Celebs Go Dating’s Eyal Booker says he has been rejected for being too ‘spiritual’

With Celebs Go Dating back on our screens, we caught up with our favourite Love Island heartthrob to find out his feelings towards Megan and Wes, why he is tired of drama and why he thinks a woman was ‘lying’ when she said he was too spiritual.

How has your Celebs Go Dating experience differed from Love Island?
‘It’s more of a real-life experience. I have time to think about my date, I’m not jumping into bed with them that night! This whole process has been really fun. And it’s celebs going dating – it’s not Love Island, where you’re categorised with ‘love’. So at the moment we’re just learning how to date and enjoy the process of dating.’

Looking back on your time on Love Island, is there someone you would have preferred to have coupled up with now?
‘Ummm…Everyone bar the two girls! No, I always said everything happens for a reason, and it wasn’t meant to be there so I’ve moved on. I don’t sit there and dwell on that.’

Are you surprised Meg and Wes have stayed together for so long?
‘No… It hasn’t really been that long! I’m not actually surprised, there was a big element that they were genuine, it’s just the way they went about things wasn’t the best way to do it. But I always wished them the best of luck and I hope that they continue to go from strength to strength.’

Out of all the celebs on Celebs Go Dating, who would you want to go on a date with?
‘I’d probably go on a date with Olivia if I had to choose one…She’s just got a good vibe.’

When you came on Celebs Go Dating, did you have a specific type in mind?
‘I think Love Island taught me not to go with just what you see. The agency made me realise that potentially I do have a type and it’s good to break away from that type.’

What does someone have to do to catch your eye at a mixer?
‘I want someone who’s quite comfortable in a mixer and ready to have a bit of fun and get to know you. It’s hard because it’s mixed with guys and girls sometimes and they’re already mingling once we walk in. You see a girl chatting to a guy and you’re like, oh, I guess I’ll leave them be!’

Obviously there was drama with you and Alik picking the same girl at the mixer. Can you tell us about that?
‘I came on here for a drama-free life and drama follows me everywhere I go! I think we all stood by our beliefs and morals. None of us have come in here trying to compete with anyone, but you’ve got four guys who all sometimes have the same bunch to pick from, so it’s inevitable at times that you will pick the same person.’

How far would you be willing to go on a first date?
‘Woah! We’re not shooting a porno here. You’ll have to wait and see for that…’

Have you had any awkward phone calls where you’ve got to call them up and tell them you’re not interested?
‘No, but I was told that I’ve got to start being not as nice and more straight-up at the end of a date, whether I see it progressing or not. That’s kind of something I’ve learnt to do. You can word it in a way that they understand. Although some people don’t like it and they give you shit feedback – they come at you!

I’m a really sensitive guy sometimes and one girl really got to me. She just went to the default. Things around that [being spiritual]. We were on a double date and [what she said] just wasn’t legit. And what insulted me most was that she was lying and it’s like just don’t lie – don’t be a liar.’

What have been the main points the agency have told you to work on?
‘They told me that I’ve got to stop being so nice. I was a bit like, “no!” because it’s not nice to not be nice. I still respect the person I’m on a date with, I’m not going to turn and be a horrible guy because I’m not attracted to this girl or we’re not vibing the way I want to vibe.

And then, besides that, obviously the deep and spiritual shit has cropped up. Some people like it, some people don’t. Because of Love Island, there are some girls that I’ve been on dates with that already know me. Then maybe if the date hasn’t gone the way they had hoped, the feedback they give is very generic to what they’ve already seen. And sometimes that can be a bit insulting because it’s like, well, I was sat on that date with you and we didn’t get deep or spiritual!’

Have you gone for any second dates with people you’ve met?
‘Pending. We’re still dating, we’re still in that moment. But there’s one coming up, which is exciting! But we’ll see – it’s still early days.’

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Crazy Rich Asians star Selena Tan on family, the film’s success and when we can expect a sequel

Selena Tan is the Singaporean actress who has been making audiences laugh as the witty Aunt Alix in the blockbuster success, Crazy Rich Asians. We caught up with her to talk about the success of the film and whether there are any sequels in the making…

First off, we have to talk about the crazy success of  Crazy Rich Asians! Why do you think it has been so popular?  
‘It’s one of these things where suddenly the stars have all aligned. First of all, I think everyone who was making the movie was super-talented and really passionate. So the sense that I got when I was on the set was that everyone really breathed their hearts and souls into it and they really wanted to make this movie.’

