Andrea McLean is one of the most recognisable faces on daytime TV, brightening up our lunchtimes as the regular anchor on Loose Women.
But she also runs her own business, having launched website This Girl Is On Fire with her husband Nick Feeney last year. More recently, the couple have expanded the site to become a marketplace for female entrepreneurs.
And while many would pause at the idea of working with their partner – as well as living together, during the restrictions imposed due to coronavirus – Andrea reveals how she and Nick are all the stronger for it. And this comes just a few months after she admitted the pair had been seeing a marriage counsellor.
While she confesses launching the marketplace has been ‘stressful,’ and explains how they’ve been working in separate parts of the house to ‘stop driving each other mad,’ she adds, ‘We’ve learned some great things about each other. I admire him so much, I think he’s the most driven and creative person I’ve ever met. I think he’s amazing.’
Andrea continues, ‘And I think that I love him even more now because I can just see how much he wants to protect us all and look after us all, he wants our business to work and all he wants is for everyone to be happy.’
Explaining why the website’s message is so important to her, Andrea says, ‘My whole ethos is, how can I help women lead a better life, no matter what level that is? I feel really strongly that not everybody wants to be a CEO or rule the world. Sometimes you just want to have a better day.’
However, despite trying to inject confidence into other women, Andrea admits that she’s far from confident about her own body, especially since she turned 50 last October.
‘Turning 50 is a biggie and I think you don’t realise how big it is until you actually get there,’ the presenter says. ‘Things do change and you think it won’t happen to you, but it does.
‘Your metabolism definitely slows down and it feels like you have to run to stand still, which is really infuriating because it also ties in with you being more tired than you were before. But I like me more now, so I think that kind of makes up for it.’
She continues, ‘I’d say I’m confident in myself, but probably the least confident in my body that I’ve been for a long time, but I do think that’s due to lockdown. I think I’ve had more time to look at it!
‘I appreciate my body because it works and it’s healthy and alive. But am I body confident, as in skipping down the street in a bikini? No!’ But body confidence issues aside, Andrea insists it’s different when it comes to her beauty regime – and lockdown made her realise she enjoys looking nice purely because it gives her a boost.
She says, ‘It’s funny because I didn’t set out to be a TV presenter – I was a print journalist before and I always had that mindset of, ‘I only get dressed up for work.’ I’m actually really low-maintenance. ‘But now I’ve realised I like looking good because it makes me feel better. During lockdown, most days I put make-up on and I try and put something nice on. It really works wonders on your mood.’
And, as restrictions continue to be eased, what is Andrea most looking forward to doing? She finishes, ‘Once it’s safe to do so, I can’t wait to fly somewhere with blue skies, white sands, blue sea, have a cocktail and just chill out!’
Visit Andrea’s website, thisgirlisonfire.com