WHEN Vicky Pattison stormed on to I’m A Celebrity in 2015, she was – in her own words – the “gobshte” contestant “nobody really wanted in there”.
Vicky Pattison says she has ‘broken up with lockdown’ and feels the ‘sexiest’ she’s ever feltCredit: James Rudland
Vicky was dying to go back to blonde and ‘have a bit of a shake-up, a bit of a change’
Her bubbly personality and bikini showers earned her a legion of fans.
But a year of lockdown lounging on the sofa at home left her feeling sluggish and a shell of herself, prompting a lifestyle overhaul and new blonde hairdo.
Now, in an exclusive chat with The Sun, Vicky says she has “broken up with lockdown” and feels the “sexiest” she has ever felt. ‘I lost a real sense of myself in past year’.
She said: “This lockdown was definitely the hardest. It’s inspired me to come out and make some changes with my life.
Vicky says before she won I’m A Celeb she was just seen as ‘the gobshe off Geordie Shore who nobody really wanted in there’Credit: Alamy
Vicky won over viewers and was crowned Queen of the Jungle in 2015Credit: Rex Features
“I was dying to go back to blonde and have a bit of a shake-up, a bit of a change.
“I feel like a sassy new woman. It’s almost like I have broken up with lockdown. I am the sexiest I’ve ever felt.”
Vicky, 33, says she would “jump at the chance” to go back in the TV jungle, adding: “Before I went in the jungle, I was the gobshe off Geordie Shore who nobody really wanted in there.
“Within 24 hours, I was the favourite to win. That’s not a brag — it’s a proper badge of honour for the jungle.
Vicky says she would “jump at the chance” to go back in the TV jungleCredit: Rex
“It’s one of those lovely shows that strips you back and allows viewers to see people for who they really are.
“It’s lovely and heartwarming — as a process, as an experience and as a watch. So I’d be mad not to go in there again.
“If I ever got the call, I’d jump at the chance. I’ll always be grateful to ITV and the jungle.”
Known for her outgoing, spirited personality, even bubbly Vicky found the latest lockdown difficult.
Vicky says she ‘lost a real sense’ of’ herself over the past year during lockdownCredit: Instagram
She says: “Everybody has felt like the last year has been super-difficult and really confusing. I lost a real sense of myself over the past year.
“It was just a really sad, hard time. Every different lockdown had its own personality, I suppose. That’s the best way I can put it.
“The first lockdown was new and, although it was scary, it felt exciting as well, like we were all playing hooky, we were all skiving.
“I was chatting with friends and we were like, ‘Oh my God, what are you watching on Netflix?’ “We couldn’t believe we were able to watch TV during the day.
Vicky has has found love with Towie hunk Ercan Ramadan and the couple moved in together earlier this monthCredit: Instagram
“Because we had the nice weather as well in the first lockdown, it was a novelty. We almost enjoyed it, despite the pandemic.
“But the second one blindsided us and I think everyone was too focused on Christmas to take any real notice.
“The third one — that hit everybody like a ton of bricks. It was cold, it was dark, you couldn’t go out for nice walks, you couldn’t sit in the garden.
“We felt trapped and it just felt never-ending. So it hit a lot of people very hard. I try to stay positive. I’m quite a positive person. But it was difficult.
Vicky was really missing having blonde hair and wanted something new
The chatty star now reveals she struggled with her body image in her early and mid-twenties.
Eight years ago, Vicky was a very slender size six — but she felt miserable, obsessing over exercise and her calorie intake.
She is now much happier at a curvier size ten or 12. Vicky says: “I’ve been very honest that I’m naturally a very curvy person but in periods of my life I’ve felt the desire to look like the glossy pictures of perfection we are bombarded with in magazines.
“A lot of women feel that pressure. I definitely tried to make my body something it didn’t naturally want to be.
Vicky says she’d ‘love to see women understand that beauty is so much more than a clothes size or a number on the scales’
“I’ve worked out excessively and deprived myself of the things I love — cheese boards, gin, so many Haribos! It is sad such a huge part of growing up as a woman is about dieting and numbers on the scales.
“I would love to see that change. I’d love to see women understand that beauty is so much more than a clothes size or a number on the scales.
“It’s how kind you are to others, how you make people feel. “It’s your work ethic, your compassion. It’s all sorts.
“So I do try to have a super-positive and balanced approach to my social media, which I consider my platform and connection with loads of women
Vicky says: ‘You have to embrace your fabulous flaws’
“I’m just one tiny part of a big machine in my industry. “But I always try to have a really balanced and authentic representation of myself on social media.
“Good days and bad days, good angles and bad angles — we’ve all got them. ‘You have to embrace your fabulous flaws’
“Nobody can say they’ve not seen my face without make-up. Nobody can say they’ve not seen my squishy bits and nobody can say, ‘Oh my God, Vicky’s got perfect skin and teeth and isn’t everything amazing!’
“Because I show the other sides of myself: The side where I’ve had a hard day, the side when I’m on my period, the side when I’m feeling super-bloated.
Vicky says: ‘I’m 33, I’m never going to be a size six, I’ve got boobs and a bum and I’ve got no apology about that’
“And as someone who spent a large portion of her life calorie-counting and watching what she ate, it feels really liberating to take the stand and say, ‘I’m 33, I’m never going to be a size six, I’ve got boobs and a bum and I’ve got no apology about that’.”
As well as making peace with her insecurities, the jungle queen says she has found love with Towie hunk Ercan Ramadan, 37. The couple moved into their dream home together earlier this month.
Vicky has had a rocky road to finding love, dating a string of reality stars including Celebs Go Dating love rat Stephen Bear and Towie’s Mario Falcone.
In late 2018, Vicky called off her engagement to Geordie Shore co-star John Noble after a video surfaced of him flirting and dancing with another woman.
Vicky says she is now ‘smug and loved-up’ with ErcanCredit: ercan_ram/Instagram
Vicky says she is now “smug and loved-up” with Ercan but maintains love for herself is the foundation for her happiness these days.
She says women should not feel like they need to be in a relationship to be valued, adding: “Women don’t need a man to fancy them.
“But I know, coming from me, who is all smug and loved-up, it probably means nothing.
“I’ve been guilty in the past of rushing relationships and staying in relationships that were perhaps not right, or toxic, or unhealthy, just because I was scared of a number of things — probably facing being alone or going back on the dating scene again, which as I got older just felt harder and harder every time.
Vicky says: ‘Once you embrace who you are, it’s so much easier for other people to love you’
“And once you’re over 30 — this is so terrible — but I started to feel really rushed and felt a lot of pressure to do the right thing and get married and have a house and kids and all the rest of it.
“But if I could just instil one thing in any woman, it would be that if you are unhappy in yourself, finding a man to love you isn’t going to make you any better.
“It’s just going to gloss over the cracks. You have to be happy with who you are.
“So you have to accept that you are sometimes short and snappy in the mornings. You have to embrace your slight imperfections or your fabulous flaws.
“And once you embrace who you are, it’s so much easier for other people to love you.
“So yes, happiness and confidence don’t come from a man. It’s really just owning who you are.
“And I think that’s got so much easier as I’ve got older. I can’t give women a secret or a little trick. Because honestly, I wish I could — and I would fing bottle it and sell it!”
- The new Fudge Professional campaign with Vicky went live this morning on Fudge Professional’s Instagram account: www.instagram.com/fudgehair/
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