Were you expecting it to be so popular?
‘Our director, Jon M. Chu, sometimes says he feels as if our summer camp video just went viral! It wasn’t until a couple of months after we wrapped and there was all this chatter on the internet that I was like, “oh my God, I think we’re onto something here.”’

What do you think has been the impact of Crazy Rich Asians?
‘My niece, who lives in a smaller town in the UK, when she found out [about the movie] she was so excited. She wrote and said she always wanted to be an actress but she didn’t think it was possible because she’s Asian, and now she’s rethinking it. There have been a lot of heart-warming stories from all over the world actually, so I think that’s one of the main reasons why the film has been so successful.’

Yes, of course! And do you think this film shows there is a market for productions with a majority Asian cast?
‘Oh, for sure. A lot of productions with an Asian slant got green-lit after Crazy Rich Asians, which is I think an amazing testament to how important it is. I think Hollywood is becoming more diverse, with films like To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. But Crazy Rich Asians, a big studio film, I think this is really going to make some headway.’

How did you feel about filming in your home country, Singapore?
‘I love the fact that the whole thing is centred around Singapore. I felt a real sense of pride about it. I was born and bred, I work there, I eat there…So, I started to feel not only is it going to be great for Asian representation around the world, but for my country!’

What has been the reaction to Crazy Rich Asians in Singapore?
‘I can’t say for certain, but I would say about 70 – 80% really like it because it shows Singapore in a really great light. It’s almost like free advertising, and they love the fact that Singaporean actors are in it and that our lingo is there, our food is there. But of course there has been big talk and discontentment that it’s not completely representational of Singapore racially because we’re mainly Chinese people in the movie – actually, we’re almost all Chinese people in the movie – and in Singapore, of course, we’re a mix of Chinese, Malaysian, Indian, Caucasian…But the truth is that this book was written by Kevin and this is Kevin’s point of view about a rich Asian family.’

As you live in Singapore, were there any bits in the film that you particularly related to?
‘No matter which section of society you are in, family is number one. It doesn’t really matter if you’re rich or you’re poor, your family comes first. If you come from a very rich family that has a big business, I think it’s expected that you come back and take over the family business.’

So is that how you grew up?
‘No, I know of really rich families but that’s not how I grew up. We grew up on a sort of lower/middle income. We all studied in Singapore – it was not as if going abroad was an option, unless we were on scholarships. But we were fine, we didn’t want for anything.’

And looking to the future, do you think there will be Crazy Rich Asians sequels?
‘I heard about a month ago that Warner has already green-lit a sequel but they are in development at the moment in LA. They’re not entirely sure yet but if they do, I guess it will be in about a year or so. But I heard it was green-lit!’

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Ryan Libbey on the new series of Made in Chelsea and his plans to marry Louise

Who tuned into the return of Made in Chelsea last night? If, like us, you loved having the show back on your screens, you’ll be thrilled to know that we caught up with one half of the show’s fitspo couple, Ryan Libbey, to find out what he thinks of his fellow co-stars, what to expect from the next few episodes, and his plans for wedding Louise in 2019! 

Firstly, congratulations on your engagement! Can you give us any wedding details?
‘Not really! We’re so slow out of the blocks. We don’t know whether to do it abroad, in the countryside, have it in the summer or a snowy winter. We have ideas, but nothing is definite yet. Apart from the fact that it will be next year. I’m a terrible planner – I need to start fixing that. Since we got engaged, ten of our friends have got engaged too, and they’re all so on it. To think, we got engaged first and we aren’t even that far along yet! It’s scary.’

The next series of Made in Chelsea starts on Monday. Are you and Louise more involved this time?
‘We’re currently filming at the moment. I think we’re on episode seven now. As Louise and I are engaged, they’re following that story line. We’re viewed as the only real couple I think, the sort of happy ending for MIC. So, of course they want to keep us involved!’

What can we expect from the new series?
‘As always, there’s a load of drama that goes on, and a lot of it is petty and exaggerated. But there’s one theme that continues throughout and that’s me and Louise. We are heavily involved in the new series and I think I’ve found my footing on the show, finally. It’s so full on at the moment – we’re filming all the time.’

Do you worry about how you’re perceived by viewers?
‘This is either my downfall or why I’m being used more on the show recently, but I don’t know any other way than to be real and honest – it’s who I am. Some people who have been in the game longer know where to go big on the show and when to retreat in terms of the storyline. But I’m just a straight shooter and it’s always black and white with me.’

