Love Island’s Shaughna Phillips admits feeling ‘like the token fat girl’ on the ITV show
Shaughna Phillips has revealed she felt like "the token fat girl" during her time on Love Island.
The former contestant admitted she couldn't help feeling like the odd one out even after losing weight before she entered the sun-soaked dating competition.
Fans of the hugely-popular ITV series will know that the hunky men and beautiful women often spend their days lounging around in their skimpy bikinis and swimming trunks in a bid to find love.
The Islanders are often filmed showing a lot of flesh and have previously been criticised by viewers for a lack of diversity in its contestants.
Shaughna, 27, lost four stone before she appeared on the first series of Love Island's winter edition in South Africa last year, but it didn't change how she felt.
The blonde bombshell and villa's sweetheart explained: "I felt I was the token ‘fat girl’ or a tick-box exercise for the show to be more body inclusive."
Going on to say she felt like she had to be “the funny girl as all the other girls were so pretty and skinny", Shaughna also revealed to Closer magazine that she went to see the show's therapist at one stage.
The star sadly ended up crying that she felt "so fat" and was really struggling with her body confidence.
On reflection, Shaughna has realised that her feelings were partly due to suffering from a condition she has called lipoedema, which she has since had liposuction to treat.
She even watched the show back herself and realised her body "looked amazing", but as one of the symptoms of lipoedema is water retention, the heat in South Africa made her legs swell.
As a result, the social media influencer wasn't able to fit into her outfits for the challenges and thought the experience was "hell" at the time.
The star has since started to come to terms with her health issues and said she "felt a sigh of relief" when she was diagnosed with her condition.
She also realised she let her own insecurities "taint" her experience on Love Island after speaking to the ITV show’s therapist.
She's learned that "being pretty or thin doesn't equate to being happy", and is positive about her body image as she added: "I think I look great now!"
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