Charlotte Dawson: ‘I’m embracing my tiger stripes and jelly belly’

Reality TV star Charlotte Dawson is proud of her post-birth body as she shares her journey as a first-time mum

charlotte dawson

by Lauren Hill Roger |
Updated on

She’s famed for her body-positive Instagram posts, often poking fun at her “jelly belly” and “double chin” – and new mum Charlotte Dawson is applying the same mantra with her post-partum figure.

In fact, the reality TV star – who gave birth to son Noah in early February – says she is happiest showing off “big Bridget knickers and maternity pads”.

And ahead of new MTV show Famous And Pregnant, she tells Closer she hopes it “makes other mums feel better” about their post-pregnancy bodies.

Charlotte, 28, says, “I want to show real life and make other mums feel better about it and be relatable. You’ve just got to embrace the tiger stripes – we’ve earned them, darlings.

“I want to show people that I’m not just going straight on a diet. I’m not trying to sugarcoat the after-birth. The jelly belly is real – it’s still a very jelly belly!

“I had the most perfect bump and then – boom – I got all of these stretch marks in the last couple of months. Obviously I have down days where I think, ‘God, look at my belly, I’m ruined’. But you’ve just got to embrace it.”

Charlotte – who’s the youngest daughter of late comedian Les Dawson – found fame on Ex On The Beach in 2016, and admits that in the past she spent hours in the gym and dieting to look “perfect”.

But since meeting and falling in love with her fiancé, rugby player Matt Sarsfield,  29, she has ditched her strict regime and is happier with cosy nights in with her favourite “chippy” dinners.

In her last shoot with Closer early last year, Charlotte said Matt adores her size 12 curves, adding, “I’m just not a gym bird – I love food and Prosecco!”

Check out: Celebs Go Dating's most OUTRAGEOUS moments


Closer celebs go dating most outrageous moments

CGD outrageous moments1 of 39

Mark-Ryan bails on Callum for a 'spa day'

Viewers were rightly outraged when one time apprentice reject Mark-dash-Ryan Parsons walked out on his second date with Barbadian Callum (who was, let's face it, waaaaay out of his league) claiming he'd had a spa day booked that he'd forgotten about. The real cincher was the wax sealed, handwritten note he'd left on his departure explaining he didn't want to see him again. Too-posh-to-function Mark Ryan caused dating coaches Anna and Paul a shed load of jip with his penchant for talking down to and insulting his dates.

CGD outrageous moments2 of 39

Marty McKenna's agency debut

It's 2022, so you'd think that media-trained telly types would know not to go onto national TV and refer to half the population as "birds" and "pigs". Not so for forgettable Geordie Shore star Marty, who within seconds of sitting down in the agency's newly revamped offices had branded women both and made the delusional claim that he'd "never had any complaints".

The fall of Stephen Bear3 of 39

The fall of Stephen Bear

After a few episodes of Stephen Bear acting as Stephen Bear-ish as it's possible to act, Nadia and Eden decided they'd had enough and chucked him out the agency. Good riddance.

Stephen Bear4 of 39

Stephen Bear asks for threesome

Speaking of Stephen Bear, remember when he asked those twins for a threesome? Good lord.

Now we think about it, everything Stephen Bear did was outrageous5 of 39

Stephen Bear

Now we think about it, everything Stephen Bear did was outrageous. Poor blue lips...

Joey Essex's burp date6 of 39

Joey Essex's burpy date

Some poor old girl who managed to score a date with Joey Essex ended up burping on his face throughout the entire thing. What a nightmare.

Jonathan Cheban dates a Kim Kardashian lookalike7 of 39

Jonathan Cheban dates Kimmy K lookalike

This just couldn't have been more classic, could it? Things (obviously) didn't work out, and Kim Kardashian lookalike Chanelle Sadie Paul ended up having an alleged sordid affair with dating agent Eden Blackman. But that's a whole other story...

Gemma Collins stands up poor old Laurence :(8 of 39

Gemma Collins stands up poor old Laurence :(

Gemma Collins successfully managed to anger the entire nation after failing to turn up to the Eurostar for her Parisian date with Laurence.

Joey Essex dates a cougar...9 of 39

Joey Essex dates a cougar...

She wanted to dress him as a pony, for some reason.