That reminds us, in the last episode in Croatia, you had a fiery conversation with Harry Baron. Where did that all come from?
‘I’ve always thought Harry is a bit snakey. Sam had been back and forth from Croatia with all the negativity and baggage from the whole Habbs situation. A lot of it was his doing, he did misbehave in Vegas, he is a kid and does need to be told every now and then.

But at the same time, he’s family to me. So, I told him I’d have his back and that I’d tell Harry he needs to check his approach to relationships, his girlfriend and Sam. I don’t know why he’s such a smarmy character, it doesn’t suit him. So, I told him to scrape it back and be real with me. The way the scenes were edited means it’s pieced together to make it look more controversial though. I’m not nasty or malicious, I just told him straight.’

You and Louise must be the fittest Insta couple, and we’re so jealous of your physiques! But come on… you must eat naughty foods occasionally?
‘Yeah, often, too often. When Louise wants to eat ice cream I always do it, because I have a relaxed and balanced approach to my diet. But over the last four weeks I’ve team up with Fresh Fitness Food, and now I’m starting to appreciate the importance of how the right nutrition can impact your recovery between training.

Currently, I eat five meals a day and have all the macronutrients worked out for me. The impact has been incredible when it comes to my training and my sleep. It makes you realise how important diet really is. You can have a balanced approach to it and enjoy life, which is what I’ve done for a few years. But if you want to go the route of being a pro sportsman or compete in something, you have to make these small changes.’

We caught up with Ryan while he trained at MANOR London, a gym with locations in Vauxhall, Victoria, Old Street and Oxford Circus. To find out more visit @mymanorlondon on Instagram or online at mymanor.london

Made in Chelsea is back on Mondays at 9pm on E4

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Vas J Morgan says Celebs Go Dating is “so real” compared to TOWIE

The charismatic star of The Only Way is Essex always seemed to be the life and soul of the show. But Vas J Morgan says he is actually “really shy” and Celebs Go Dating has made him more confident. Here, he opens up about his first ever dating experience and why he would not take a boyfriend on TOWIE.

Wrong first impressions

Vas J Morgan says men are surprised when they go on a date with him, as he is so different to his television personality on TOWIE.

“I think people thought I was more of a bitch than I am. Like, I’m really shy and I think I came across maybe on TOWIE as a bit more in your face,” he says.

“But I’m really quite shy when you first meet me. And I think that was a bit of a shock for most people,” he adds.

This cropped up in his feedback from the agents on the show, he says, as they said he should be more confident. Vas says he finds it difficult to be confident on dates.

“I’d never been on dates before, it’s hard to walk in when you don’t know what people expect.”

Confidence boost

But he says the show has given him “so much more confidence”, compared to before.

“The first few dates I was like a mute, I couldn’t speak. But now I’m all right,” he says.

“I literally sometimes feel like I’m in a therapy session when I leave [new dating expert] Paul. I’m like, yeah, I really learnt so much about myself. Then I go on the next date and I’m like, it’s all gone!”

Going into mixers has made him more confident, too, as it forced him to chat to strangers.

“When I first walked in there I was shitting myself, but now I literally go out clubbing and start talking to people.”

First dating experience

Vas reveals that he had never been on a date before Celebs Go Dating.

“I just wasn’t really ready in my own self to go on dates and stuff. But now I am,” he explains.

He describes his first date on the show, a dinner date, as “really good” and “pretty boring” in the same sentence.

Vas has been criticised for not putting enough effort into his dates, which he acknowledges.

“I was not being present,” he explains.

“When I first walk into situations, if I’m not immediately physically attracted to someone then I switch off, which is really bad, obviously,” he says. “But I’m working on it with the agency.”

Celebs Go Dating is “more real” than TOWIE

For dates that haven’t gone well, Vas says the producers do not help out – unlike in TOWIE.

“On TOWIE if you’re on a scene and it’s stalling and it’s a bit weird, you can seek help a little bit from producers. But this is so opposite – you’re literally just alone on these dates.

“If it’s stalling then it just stalls, you can’t look at the producers. They don’t respond. And then you don’t want to be rude and be like ‘I’m not feeling this’, so you’ve got to sit out these sometimes uncomfortable dates with no help.

“It’s like being on an actual real date. You don’t even realise anyone else is in the room other than the date, so it’s so scary.”

