Some Like It Hot

Vanessa Abbott is the hottest woman in America. And you're not.

NT: Beautiful people always say things like that. Awkward moments. What if you'd been a really ugly child 24 hours a day?

Abbott: Well, between the ages 10 and 15, I was growing into myself, and didn't consider myself beautiful. Beautiful people aren't beautiful all day long, every day. Sometimes things don't look good, like your hair is bad or you have a pimple or whatever.

NT: Do other women hate you?

Abbott: I get some bitter remarks now and then, and I get a lot of looks. I get some people rolling their eyes at me. But you know, here's the thing: Women are competitive in general, and I can't explain that to you, because I'm not like that. My attitude is, "The more beautiful you are, the happier I am for you." I always live by the rule, "Treat others the way you want to be treated." I can't believe how other women act. Jealousy is a horrible emotion.

NT: Who's the second hottest woman in the world, after you?

Abbott: Well, if it were up to me, I'd say Charlize Theron. She's really beautiful, just a classic beauty. There's a lot of beautiful women, millions of them. I'm sure there are a lot of beautiful women out there I don't even know about.

NT: There might be a couple. Now, how can you use "Hottest Woman in America" to your advantage?

Abbott: I've gotten a lot of publicity, which has given me the chance to show people that I'm not just a pretty face. And I've been able to use it to pursue my modeling career, which has been nice. Other than that, I enjoy showing people that I'm a good person, and I'd like to, well, I know this sounds cheesy, but I'd like to use all this attention to do good things.

NT: Cheesy? Why in the world would that sound cheesy?

Abbott: You know, it's the typical thing that people in my position say. Except they never follow through and do it. Women in beauty pageants say that, because it's what people want to hear and it makes them sound well-rounded, so you don't think they're just into looking good and eye makeup and stuff. But I mean it. I like making other people excited, and I want to do a lot of that.

NT: Will you pose for Playboy?

Abbott: Never. Ever! I'll never do anything nude. I mean, in public. It's against my morals, and I don't want the whole world to see me naked. People are desperate for their 15 minutes of fame, and they'll do anything to get it. Which is horrible!

NT: I'll bet you've gotten a lot of marriage proposals since you were named Hottest Woman.

Abbott: Joking ones, mostly from customers at work. I'm not ready to get married. I need to finish school and, you know, do things for myself. I'm going to get a job in public relations. And I want to help needy children, maybe as a tutor or something.

NT: A really hot tutor! You were the cover model for a USA Weekend magazine about the science of beauty. What's that?

Abbott: It's the science of things you can do to make yourself more beautiful. Not just eating right but sleeping right, nutrition, that sort of thing. So they talked to me about how I reduce stress, and how much I sleep, and all this stuff.

NT: And then they judged your responses, like in a beauty pageant! One of them said you needed to cut out all the crap you're eating and you'd be more beautiful. She wrote that junk food makes you ugly.

Abbott: Well, she wanted to see me eating more fruit. You know, like, don't sit down and eat a whole large pizza by yourself.

NT: Which you're doing right now.

Abbott: Well, but it's not a large! This is a medium, and I might take some of it home.

NT: In that article, one of the beauty experts advised you against doing interviews with mean, sarcastic people. Like me. He thought you'd stay pretty longer or something.

Abbott: Well, he was talking about job interviews. We were talking about stressful situations, like if I was applying for a job and a girl was jealous or bitter toward me. I said I'd try to become her friend. He said that wasn't realistic, because sometimes people don't want to be your friend. They said I should just make it snappy and focus on good things and get through it, but don't try to make everyone like you. (Laughs.) So, how am I doing?

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