Nadine Coyle on beauty fails, hating the gym and fangirling over Tom Jones

'It's like a daytime nightclub with people in workout gear trying to hook up'

Nadine Coyle Beauty Bytes
(Image credit: Getty Images)

'It's like a daytime nightclub with people in workout gear trying to hook up'

She made us all laugh out loud during her time in the I'm a Celebrity jungle but Nadine Coyle is probably best known for being one of the biggest girl bands of all time, Girls Aloud.

As she's just released her new single, All That I know, we met up for a chat about all things skincare, make-up, movies and more. Keep reading for her favourite beauty products and tips, and the multipurpose skincare product she won't be without.

LA: What's the worst beauty trend you’ve ever tried?

NC: I saw this [again] recently, I had this very strong, dark brow. I have dark eyes anyway so it was all very strong, very vampy. Way too heavy on the contour, I was kind of new to the whole contour concept, so it was that entire phase kind of being heavily contoured. I mean, it's fine for a picture, but the minute you see somebody in real life like that, it's absolutely ridiculous. Like a Halloween mask. I've done that.

LA: That’s what make-up artists all say; it can be great for the camera but the second you step outside, woah. What about the best beauty advice you’ve ever received?

NC: Loads of good tips! Find a moisturiser that works for you. You have to search far and wide and have two or three in your repertoire because once your skin gets used to one, you have to switch out and move on to something else. I like to try to stick to something that's as natural as possible. Nothing too synthetic with too many products in it. If your skin is good then you're kind of good for the rest. Just let that be your main focus.

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LA: What's in your make-up bag right now?

NC: Everybody laughs at me because I don’t really wear much make-up. I have to be forced and usually people buy make-up for me because they’re like, this is ridiculous.

LA: It's nice when you have to put lots on for work to then have nothing on. If I'm not in the office I’m putting nothing on, I like to look like a potato with glasses. It's totally fine.

NC: Even doing things [on TV] I’m often forced to wear more make-up, I'm like, I don’t really mind. I’m alright for people to see the real me, I'm not going to watch it back to see myself anyway! So in my make-up bag I always have lip liner, a lip balm of some description, bronzing powder and concealer. That is my make-up bag. It ends there.

LA: That's kind of the basics covered, though. All of what you need.

NC: The lip liner, the balm, you’re good to go. Lip balm can double up for taming the brows, too.

LA: What's your favourite bronzer, do you have a go-to in there?

NC: There is one Charlotte Tilbury and one MAC one that I really like.

Charlotte Tilbury Film Star Bronze and Glow, £49, Cult Beauty

Nadine Coyle Beauty Bytes Charlotte Tilbury

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LA: What about the best make-up tip that a professional make-up artist has given you?

NC: Caroline Barnes, she’s brilliant, she taught me to take the end of your mascara wand and use it on your lashes head-on and put it over your eyes like this to let the mascara catch, and then you brush it through [with the wand horizontal]. I think I was 17 when she told me that, and every time I put on mascara I always think of Caroline.

LA: Great tip! How do you look after your skin? Do you have a morning and night time routine?

NC: I love the Dermalogica Special Cleaning Gel. It's just so good, it dissipates in your hand and you just feel it fall away. I love a really good wash with that and a face cloth, love a good face cloth. Just start with your face and work your way around, it's all about that. It’s simple, my routine is really quite simple. Then I just let my skin breathe. There are a few L’Oreal face masks that I like. There's a charcoal one that's really good at clearing with out messing with your skin. I don’t like to do anything too rich or to crazy. And SPF, massive SPF fan. We lived in LA for a long time and the sun is really strong so every day, day and night I would wear factor 30.

Dermalogica Special Cleansing Gel, £33, Feelunique

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LA: When you came out of the jungle did you find your skin had cleared itself out a little bit?

NC: My skin was [already] fine, I had been fine. I just find that seeing yourself after so long with no make-up and in the raw jungle, there is kind of like a weather-beaten look. Other people are all nice and fresh, and I suppose [I looked] just weather-beaten. But it was good, I didn’t know how everything [skin-wise] was going to react, out for three weeks outdoors day and night. All that fresh air was really good.

LA: Do you have a favourite skincare product?

NC: I like the Dermalogica Special Cleanser and I also like the Egyptian Magic cream. I always have a tub of that.

LA: What are your three favourite beauty brands?

NC: I like Charlottte Tilbury, I just find it's such good quality. Iconic London I love for make-up, they do really nice sprays, nice eyebrow stuff and glowy stuff. I love their illuminator. I like Origins, right now I am using their Drink Up Intensive Mask. You really pack on the moisture, which is good when you’re blasting the heating every day.

LA: How do you take care of your hair?

NC: I wash it! I recently got some products from Kérastase. They’ve given me the Blond Absolu, which is really nice as I'm nowhere near a natural blonde. I’ve been using that to help with the bleaching and the colouring and it's been really nice.