Why TOWIE is a relationship curse

If Vas found The One on Celebs Go Dating, would he bring him on TOWIE? He’s not so sure.

“I don’t know. I think TOWIE is not very good luck for a relationship. It always seems to go wrong when you go on there, for everyone.

“I’d probably keep them away from Essex.”

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Jamelia discusses her childhood and the importance of breakfast clubs

She may be best-known as a pop icon and former Loose Women panellist, but Jamelia Davis has now teamed up with Kellogg’s to celebrate the country’s best breakfast clubs. She opens up about sending the kids back to school, juggling work with raising a family and why breakfast clubs were a staple of her childhood.

How are you feeling about the kids going back to school?
‘I always find back to school a little bittersweet if I’m being honest. As much as I feel like a get a sense of the return to normality (and a clean and tidy home), I do miss all the quality time we spend together. But knowing that my children love school makes it a lot less hard to bear.’

How do you juggle having a career with raising a family?
‘I’m not superwoman, I am literally the same as every other parent. You always find a way to get things done. It’s hard at times, but I’m very fortunate that my job allows me the flexibility to pick and choose when I work. Also organisation is a must, so I do everything in my power to not miss special occasions – and so far I’ve never missed a birthday or a school play. It is important your children have you there to share those moments with them, and I wouldn’t want to miss out!’

What would be your advice to parents who are juggling work with family life?
‘You can do it. Children are not anchors, setbacks or disturbances, and as long as we don’t treat them as such, anything is possible. And it’s great to show our families we can juggle, prioritise and work hard.’

Are you working on any projects at the moment?
‘I’m doing far too much at the moment, but I do love being busy! I’m creating for my Youtube channel, which I love doing, I’m writing two books, working on a couple of business ventures with my daughters and I’m also in the process of creating a haircare range with my husband, among a million other things!’

Very impressive! You have also teamed up with Kellogg’s to launch their Breaskfast Club Awards. Did you ever attend a breakfast club?
‘Growing up, breakfast club was a key part of our family life and was a great driver in growing my confidence as a child. Everyone loves to be part of a club. My mother was a single, working parent, so breakfast club provided support and enabled her to go back to work, while ensuring I had the best start to the day.’

Do your children attend a breakfast club?
‘Breakfast clubs are invaluable and I have used them for my girls. I actively promote breakfast and why it’s the most important meal of the day. It sets you up emotionally and physically. I can’t function without a decent breakfast and it’s a healthy habit that I want to ensure I pass onto my girls.’

Why did you want to launch the Kellogg’s Breakfast Club Awards?
‘It is fantastic to be launching the Kellogg’s Breakfast club awards, an event dedicated to celebrating the wonderful, and inspiring, work that goes on in breakfast clubs up and down the country. This year marks 20 years of Kellogg’s supporting breakfast clubs, so the awards is going to be extra special. I urge school breakfast clubs to get their entries in now – we can’t wait to hear all about your amazing clubs!’

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National Reality TV Awards: Interviews with Susanna Reid, Debbie McGee and Celebrity Big Brother stars

Last night, the stars were out in full force at the National Reality TV Awards. The red carpet was full of familiar faces, including some of our favourites from Love Island, Celebrity Big Brother and Strictly Come Dancing

From this year’s Love Island, Hayley Hughes was packing on the PDA with her boyfriend Tom Zanetti, while Samira Mighty looked stunning in her glittery black jump-suit, as she prepared to host the event.

Sophie from Geordie Shore blazed through the red carpet, and former Ex on the Beach star Charlotte Dawson stunned in a white jumpsuit. Dan Osborne and Ben Jardine were having a giggle on the staircase, and fellow Celebrity Big Brother stars Chloe Ayling and Jermaine Pennant were unsurprisingly giving each other a wide berth.

We navigated the busy red carpet to have a chat with some of the celebs.

Susanna Reid on working with Piers Morgan

Susanna Reid won Best TV Presenter, beating co-presenter Piers Morgan! She also picked up award for Best Talk Show and Best Celebrity Personality

Last night, Susanna Reid went home with the most prestigious award – best TV presenter.

She called it ‘the big one’ and explained she needed to win, since she was up against her co-presenter Piers Morgan.

‘I’d be absolutely gutted [if Piers won]. It would just be awful. If I can win this it will prove to him the best presenter is not him. It’s not,’ she added, mimicking his voice, ‘”Me, me, me…”‘

On describing her relationship with Piers, she said, ‘We do have chemistry, but it’s just work chemistry – I’d like to point that out!