... and Calum Best dates a cougar10 of 39

... and Calum Best dates a cougar

He looks like he had a wonderful time.

Frankie Cocozza and Charlotte Dawson break the rules and date each other11 of 39

Frankie Cocozza and Charlotte Dawson break the rules and date each other

They were the first celebrity couple to hook up with each other on the show. Sadly, it wasn't meant to be. And Frankie is now happily married to someone else.

CGD outrageous moments12 of 39

Their double date ends in awks

Both Frankie and Charlotte's dates ended up walking out of the double date set up by the agents after they couldn't stop gushing about the other.

CGD outrageous moments13 of 39


Yes, this is a real thing that actually happened and the snubbed dates, Kieran Patel and Katie Champ are still together.

Charlotte Dawson bum massage14 of 39

Charlotte Dawson bum massage

Charlotte Dawson made an impression (of sorts) on one oh her first dates by giving a bum massage in a busy pub. Not sure where that lotion came from.

Calum Best stands his date up15 of 39

Calum Best stands his date up

Calum got in hot water with the dating agents after failing to show up to one of his dates.

Gemma Collins storms out of date after he called her 'a diva'16 of 39

Gemma Collins storms out of date after he called her 'a diva'

She got up an left like a diva after he called her, er, 'a diva'. Well, she did show up about an hour late...

Charlotte Crosby spits milk during her date17 of 39

Charlotte Crosby spits milk during her date

Playing hot sauce roulette on a first date was never going to end well...

Jorgie Porter's date wants to see her on the loo18 of 39

Jorgie Porter's date wants to see her on the loo

After telling her that he'd Googled her before the date, Jorgie's date casually mentioned he'd like to watch her on the toilet. Wow.

Courtney Stodden's date gets x-rated19 of 39

Courtney Stodden's date gets x-rated

Courtney Stodden shocked viewers after getting her date to rub sun cream on her chest.

Charlotte Crosby dates a massive sexist20 of 39

Charlotte Crosby dates a massive sexist

When Charlotte told Jeavon (who also dated Love Island's Malin Andersson) that she'd slept with 20 men, he said: "that is bad, for a lad it's not that bad." Despite the fact he claimed to have slept with 50.

Joey Essex and Stephanie Pratt find love with each other21 of 39

Joey Essex and Stephanie Pratt find love with each other

They broke the rules, but was it worth it? Erm. Probably not, no. Because it lasted about two minutes.

Ferne McCann refuses to split the bill22 of 39

Ferne McCann refuses to split the bill

After ordering a frankly humungous amount of food, Ferne didn't offer to help pay the bill at the end of the date. She later burst into tears in the dating agency after the guy gave her a bad review for not doing so.

Tom Read WIlson admits he doesn't know who Kim Kardashian is23 of 39

Tom Read WIlson admits he doesn't know who Kim Kardashian is

But... how?

CGD outrageous moments24 of 39

Megan McKenna and Pete Wicks reunion

Megan and Pete had a notoriously rocky relationship on TOWIE, so putting them on the same series was a stroke of TV GENIUS.

CGD outrageous moments25 of 39

Kerry Katona's rude date

When Kerry Katona's date implied her children had been a "mistake", she handled it like a pro – but the nation watched from between their fingers.

CGD outrageous moments26 of 39

Jack Fincham and the Waitress

Jack Fincham was set up with a lovely girl called Carol by the agents, but admitted by the end he wasn't feeling it. Instead he got the barmaid's number, and ended up taking her to the final in Tenerife.

CGD outrageous moments27 of 39

Jack Fincham's second date

Jack Fincham abruptly ended the date he wasn't feeling by telling his date he was "tired" and had "had enough", before demanding she finish her glass of wine en route to the door.

CGD outrageous moments28 of 39

Jack Fincham's second date

He then got set up with an Italian called Chiara, but quickly took offense when she made a joke about one of the bartenders, calling them over and insisting she'd rather be on a date with them, instead.

CGD outrageous moments29 of 39

Lee Ryan gets pied

Ha! Ha, ha ha.

CGD outrageous moments30 of 39

Lady C's sexual innuendos

Just like narrator Rob Beckett said, the woman is an absolute SAUCE POT - just check out her traffic light analogy. Blimey.

