Gemma Collins says brands refused to dress her when she was a size 14.
The reality star, 39, spoke out following the 10th anniversary of the hit show The Only Way Is Essex.
She said she was delighted to be voted the biggest icon of the show.
But she says on the show she never considered herself the “prettiest” of the cast.
Gemma rose to fame on TOWIE
And that brands wouldn’t even lend her clothes for filming or awards shows.
Then a size 14, she pointed out that even though she’s larger now she also has a successful clothing company.
Addressing her some two million Instagram followers she said: “I want to thank you all so much for voting me as number one icon on TOWIE.
“This is a heartfelt message. I was never the prettiest girl on the show.
And she’s now their number one icon
“I never had the best body. Obviously I was confident when I went on the show, but a lot of clothing brands wouldn’t lend me their clothing because they said I was too fat.
“I was a size 14/16, and you know I’m bigger now, and basically I’ve got my own clothing brand.
“So to everyone who wouldn’t lend me clothing or put me in their brands, what you got to say now, huns?”
Her fans flocked her congratulate her on her success and empowering message.
Alison Hammond commented: “So beautiful” and rapper Nolay wrote: “You won it because out of all the females on towie you was the most comfortable in your skin. We love to see it wooop.”
One fan reassured the GC: “Best personality of them all GC …. and deffo one of the prettiest on there xx.”
And a further fan complimented: “You deserve it, you’re legendary!!!”
Gemma joined TOWIE in its second series in 2011.
Departing in 2015, she’s become one of the show’s most successful break-out stars.
She’s not only gone on to have her own successful clothing line but also her own reality series.
Diva Forever has proven an ITV2 hit, as did her lockdown spin-off Diva On Lockdown.
And she also has her own perfume and a very popular podcast on BBC.
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