‘Piers and I come across as TV’s husband and wife, but my sympathies go out to his wife because I just have to work with him – she has to live with him.’

Susanna wasn’t the only big winner last night, as Love Island also picked up four awards. Surprisingly, Susanna revealed she is a big fan of the show.

‘I think it’s absolutely brilliant,’ she said, ‘and it teaches me everything I need to know about dating.

‘I’m always texting Caroline, saying please get me on Aftersun!’

Debbie McGee on Strictly and if she’d go on I’m a Celebrity

Debbie McGee was happy to be united with Joe McFadden, Helen Lederer and Stanley Johnson

Debbie McGee has been impressed by this year’s Strictly Come Dancing and says she still talks to her former dance partner Giovanni ‘all the time’ and ‘dipped in and out’ of his dance tour this year.

Her dancing experience is being put to use in a pantomime in Wolverhampton, where Debbie will play Fairy Crystal in Sleeping Beauty. ‘I’m actually going to do a variation of one of my dances from Strictly,’ she revealed.

Will she be returning to our screens this year in a certain jungle in Australia? It would seem not. ‘I’m a Celeb is a different thing – you’re not learning a talent,’ she said. ‘I think I’d get bored. I’m really not into having rats running over me and spiders and stuff like that. And I don’t like being away from my hairdryer for too long!’

Chloe Ayling on Jermaine Pennant and Roxanne Pallett

Chloe Ayling on the red carpet last night in a low-cut red dress

In this year’s Celebrity Big Brother, English footballer Jermaine Pennant came under fire for seeming to flirt with Chloe Ayling and concealing the fact he had a wife.

When Chloe left the house she described Jermaine’s behaviour as ‘disgusting’, but last night revealed he still has not apologised for what happened.

‘I was expecting an apology,’ she said. ‘I apologised for calling him disgusting, but I didn’t get an apology back.’

She also spoke out about Roxanne Pallett, and explained that they were close in the Celebrity Big Brother house.

‘I really liked Roxanne – she was really genuine and one of my closest friends,’ she said. ‘She was a really sweet girl but she definitely made a mistake.’

She felt sorry for Roxanne for being so scrutinised by the media. ‘I’ve been in that position,’ she recalled, referring to the media attention following her kidnapping.

Dan Osborne on family life with Jacqueline Jossa

Dan Osborne and baby Mia

Rumours have been flying around about whether Dan Osborne and his wife Jacqueline Jossa are back together, but last night Dan confirmed it was true.

Husband and wife rekindled their romance as soon as he got out of the house, he said. ‘We’ve just spent time with each other since I’ve been out. We’ve managed to carry on from how we were before I went in.’

He was clearly overjoyed with their newest addition to the family, a daughter called Mia. ‘She’s amazing,’ Dan gushed last night. ‘Unbelievable. She’s holding her little head up now!’

Ben Jardine on life after Celebrity Big Brother

Ben Jardine is excited for life after Celebrity Big Brother

Newly single Ben Jardine talked about his experience of the Celebrity Big Brother house. ‘Being in the house was an amazing experience,’ he said. ‘You do find a lot about yourself – it’s such a magnified ambience.’

Since returning home, he said life has been ‘absolutely crazy’ as he has been up to ‘liquorice allsorts.’ Although he was keen to keep his future plans under wraps, he did let slip that he has a documentary in the pipeline and that he might be jetting off to L.A.

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Hollyoaks’ Ashley Taylor Dawson on Darren’s affair with Mandy and why he wants Nancy back

It’s the storyline that has turned Hollyoaks upside down. For months, family man Darren Osborne has been having an affair with his childhood sweetheart Mandy. And in last night’s episode, his wife Nancy found out and told him to pack his bags. We caught up with Ashley Taylor Dawson, who has been playing Darren Osborne for almost 20 years, to find out what the future may hold for  the soap’s power couple…

Darren has been with Nancy for a long time. Why do you think he is cheating on her with Mandy?
‘Mandy and Darren are both going through very turbulent times in their relationships, where they’re questioning the reasons they’re in the relationship – is it just to keep their families together, is it for the kids, and are they happy? But from leaning on each other, they did develop this bond. And at first I think it is a sort of caring, looking out for each other, and then that turns into this relationship that they believe is real love.’

