British TV presenter Caroline Flack turned to alcohol after her axing from The X Factor.
The 36-year-old star and Olly Murs, 32, became co-hosts of the British TV talent contest in 2015 after presenting its sister show The Xtra Factor together from 2011 to 2012.
However after several on air blunders and a mauling from viewers and critics, in February (16) it was announced that she and Olly would not be returning to host this year’s (16) competition.
And the star admits she turned to alcohol to deal with the stress of being criticised and the disappointment of not being asked back to present the ITV1 show.
“I wasn’t feeling 100 per cent healthy or 100 per cent happy,” Caroline tells Britain’s The Sun newspaper. “I couldn’t turn to someone and say ‘fix me’ – I had to do that myself.
“I used to turn to wine if I had a stressful day. And I acted like it was a treat. But it’s not a treat. You’re just covering up your stress rather than dealing with it. I wasn’t looking after myself.”
Caroline and Olly were drafted in by X Factor boss Simon Cowell after he was impressed by their friendly on-air relationship.
After hiring the pair to present last year’s (15) show he told The Sun, “Olly and Caroline have great chemistry. I think he fancies her, or maybe the other way round actually.”
However their presenting stint was hit by gaffes, with the worst coming when Olly, who finished as a runner-up on the show’s 2009 edition, miscounted the judges’ votes and mistakenly told contestant Monica Michael she was being sent home.
Caroline then had to rectify the situation by informing him that Monica and rival Anton Stephans had each been sent home by two judges, resulting in the decision being put to a public vote, with Monica departing anyway after receiving fewer votes than Anton.
The star will return to television as the host of ITV’s romantic reality series Love Island on Monday (30May16), and explains that she will no longer be listening to her critics, adding, “Not everyone is going to like you so you have to filter it.”
As for The X Factor, it will return to TV screens later this summer (16), with Dermot O’Leary, who hosted the show from 2007 to 2014, taking over presenting duties from Caroline and Olly.
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