Carol Wright has let OK! VIP readers into her amazing Essex home, as she opens up exclusively about how recent breast surgery has totally transformed her confidence.

In the honest chat and shoot, 61 year old Carol speaks about how she struggled with body confidence in the past, resulting in her feeling like the “unsexiest woman on the beach”, and why her 60th birthday marked a huge turning point for how she felt about herself.

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We’re used to seeing her light up our screens as the Wright clan’s glamorous matriarch. But Carol Wright admits that behind the scenes, her low body confidence had left her feeling like the “unsexiest woman on the beach”.

So the former TOWIE star had a breast uplift and reduction to help her get back to feeling like the old Carol – and she’s thrilled with the results.

“I got exactly what I wanted,” Carol tells new. “I feel so much more confident. I’m 61 and there’s nothing to be ashamed of. Why not make yourself feel better?”

As for what her husband of 38 years, Mark Snr, thinks of her new assets, Carol says, “He’s a bit squeamish and I’ve still got some scars. I keep showing him them and saying, ‘Don’t you think they look good?’ and he says ‘Yeah’, then turns his head. He’s a bit too scared to look at the moment!”

Carol adds that sons Mark, 34, and Josh, 32, “don’t get involved with things like that” but her girls Jess, 36, and Natalya, 21, “fully understood why I was doing it”.

Meanwhile, Jess and Josh recently made Carol’s year when they told her they were expecting their first children with their respective partners, something she is “over the moon” about.

So here, as Carol welcomes new into her gorgeous Essex home, she talks about entering 2022 with new confidence, preparing to be a gran of two and the truth behind those Wright family reality show rumours…

Hi, Carol! You look amazing. How are you feeling since your op?

I feel great. I feel so much more confident. I’m 61 and there’s nothing to be ashamed of. We’re not going to have the most amazing boobs by my age and if you want something done like that, then I think, “Why not?” Why not make yourself feel better?

Exactly! Why was now the right time for you to do this?

I always said for my 60th I was definitely going to get it done and I’d been thinking about it for the past five years. My boobs were too big for my frame. I’ve got quite small shoulders and my poor mum [Nanny Pat] had such a hunchback, and I thought, “If I keep carrying these boobs around I’m going to end up the same way as her.”

Not that she had big boobs but it was from her back and I thought I was going down that route if I didn’t sort them. I’m quite conceited and I do like to look good, but every time I bought a swimsuit or bikini I was having to get ones with big bras and bones in them, and I felt like the unsexiest woman on the beach.

Not that I should look sexy at 61 but you still want to feel that way as that’s the way you’ve felt your whole life. I turned 60 and I had it all booked, and then Covid hit and it kept getting cancelled.

When did you finally get it done?

Well, I really did my research on who to go with and about 12 weeks ago I went to The Hospital Group and they really were amazing. My surgeon, Mr Hazem Alfie, was fantastic and put me at ease discussing the breast uplift procedure. I was a bit anxious before but knew I was in the best hands.

I got exactly what I wanted and I’m so pleased with the results, and am so much happier and more confident now. The aftercare was also great. Before I left, I went with a driver and picked up 20 tubs of Cadbury Heroes for every one of the doctors and nurses, as they really were my heroes.

What size did you go from and to?

I don’t actually know. I’ve always wanted smaller boobs and I’d say they’re half the size they used to be. Before, I couldn’t walk around without a bra on because it didn’t look right. Even if I wore pyjamas I’d have to wear a bra because of the way they were hanging. I’ve had new implants to replace the ones I had put in 25 years ago.

What does your husband Mark think of your new assets?

He didn’t care if I had it done or not but he’s quite squeamish and I’ve still got some scars. He couldn’t even watch the babies be born properly, he had to run out of the room as soon as they were about to come out! I keep showing him them and saying, “Don’t you think they look good?” and he says “Yeah”, then turns his head.

He’s a bit too scared to look at the moment. He doesn’t really have anything to do with them and he’s not really talking to them at the moment [laughs]! Every day, the scars are getting better and I said to him, “You wait, this time in another three months you won’t even know I’ve had it done.” Apart from them being firmer and smaller!

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What did your kids think about you having the surgery?

They were fine. The boys were a bit… they don’t really get involved with things like that. But the girls were fine and fully understood why I was doing it. And now that I’ve had it done they think it’s wonderful. They said, “Why not?”

Aw! You went to Dubai recently. Did you feel more confident in your swimwear?

I felt much better and I had the confidence to just slip on a bandeau bikini top, whereas normally I couldn’t because my boobs would just be hanging out the side. It’s changed my self-esteem.