And do you think Darren still loves Nancy?
‘Without a doubt. Darren obviously loves Nancy and his family, but whether he’s in love with his wife now… maybe his relationship is on the rocks.’

Nancy kicked Darren out in last night’s episode. Do you think they are going to get back together?
‘Darren will do everything in his power to get back with Nancy. He fell back in love with his wife through Nancy taking on Brooke [their adoptive daughter] – it just showed him what a heart she’s got. And they say you don’t know what you’ve got till you’ve lost it. So at that point, when it all comes out and he realises what he’s done, without a doubt he will do everything in his capability to get her back and fight for her.’

Darren begged Nancy for forgiveness on last night’s episode but was kicked out of their house

What’s it like playing such a bad boy?
‘The funny thing is, Darren used to be a bit of an a-hole. But since he’s become a family man he’s the kind of guy who does everything for the right reasons but goes about it the wrong way. So the way I try to play him is to tell an honest story about people that are struggling in long-term relationships, because marriage is a very hard thing. You have to keep on working at it, you have to keep re-inventing yourself. And if you get lazy and you look elsewhere, then I suppose it’s very easy to do that. But it’s only when you’ve lost it that you realise what you had.’

What has been the reaction from your fans to this storyline?
‘People come up to me and are like, “Oh, you’ve been a bad boy”. It’s nice getting a reaction. And on social media people have started liking the Mandy and Darren thing. I’m trying to make it so it’s not an easy decision, so it’s not something where you can say ‘That’s out of order’ or ‘that’s wrong’.

Has this storyline worked as a moral warning for you?
‘Yeah. I’ve got three children and my own family and I wouldn’t do anything to harm that ever. When you’re playing a role like that, you do get caught up in the guilty side. I was like ‘It’s okay, it’s okay, it’s Darren.” You come out of work stressed out, thinking: what am I doing? It does give you a moral compass, whether you like it or not.’

It sounds intense! For how many hours a week are you filming?
‘The average day is around 12 hours a day – you’re in at 8am and you finish at 7pm. That can be every day, depending on the script.’

You’re one of the longest-serving cast members in Hollyoaks, do you think you’ll ever want to leave the show?
‘I’ve had a great time on Hollyoaks. I love the place I work, I love the people – the cast, the crew… And as long as I keep on getting great storylines and I’m happy there, then if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!’

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Angellica Bell talks Celebrity Masterchef and why kids need to get cooking

Angellica Bell

One year on from her Celebrity Masterchef win, Angelica Bell is set to co-present and judge the cookery show The Big Family Cooking Showdown with Tommy Banks. In our exclusive chat she reveals why her friends no longer invite her round for dinner and what it’s like to tap dance when you’re five months pregnant.

You have joined Barbie’s campaign to encourage kids to get cooking. What inspired you to do that?
‘We need to get our children to cook more. There’s so much in the news about child obesity and if we teach them basic cooking skills, they’ll be prepared for life, they’ll have more confidence and more independence. So I thought it was a great campaign and I just wanted to be involved.’

What kind of work have you guys been doing in the campaign?
‘We had an event where we invited some children to come along and we cooked with them. We taught them how to make pizzas and we chatted to them about food. They were so engaged. And what it showed was that children, if you just give them some time and show them what to do, are so focused and want to see an end result.’

What do you think children should be able to cook by the age of 12?
‘For every household it will be different and we have to bear that in mind with resources, economies etc. But I think they should be able to cook eggs, pasta dishes, things that children love to eat. And maybe a bit of baking as well.’

At what age do you think parents should teach their child how to cook?
‘It depends on the child – you have to think about their attention span. But I think generally you can start teaching children the basics from about four or five. There are different elements to cooking with children that you have to be aware of, like knife skills and making sure they’re safe. We also really want to encourage parents to cook with their children. It’s just thinking of ways to get them slowly involved.’

Angellica got stuck in, making pizza with kids at the Barbie cooking event

At what age did you learn to cook?
‘I started learning quite young actually – probably about five or six. My gran was a cook and she was the first person that got me into food. She taught me how to bake and also she taught me my knife skills. I think by the time I was seven I could peel an apple in one! I remember she had a blackberry bush in her garden and I’d go and pick the blackberries and then we’d make blackberry pie or apple and blackberry crumble. I really cherish the moments I shared with her in the kitchen.’

