Gwen Stefani

Gwen Stefani: 'I've Always Been on a Diet'

04/12/2007 at 02:40 PM EDT

Gwen Stefani: 'I've Always Been on a Diet'
Gwen Stefani
Frazer Harrison/Getty
You can excuse a girl a bit of vanity – even Gwen Stefani. "If you had paparazzi outside your house, you'd make sure you looked good, too," the singer and fashion designer tells Harper's Bazaar in its May issue.

Stefani, 37, says she was "dying to get out of the house" when she was pregnant last year, but says: "I had to sneak into the back of my brother Todd's car – eight months pregnant – and lie down on the floor. Just so we could go to Target."

Baby Kingston was born in May 2006 and Stefani immediately set about losing her pregnancy pounds. "It's so much work afterward to get the weight off," she says. "If you just do it, it comes off. And when you're nursing, like I am, your metabolism is like whoosh!"

Still, Stefani admits that she struggled to keep her size 4 figure even before her pregnancy. "I hate talking about it, but it's true," she says. "I've always been on a diet, ever since I was in the sixth grade. It's an ongoing battle and it's a nightmare. But I like clothes too much, and I always wanted to wear the outfits I would make." She adds with a laugh: "And I'm very vain."

She says she contents herself with "all the healthy stuff" most of the time, "but I let myself cheat once or twice a day with a cookie or pizza."

Stefani can expect quite a workout when she embarks on her two-month U.S. tour to promote her new album, The Sweet Escape, on April 21 in Las Vegas. After that? Well, she did tell Ellen DeGeneres in February she was "ready to go" for another child.

Gwen Stefani: 'I've Always Been on a Diet'| Gwen Stefani

"Now I'm in a repeater zone," she confirms to Bazaar. "I just want to make babies and make records."

Luckily, she's got help from her husband of more than four years, Gavin Rossdale. "I even wrote in a song, 'You seem like you'd be a good dad,' " she says. "So, yeah he's lived up to my expectations, more than. He has always been very loving and romantic."

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