Molly-Mae Hague said she once called a newspaper’s customer service desk to ask them to take down an article containing pictures of her in a bikini that she described as “horrendous.”
In the former “Love Island” contestant’s new book, “Becoming Molly-Mae: Finding Happiness in an Online/Offline World” which was released on June 9, the influencer said she was in Barbados in late 2019, on a photoshoot to promote her tanning products line, when she noticed a photographer taking pictures of her.
Hague said the pictures later appeared on the website for British national newspaper the Daily Mail, under the headline, “Molly-Mae Hague displays her curves in a TINY white bikini.” The article was published on November 20, 2019.
The influencer said she felt the pictures looked like she had lots of “belly fat,” and called the Daily Mail, crying and asking them to remove the images from their website.
“I just rang a customer service number at the Daily Mail and got through to a receptionist or someone like that. I was sobbing my eyes out, saying, ‘This is Molly-Mae Hague and I’m ringing to say you need to take those pictures down!'”
The pictures were not taken down, Hague said, writing in her book, “I can actually laugh about that dramatic phone call now, but I really was teary for days afterwards and just wanted to hide myself away.”
Hague said she had gained some weight since being a contestant on “Love Island” in the summer of 2019, which she believes was reflected in her appearance in the photos. “I think the petite size 6 Molly everyone saw on Love Island had morphed into more like a size 10 Molly-Mae,” she wrote.
Hague said she dealt with significant online trolling after the images went viral on social media, with people calling her “fat,” and “
,” as an insult.
“It’s so difficult to sit there and say to yourself, Just ignore it. Because when someone’s saying they don’t like the way you look, it’s so hard not to look in the mirror and think, Are they right? Am I ugly? Am I fat? Should I
?” she said.
Hague is not the only former “Love Island” contestant to speak out about online trolling. Several outlets have reported that some influencers who leave the TV show become subject to harassment, threats, and bullying on social media.
In an interview with her book’s publisher, Ebury Publishing, which was shared with Insider, Hague said she has struggled with comments about her body image in the past, but added, “I now feel the most comfortable I’ve ever felt in my body, and I’m putting that down to the fact I have stopped allowing people who don’t really matter to me have an impact on how I feel (well, most of the time anyway!)”
Hague rose to fame on social media after appearing on season five of “Love Island” a UK reality dating show. She now has 6.4 million Instagram followers and is the creative director of fast-fashion brand Pretty Little Thing.
She became the subject of controversy in January 2021 when a clip from her interview on the podcast, “The Diary Of A CEO with Steven Bartlett”, went viral. Hague, who said “everyone has the same 24 hours” in a day to work and become successful, was criticized by people who said her comments were insensitive to people with fewer opportunities, according to The Sun.
Dexerto reported that the influencer apologized for comments in an Instagram story that is no longer available to view, saying, “I would never intend to hurt or upset anyone by anything I say or do.”