What is your guilty pleasure food?
‘Carrot cake – it’s one of the first things I learnt to make as a child and I still love it. Sometimes if I’m covering for Alex on The One Show, I’ll make a carrot cake in the morning and bring it to work. But now when I do go in to cover for her and I don’t have cake, that’s the first thing everyone says to me – where’s the cake?’

How did you feel about co-presenting and judging the upcoming BBC2 show, The Family Cooking Showdown?
‘There were times where I was off camera and just laughing my head off. But I’m also nervous because it’s new territory – I am critiquing food. And I did struggle a little bit because you have to be honest every time. I got to love the families and then if something went wrong I was like ‘no!’ That was tricky.’

I suppose you couldn’t compete on the show after your Celebrity Masterchef win!
‘I know, I don’t think I’ll be allowed to cook on any cooking show now. It’s like friends – I don’t get invited to anybody’s house to eat now [because they’re scared I’ll judge the food]. It’s really quite sad!’

What was your experience of winning Celebrity Masterchef?
‘You know when you see those films and it goes into slow mo – that’s what happened to me because I never thought I would win. I was so happy, I was overwhelmed. I ran up and gave Greg and John a hug – I don’t think many people have done that but I just had to do it!’

Are you watching Celebrity Masterchef this year?
‘Of course I am! I was totally reliving those stressful, emotional, tired, hard-working moments that they’re all going through now. It’s strange watching it, but they’re all doing such a good job. I couldn’t say who’s going to win now because I think these rounds coming up in the semi-finals and finals really test everybody and it could go either way.’

What would you say has been the highlight of your career so far?
‘The highlight has to be Masterchef because I did win it. Or maybe when I learnt to tap-dance with Michael in a random show we did – Born To Shine. I was five months pregnant and I thought I just really want to learn how to tap dance – it will keep me fit and I can do it. I made sure my bump was strapped, and I loved it. It’s probably the last full-on thing Michael and I did before we had a family.’

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Love Island’s Chyna Ellis on boob jobs, psoriasis and life in the public eye

Chyna Ellis Love Island

She first appeared on our screens in last year’s Love Island, then had further wild antics on Ibiza Weekender. Now, Chyna Ellis is settling down with her new beachwear brand and ihas a new-found interest in beauty. Here, she speaks exclusively about her struggle with psoriasis, and explains why she got cosmetic surgery.

What’s behind your new-found interest in beauty?
‘I’ve been working with loads of beauty brands recently and trying out new products because I suffer with psoriasis and have really bad skin. So I’m trying loads of creams that have an all-natural base.’

We never noticed you had bad skin when you were on Love Island – how did you cover it up?
‘When I was on Love Island and Ibiza Weekender I was so self-conscious about it, but nobody knew I had it because I did so well to cover it up. I use a lot of makeup. I also use Sally Hansen, which is a fake tan. It’s so good, I know Kim Kardashian uses it because she has psoriasis. And it literally covers the patches in your skin.’

When were you diagnosed with psoriasis?
‘I’ve had it since I was 13 and I’m 24 now. I lived in Spain for five years and it was really hot there, then when I moved back to the UK I had red itchy patches all over my body.’

How do you cope with the symptoms?
‘I think it’s a lot to do with diet. It’s not just about what you put on your skin, it’s about how you look after your body. So I drink three litres of water a day, I eat a lot of vegetables and I train a lot as well. It’s about keeping your body and mindset positive.’

What particularly triggers your psoriasis?
‘I think alcohol is a trigger for me because it must dry my skin out. Also I recently had my boobs done, and when I came out of the operation I flared up with psoriasis. I didn’t realise that my skin would be so sensitive to an operation.’

Why did you decide to have breast augmentation surgery?
‘Before I had the job, my boobs were really small – I think they were a really small B because I’m quite petite. Now, I think I’m a big C or a small D. I feel a lot more confident with them, and I do think if people want to have surgery they should have it done. But it is something you have to look into, be absolutely sure about and go with the right surgeon who’s got experience.’

Do you think you had the surgery for the confidence boost?
‘Yeah, 100%. I hadn’t been fully confident in myself with my boobs – I used to put chicken fillets in my bra and get them from Primark. But now I don’t have to do that, so I’m really happy with the results. And my boobs look natural – I went for a really small implant and fat transfer.’

