I kept very well hydrated, it is literally the secret to good skin and everything else! Water and moisturiser and eating moisture rich foods is vital.
You mention skincare and you are absolutely stunningly youthful looking, is there a go to product you use to keep yourself looking so fresh?
Coconut oil to clean teeth before brushing is a nice way to keep plaque away and plenty of vitamin C and E.
You love to workout we know, but is there a favourite outfit for exercising in?
I love cool exercise kits and live in them as I usually do Pilates, Yoga or Barre every morning, I’m always on the lookout for cool new brands.
What about a guilty pleasure food and drink wise and do you follow a strict diet?
I am obsessed with Pineapples and Papaya! I also drink distilled water that I make myself. I take Symprove and Vitamins religiously. My Guilty pleasure is Babease Baby Pea or Lentil puffs and I love these ice cream called Coco Nutters.
Naughty pleasures include Sunbites chilli tomato flavour, and I wish I had never discovered Monster Munch chilli and tomato and pickled onion flavours! Omg! They are actually addictive, so goodness knows what’s in them, I’m too scared to look. But I was hooked after my son made me eat just one… I ended up eating a multi pack of five or six! I had to lock a multi pack in my guest bedroom to stop myself doing it again!
My friends get them for me now as a treat. Please no one give me them any more, they are lethal!
No diet but a naughty day has to be followed by a clean day, so I stay feeling good. Really good quality Tequila is my favourite drink, Oprah has created a great one, and so has George Clooney but my out and out favourite has to be Patrone, it is lovely and Don Julio aged and I like it with water, stevia, lime and a hot raw chilli!
If you could sit at the dinner table with anyone from history who would you choose and why?
It would have to be Princess Diana as I knew her from the Harbour Club, but I don’t feel as though I did what I was meant to do as I wanted to get the courage to invite her to Hillsong Church.
I kept chickening out and the week that I was going to do it, she went to France and died and I felt ever so guilty that I hadn’t reached out as it may have helped, she needed that kind of friend. Not another sycophant!
During the lockdown we like everyone else have had plenty of time watching new things online and we’ve especially been enjoying watching your #InstagramTvSeries about #YouAreNotAlone, #MentalAndSpiritualHealth, can you tell those that haven’t seen it yet what your message is and how they can help themselves?
I’m a christian, but I’m not in your face kind of religious, I hope I will introduce people to Jesus and to God if they don’t know them already. And to help dispel people’s ideas about having faith. My spirituality has pulled me through some of the worst times in my life and I want to help people find their way…
People with family members suffering or dying, with worries about money and jobs, people with addictions, anyone who feels in a dark place, help them find a way to cope so they can more than survive but actually even thrive during these times with endless support.
There’s also the videos for 3 – 7 year olds that were absolutely adorable, will you be doing more of these?
The bedtime stories for little ones featuring my Pup Scarlet! She reads the stories to all of her little toy friends in the house and ends up reading to china animals and wooden ones, It was fun to make but a lot of work! So I stopped after 10! I Used to read stories on a show called Jackanory and I loved it.
Is there a message you’d like to send out to your fans who are struggling with the lockdown?
Yes please, this is so hard for some of you, I know. I’m doing a daily spiritual chat every morning for 100 Days and then starting another on My Instagram Series Section called Mental + Spiritual Health. Try to find five minutes when you wake up to take a look or before you go to sleep at night.
Let some of those thoughts and ideas be on your mind before you fall asleep. Let’s try to delete some anxiety and reprogram some thoughts that can help alleviate some fear and anxiety. It really helped and continues to help me and I believe and hope and pray I can help you too.
Keep breathing and never give up hope. Whenever you feel a wave of sadness or panic, Don’t panic, note it, acknowledge it, but then try to think about 3 things that you are thankful for.
It can be the silliest thing…. finding a button for something you thought you lost. Finding a pound coin in a pocket, a text from a friend. A laugh out loud clip on Instagram or the Sun shining, your favourite feature.
Make a weird face pack out of the leftover egg white insides of an egg shell, do a headstand against the wall, listen to classical music or Heart Fm.
Write down something positive and anything you think of at random times always in the same note pad or old diary. Massage your own feet with a tennis ball or small firm ball.
Treat yourself, Love yourself!
And once lockdown is over are there any other projects in the pipeline that you can tell us about?
Well, I created a show about up and coming talented people and their lives that I pray will be successful.
There’s also my mentoring program Attinis which is for all entertainment artists from all backgrounds around the world.
And don’t forget to check out my new single ‘Paradise’ that is part of an 80’s Album called ‘Rediscovered’ featuring lots of 80’s Artists covering songs they love.