Kérastase Blonde Absolu Bain Lumière Shampoo, £17.90, Lookfantastic

Nadine Coyle Beauty Bytes Kerastase

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LA: How often do you work out? Do you have a favourite way to work out?

NC: I wouldn’t say I'm a gym go-er or a gym-crazy person. I like to swim. Love a swim, any time I can do that is a good thing. I'm generally quite active and try to squeeze in a workout when I'm waiting for stuff. Like if you’re cooking dinner, try to squeeze in a few squats or a few yoga moves. Or if you’re brushing your teeth. You know, just trying to do more than one thing at once.

LA: You can do stuff at home much more easily.

NC: Like, what am I going to use? Weights? I don’t need big massive weights or machines that I would just hurt myself on. Or to show off at the gym. There are girls with all this make-up on and crop tops on, no, it's not my scene at all. It's like a daytime nightclub with people in workout gear trying to hook up.

LA: What about fragrance? Do you have a signature perfume?

NC: I like Miss Dior, love that one. And today I’ve got a Jo Malone on, English Pear and Freesia.

LA: That was my first Jo Malone fragrance when I was younger. Such a nice one. Does your beauty routine change when you’re on holiday?

NC: I try to not to wear make-up, I mean I'm not a huge make-up wearer anyway. I'm at work and I'll have it on but then [at home] the make-up will come off and the Egyptian Magic will go on. And if I do go on holiday, I don’t want to go with a bunch of products. I'll have my sunscreen, I want to have stuff that’s all going to work. A good coconut oil I can use for my hair, face and body, I wash my hair and have the coconut oil in it. I just rock the wet greasy look!

Egyptian Magic All-Purpose Skin Cream, £29, John Lewis

Nadine Coyle Beauty Bytes Egyptian Magic

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LA: What are your three most-used emojis?

NC: Llet me see, The heart, blowing a kiss and the party popper emoji.

LA: Do you have a favourite book?

NC: You know, to be honest, I haven’t read a book in so long. A cook book, actually, those are the books I read cover to cover, every word. Aldo Zili has a really good one out on seafood that he gave me years ago.

LA: What would your last meal be?

NC: Probably a Christmas dinner. Chicken, stuffing, cauliflower cheese, gravy, cranberry sauce.

LA: It's all about the sides, isn't it. What is your favourite TV show to binge-watch?

NC: At the moment it’s SAS: Who Dares Wins. So dramatic. And I don’t know why, but I always watch it at night and then I’m all hopped up on military energy.

LA: Favourite movie?

NC: I do love Catch Me If You Can with Leonardo DiCaprio. Anytime it's on I love it. But I also love Jurassic Park. What's it called, The Lost World, love that. I need to clear the house when that is on, like, 'nobody speak!'

LA: What are your favourite Instagram accounts to stalk?

NC: Do you know who I always end up looking for, Jesse J’s account. Very strange one, but I do that. And it’s been [her] for a while as well. I don’t know what it is, there's something I find quite addictive about her Instagram stories. I can't think of anybody else! I'm not a huge Instagrammer. I mean, I like it, but I'm not keeping tabs on peoples lives.

LA: What is the first thing you bought with your first big pay cheque?

NC: My first pay cheque was around Christmas time, and I'd very recently got a bank account and a cheque book. I bought a load of Christmas presents and I was just writing cheques to all my nearest and dearest.

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LA: What does the word 'wellness' mean to you?

NC: I think of juice and really good food, loads of hydration and good, clean fresh air. You know, clearing the mind and body of pollution.

LA: What do you do when you need a bit of down time?

NC: I need to figure out what I need to do when I need quiet time. I don’t get a lot of quiet time and don't really spend alone of time alone ever at any point. I have a child and I have a big family and a lot of work, you know, loads of friends. You know I don’t really do a lot of down time.

LA: Who were you the most starstuck meeting?

NC: It's been the same forever and it's Tom Jones.

LA: It's always the people you grew up watching on TV or who your parents listened to, isn't it?

NC: The two times I met him I just lost all cool. I didn’t think I had that in me, to be so weird. But it was that feeling when the breath just leaves you and you don’t know what to do with yourself. Then you’re trying to pull it back and rectify things!

Lucy Abbersteen
Beauty Contributor

Lucy is a freelance beauty editor and contributor at Marie Claire, and has written for titles including Glamour, Refinery29, Popsugar, woman&home and more. She was previously Marie Claire’s junior beauty editor. During her career, she’s covered everything from backstage beauty at fashion week to interviews with famous faces like Drag Race royalty and Little Mix. As for her beauty ethos, she’s a big advocate for not having to spend a fortune on beauty products to get good results, and when she’s not got beauty on the brain you’ll find her reading or hanging out with dogs.