I was meant to have a big party for my 60th organised by the kids but it couldn’t happen because of lockdown, so I’m glad I was at least able to do this as it’s something I wanted for my 60th. Because we couldn’t do a party the kids got me 60 presents instead! I said, “Please don’t do this again as I don’t know what to do with all this extra stuff.” But it was very sweet.

That’s amazing! Your family went through a tough time with Covid at the end of 2020 and into 2021. Did going through that push you to have the surgery?

Yeah, I just thought life is so short so you should do what you want because you never know what’s around the corner. I just think you have to live life to the full and enjoy it. What happened with Covid and us losing my brother-in-law [Eddie] was the most horrendous time ever.

Christmas [2020] was horrible and I never want to remember that Christmas. We all had Covid and the husbands were in and out of hospital and it was so scary, and then my brother-in-law never came out of hospital. He died and it was just absolutely terrible.

We’re so sorry. Thankfully, you have lots to look forward to this year, including becoming a grandma twice…

It’s mad, isn’t it? Everyone told me once you get one grandchild they start coming like buses and I thought, “It’s so true!” It’s so exciting. I can’t wait.

You’ll be the most glamorous grandma around!

Aw, thank you! But I feel like I might not be if I have to look after them for too long and there’s lots of sleepless nights. But no, I’m really looking forward to it.

Have you told the kids what you’d like to be called?

I’ve thought about it and I hate the name Carol actually, so I don’t want to be Nanny Carol, like Nanny Pat. I said I don’t mind Grandma or Nana. I want Mark to be called Pops but he hates it! When we were in LA with little Mark when he was over there doing Extra TV everyone used to call my husband Pops and he hated it. I think it’s really sweet so we’re just going to have to teach the kids to call us Nana and Pops.

Jess has spoken about how much she wanted kids. How thrilled were you for her and her husband William?

I was just so over the moon for her. I burst into tears. She came round and told me and Natalya together and we were both gobsmacked. It’s just amazing. She’ll be an amazing mum.

What did you think about the backlash Josh and his wife Hollie got for announcing they were expecting days before Jess’ wedding?

Well, it was me who told them to do it then! They kept trying to get the boys and girls together for dinner to tell them before the holiday but everyone was busy. So when we got on the holiday for Jess’ wedding I said, “Please do it now,” and they said, “No, that’s not fair.” I said, “It will make Jessica’s day.”

They did it and they were over the moon for them. I remember Will saying, “That’s the best news we’ve had yet.” They’d had so much upset with the wedding being on and off, and Jess was always crying, so it was some lovely news for them. I don’t know how anyone can think of it in a negative way.

How did Josh and Hollie tell you they were expecting?

As they couldn’t get everyone together, they invited me and Mark to [Essex restaurant] Sheesh with Hollie’s mum and dad. The waiter came round with a plate with the baby scan on it. We were like, “What’s this?” It was so shocking as I just didn’t think Josh would be the first. It was just the most amazing news.

Do you think that Jess and Josh expecting babies has taken the pressure off Mark and his actress wife Michelle Keegan in that department?

Yeah, I hope so. When they’re ready, they’re ready. They’re very busy, so I’m sure when the time comes and they’re ready, it will happen. It will be like coach loads of grandchildren then instead of busloads!

Were you proud of Mark for opening up about having a tumour removed?

I was very proud. He was a bit hesitant about talking about it. He said to me, “Do you think I should put it up?” And I said, “Yes, for awareness for other people. It will help other people if they come across something like that.” It’s something that people would neglect and think is OK. He was told by a couple of doctors that it was fine and he could leave it, and it was only because another doctor saw it and said it needed to be removed that he got it done, which I was very grateful for. It was very big.

It must have been so worrying for you all…

It really was. Mark said, “If you’d said to me two years ago you’re going to go have a big tumour cut out from under your arm, we’d have been worried for the rest of our lives,” but because it all happened so fast he just had to accept it.

It was all dealt with so fast you almost didn’t have time to worry about it. He didn’t talk loads about it, he just went and got done and sorted it. It was such a relief for him to have it removed and it put our minds at ease.

The house Mark and Michelle are building looks amazing. Will they be able to move in this year?

It’s fabulous, it’s going to be absolutely incredible. They should be there in a couple of months, maybe even before that. But Mark is a bit of a perfectionist, so he wants it completely finished before they move in. They could move in now but he just wants it totally done.

Is it near you?

Yeah, they’re literally five minutes from me. We all live near each other, which is really nice. As long as he’s not expecting me to do the housework! I wouldn’t want to do the housework in that house. It’s too big!

And finally, it is true that there’ll be a Wright family reality show this year?

We’re hoping so – let’s see what happens. We’re in talks. It would follow the family and our routines. It should be really fun.

Would the whole family be in it?

We’ll have to see nearer the time. We’re not allowed to say too much, so for now let’s just say yes!

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