Ella Thomas on her Love Island experience: ‘I was completely myself and authentic’

She may not have won the Love Island crown but Ella Thomas did depart the villa hand-in-hand with boyfriend Tyrique Hydeand also scored a lucrative deal with fashion giant Pretty Little Thing, so in many ways she is the real winner. On the subject of winning, the 23 year old certainly won everyone over during her ITV2 stint with her innate sense of style, which saw her make even a simple cargo pant and t-shirt combination look effortlessly cool.

Ella isn’t exactly new to the fashion scene as she was a model prior to appearing on the dating show – hence why her fashion sense feels so grounded. She’s also cemented her post-Love Island style success by joining the exclusive Pretty Little Thing ambassadors gang that consists of fellow Love Islanders Molly-Mae Hague, Gemma Owen and Indiyah Polack.

Shop the look: Shirt, Karen Millen, £68 here, bandeau top, ASOS, £35 here, trousers, ASOS, £32 here, white heels, Primark, £14, available in your local Primark store, earrings

Now, Ella has gone back to her modelling roots in our exclusive OK! shoot and interview, where she gives us insight into going blonde, sharing her clothes with fellow Islanders and what she really thinks about Ty’s style…

Did you take many clothes with you on Love Island or did you rely on the items provided?

I took three suitcases full of outfits, so I came prepared. I had a very big wardrobe before going in because I’m a bit of a shopaholic but I did get a few extra bits and pieces. I used both – eBay Preloved had a lot of nice pieces so we mixed and matched it together.

Did you want to change your usual look while on the show?

I kept with my usual style but I love trying new looks and taking inspiration from Y2K, so I kept that going in the villa.

Did you all share the clothes on the show? Were there any arguments over outfits?

Definitely, if the girls needed any outfits I would always offer up my spare pieces. Sometimes people would take things from eBay Preloved and hide them in their own wardrobes. Not going to lie, I was guilty of it – if you can’t beat them, join them.

Shop the look: Top, similar M&S, £49.50 here, skirt, Mango £35.99 here, earrings, Topshop (similar), £13.50 here

Who do you think had the best style on Love Island?

Other than me, Leah [Taylor] and Ruchee [Gurung]. but I feel like you never got to see many of Ruchee’s looks. They had their own distinctive style and they gave different looks every night.

What have you learnt about yourself being in the limelight since leaving the show?

I’ve learnt that I’m very confident, quite resilient and positive – I focus on the positive things rather than the negative.

Do you have any regrets about the show?

No, I was completely myself and authentic – what you see is what you got. There was nothing I could regret or change, I just acted how I felt in the moment.

Shop the look: Blazer, M&S, £69 here, shorts, M&S, £19.50 here, socks, Pringle, £14.99 for pack of two here, loafer, Primark £15, available in your local Primark store

How have you handled any ‘negative’ feedback?

It doesn’t really get to me, I just brush it off and focus on the positive.

For any girls going into the villa in the future, what advice would you give them?

Be 100% yourself and you will have no regrets and enjoy the experience because it’s a one of a kind.

Do you and Tyrique ever give each other fashion advice?

Yeah definitely, Ty comes to me for approval for all his outfits now.

Shop the look: Top, Zara, £35.99 here, earrings, Primark, £7, available in your local Primark store

Is there anything you think he needs to improve when it comes to his outfit choices?

Push himself out of his comfort zone a little, but he’s got good style and I think he’s a natural with fashion. I’ve definitely noticed that since he’s come out [Love Isla nd villa] he’s been doing that too, so I think I expanded his wardrobe.

Does he give you honest feedback if you’re wearing something he doesn’t like?

Yeah, he’s a straight forward, blunt, honest, person but I’ve not had any bad criticism from him yet about my outfits.

What does fashion mean to you?

It gives me the opportunity to really show myself, my personality and just get creative and have fun.

Shop the look: Bodysuit, Karen Millen, £39.20 here, skirt (part of set), Karen Millen, £69.39 here

We know your curly hair regime is in demand from your followers. Can you tell us what you use?

I use a lot of Shea Moisture products, Cantu, leave-in conditioners, curling creams and hair gel. I get all of my range of products from Boots – they’ve got so many different curly hair options.

Did you take any beauty products or clothing from the Love Island glam room home on the sly?

I took my hair stuff. They provided all the products I use at home, so the ones I had been using I took them home with me, of course. I took my Shea Moisture, my curling gel, my leave-in and the Boots mousse, and I’m still using them. I did try to take one dress but they check your suitcase before you leave.

When you first met Ty you were blonde – any plans to change hair colour again?

I was just blonde recently and Ty liked it. It was just a switch up of the wigs but I will definitely bring it back – I like being blonde.

Shop the look: Trench jacket, Primark, £45, available in your local Primark store, leather gloves, Dents, £85 here

How long does it take you to do your signature ponytail?

It’s super quick, it takes me like 15 minutes. I’ve done it so many times now and I’ve become a pro.

What’s your favourite go to beauty look?

A little bit of concealer under the eye, cream blush and brows.

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