CGD outrageous moments31 of 39

Malique Thompson-Dwyer's 'predatory' flirting

After getting slammed by viewers for his 'predatory' flirting at the first mixer, Malique offended one of his dates when he was forced to date two women at the same time, and made his preference for Jakeeme clear - with Danica storming off as a result. awks.

CGD outrageous moments32 of 39

Tom's birth affirmations

Anna Williamson is heavily pregnant in series eight and so lovable receptionist Tom devises some birth affirmations in case her waters break at work - "which could happen", points out Anna. Nuggets from Tom include "I am lactating generously" and "my vagina has retained its' elasticity".

CGD outrageous moments33 of 39

Amy Childs showed her deep and intellectual side...

When she asked her date, "If you were a sandwich, what would you be?"

CGD outrageous moments34 of 39

Malique ACTUALLY fell in love!

And then immediately fell out of it the following morning, after he "had sex all night" with his date, Jakeeme. He was - quite rightfully - told off by Anna and Paul.

CGD outrageous moments35 of 39

Liv Bentley walked out on her date

He was "late, stand-offish and entirely humourless" (fair), but his incessant talk of "pumping" was the final straw for Liv, who left halfway through (also fair).

CGD outrageous moments36 of 39

But he was totally convinced she was into him

Despite Liv doing a runner in the middle of their drinks, self-confident Otto was still convinced Liv fancied him and accused her of making "f-ck me eyes" across the table. CRINGE.

Amy Childs' toilet 'romp' with Jamie37 of 39

Amy Childs' toilet 'romp' with Jamie

Does this take the biscuit for CGD's most outrageous moment? During a double date with Olivia Bentley, Amy STRADDLED her date in the restaurant before scuttling off to the toilets, returning later looking dishevelled. They claimed to have only kissed... but we weren't born yesterday, hun.

CGD outrageous moments38 of 39
CREDIT: Instagram

Wayne Lineker and Chloe Ferry get engaged

Every series there's a 'forbidden romance' between the slebs but none was more outrageous than the betrothal of Geordie Shore star Chloe Ferry and old-enough-to-be-her-granddad (and brother of national treasure Gary) Wayne Lineker. The internet was agog when they announced their engagement, but it turned out to all be a subtle nod to sophisticated humour with Wayne admitting they "just wanted to see what people would say". Oh, you guys.

CGD outrageous moments39 of 39

Chloe Brockett's secret row with Marty McKenna

Although this moment never made it to our screens, Chloe Brockett recently revealed she'd secretly fallen out with co-star Marty McKenna and stormed off set following a row. She explained, "Soooo... something that no one knows about us is on the last day of filming me and @Marty_GShore had an argument. He kept winding me up all day... kept talking over me and I just lost my sh-t. I stormed off and called him a c--t."The pair soon made up though as Chloe continued, "We was friends five minutes later, but yeah, that would have been funny to watch. He annoys me like a brother lol."

charlotte dawson closer magazine
charlotte has opened up about motherhood ©James Rudland

Charlotte has also won fans for being honest and open about suffering from “baby blues”. In between cute snaps of her cuddling and feeding Noah, she admits becoming a mum has been an “emotional whirlwind”, while she had also been in physical pain over her “bleeding and cut nipples” thanks to breastfeeding.

“It’s not all happy smiles as I show on my pics here,” she wrote on Instagram. “I wanted to give up so much… The sleepless nights, the cluster feeding and how painful it was on my t*ts. But I carried on and stayed strong. I’m not going to sugarcoat it, it’s hard.”

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Charlotte previously revealed how she was “terrified, emotional and stressed” over going into the final stages of pregnancy during the third lockdown, as she feared hospital regulations could change and leave her going through childbirth alone.

She told her Instagram followers, “I’m scared they won’t allow the one person in the labour room any more... but if it’s worst than the first lockdown, then they might change it? So lucky to have the fabulous NHS and midwives, but can’t help but feel anxious.”

But after six hours in labour, Charlotte gave birth with Matt by her side, and the pair have been allowed to “bubble” with Matt’s sister and Charlotte’s mum for support with Noah. Charlotte says, “My mum and Matthew’s sister [are] in my bubble. I’ve got some amazing support. And being a mum is just the best feeling in the world.”

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