Cheryl shares surprise birthday selfie after months of avoiding public eye

Liam Payne's girlfriend has been avoiding the cameras since baby Bear's birth

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Cheryl’s been pretty much absent from the public eye since the birth of son Bear in March so it was quite the surprise to see her back on social media yesterday for a rare photo.

The former Girls Aloud star surprised fans with an Instagram selfie on Friday, marking the first time we’ve actually seen her face since, well… forever!

Cheryl surprised fans with a 34th birthday selfie
Cheryl surprised fans with a 34th birthday selfie (Credit: Instagram)

Cheryl last appeared on camera in February, when the former X Factor judge FINALLY confirmed her long rumoured pregnancy with boyfriend Liam Payne’s baby in a L’Oreal campaign.

Unfortunately for admirers eager to see Chez’s face again, the popstar went for a disguised social media return, opting for a heavily filtered selfie, using that ubiquitous Snapchat bunny ears filter to thank everyone for their 34th birthday messages.

Cheryl with boyfriend Liam Payne last year
Cheryl with boyfriend Liam Payne last year (Credit: FameFlyNet UK)

Alongside her almost unrecognisable snap, she said: “Birthday bunny. Thank you sooo much for all my lovely birthday wishes.”

And she certainly had a LOT of birthday wishes with more than 129,000 people ‘favouriting’ her snap, and over 4,000 leaving comments.

Read more: Beyonce and Jay Z’s very unique baby names for twins revealed

Among those sending public birthday love to Cheryl were her former Girls Aloud bandmates and besties Kimberley Walsh and Nicola Roberts.

Kimberley led the celebrations with a collage of photos showing her friendship with Cheryl over the years.

She captioned the pictures: “Little pic montage for the birthday girl, Happy Birthday! So many happy memories. Love you loads!”

Kimbo also directly fans to examine the bottom right photo particularly closely, saying it’s her personal favourite.

Fellow popstar Nicola also got in on the throwback action, sharing an old picture taken in Barbados.

“She is going to hate this pic but it captures perfectly that cheeky mood she gets in when she’s happy and enjoyed a cocktail,” said Nic.

“The one where I have to watch her like a hawk! It’s only right for a Birthday post. Sisters from other misters. Love you Bel. Happy Birthday.”

Meanwhile, one person who DIDN’T wish Cheryl a happy birthday online was boyfriend Liam, 23, who didn’t reference her big day on social media.

Of course, that’s probably just because the One Direction star lives with her and just did it in person…

Read more: Liam Payne reveals what baby Bear looks like

Liam said last week he wasn’t going to buy Cheryl any birthday presents – because she already has everything – and would instead focus on creating a special memory involving them and three-month-old son Bear.

“We are going to have a little get together thing for her,” he told US radio station Q102.

Liam wants to create birthday memories for Cheryl
Liam wants to create birthday memories for Cheryl (Credit: Instagram)

“She needs more memories and stuff like that rather than presents. I’ve got to think of memories and things that will bring us all together.”

Liam and Cheryl first met when he auditioned for X Factor as a teenager and she was judging.

Romance blossomed following her split from husband Jean-Bernard Fernandez-Versini in 2015, and the couple’s first child, Bear, arrived on March 22, 2017.