Megan from this year’s Love Island has received a lot of criticism for her plastic surgery. Did you understand what she was saying about how surgery made her feel more confident?
‘Definitely. I think as long as you’re doing it for the right reasons and it’s for yourself then you should get what you want to get. I do agree that there is a certain limit to it, though – people need to be careful with how far they take it, cosmetic surgery is so addictive. And with social media now, people like me or other celebrities get offered a lot for free. I’ve been offered a lot for free, like veneers, that I have turned down because I thought to myself, if I keep saying yes to everything, I’m just going to be a completely different person.’

It must be hard to adjust to life after a reality TV show. Was there any psychological support from the Love Island team after the show?
‘They do support you when you come out and they support you before you go into the villa – they give you a massive leaflet, they tell you the pros and cons and you see a psychologist to make sure that you’re mentally stable. So everyone who goes into the villa is utterly aware of the possible outcomes from being on a TV show and is mentally prepared.’

And afterwards, do you get to see a psychologist regularly or is it a one-off?
‘For me, I only saw one the evening we came out. But then, I don’t think it’s their responsibility to provide you with psychological help for the foreseeable future. If you signed up for something that you’re more than happy to do, then I think that’s down to the person that signed up for it.’

What is your life like now you’re in the public eye?
‘It has changed so much in a year. I’ve had so many opportunities and I don’t regret anything. For this year’s Love Islanders, they’re on a massive scale now – the majority of them have come out with a million followers. It’s even more intense, so I can only imagine what they’re going through because there’s a lot more pressure on them. If I felt the pressure, then they definitely feel the pressure.’

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James Lock says relationship with Yazmin Oukhellou is ‘not toxic’ and hints marriage is on the cards

James Lock / Lockie TOWIE

With The Only Way Is Essex making an explosive return to our screens, we caught up with James Lock (aka Lockie) to find about if he regrets fighting with Dan Edgar and why his relationship with Yazmin isn’t toxic.

What can we expect from this series of TOWIE?
‘There’s quite a bit of drama at the minute. There’s always a lot of drama in TOWIE. In this series there’s a lot of people that come back, there’s a lot of new people, and there’s a lot of tension.’

Speaking of tension, this week you were spotted having a big row with Dan Edgar. What were you arguing about?
‘I can’t go into too much detail. But, you know something, arguments always seem like a big deal at the time and then now looking back on it, it wasn’t really worth the aggravation. I don’t think I can say too much because it’s in this week’s episode.’

While there has already been a lot of drama on the show, there was also a group holiday. How was Sardinia?
‘I was pleasantly surprised. I actually enjoyed it more than going to the usual Marbella. It was more of a relaxing, couples’ sort of trip. Obviously we still went out, we still had nice meals and a good drink and that, but it wasn’t too much. When we go Marbella it’s all a bit crazy.’

We can imagine! And how are things going with you and Yazmin?
‘Me and Yaz are good. Like any couple we have ups and downs. You wouldn’t be a normal couple if you didn’t.’

On Sunday’s episode, Yazmin’s parents said you and Yazmin could rush into marriage and they were worried because you have such a rocky relationship. Do you think marriage is on the cards?
‘Everything has got to be at the right time for the couple. As much as our parents are a big part of our lives, it depends on us. And if we’re at a point where we want to get married, regardless of what anyone has to say, we’re going to do it.’

Do you think you’re moving too fast?
‘No, I don’t think I am. I think every couple goes at its own pace. Our pace might not necessarily be the pace that other people might agree with, but it’s down to us. As much as we appreciate other people’s opinions, it’s our lives and we’ve got to do what makes us happy. I’m sure if we did tie the knot soon our parents would be very much behind us.’

 Could you see why her parents may have concerns?
‘Of course! Sometimes me and Yazmin are very passionate people and we do go hot and cold. But that fiery and passionate relationship works for us. I know people look in and they’ve used the word toxic, but it’s not toxic at all. People sometimes have a misconception and they don’t really understand it and because they don’t understand it they judge it. We spend every day together, me and Yazmin, and we’ve been like that for the last two years. So we’re obviously doing something right, ‘cos most couples can’t bear to be around each other, can they?’

And what would you say to viewers who brand your relationship as ‘toxic’? 
‘You’ve got to remember that as much as it’s a reality TV show, it’s still a TV show. Some people don’t always get me when they first meet me. It takes a little while of knowing me before you can fully understand me. And that’s the same with mine and Yaz’s relationship – you need to know us as people. You only see what you see on an hour-long episode every week. So you don’t really know us. You can’t really judge someone unless you truly know them.’

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