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'Queer Eye's Fab Five reveal exclusively just how the hit Netflix show has changed them

The boys talk self-esteem and sexuality in our new July issue.

2018-06-21

In less than five months, the Netflix revival of Queer Eye has become a bona fide TV phenomenon, propelling the new Fab Five to global superstardom almost overnight.

The hit make-over show's forthright discussion of issues relating to faith, sexuality, race and self-worth has helped it win over legions of fans and critics alike, and its central message about love's victory over difference has provided more than a handful of tear-jerking moments over the course of its two short seasons.

But while stars Jonathan van Ness, Karamo Brown, Antoni Porowski, Tan France and Bobby Berk have helped lead dozens of people along the road to self-acceptance with seeming ease, the gang readily admit that the show has proved transformative for them, too.

Karamo Brown, shot exclusively by Leigh Keily for Attitude's July issue

Opening up in our new July issue - available to download and in shops now - the boys reveal how the last six months have helped them feel more comfortable in their own skins, too.

"Being in a comfort bubble with the [Queer Eye] guys, getting praised for being ourselves, has changed me," explains the group's resident food expert Antoni.

"As a result of the show, I feel I’m openly gay and I wasn’t before. I’ve had the safety to start wearing brighter things. I wore a twin pyjama set last night, I paint my toenails now.

Antoni Porowski, shot exclusively by Leigh Keily for Attitude's July issue

"I’ve always had a feminine side but it’s been on the inside.

"To be able to express it on the outside without any shame is really nice."

British-born style adviser Tan France agrees that he's often dished out advice to the show's participants that he struggles to follow himself.

"I told AJ [a contestant, known as 'Heroes' in the show] to quash this idea about masculinity and embrace his feminine side, but sometimes I still find myself uncrossing my legs just in case somebody sees it and thinks 'He’s a bit too effeminate', he admits.

Tan France, shot exclusively by Leigh Keily for Attitude's July issue

"I have to remind myself that it’s OK to be feminine." 

While viewers of Queer Eye have fallen in love with every member of the Fab Five, the irrepressible spirit of grooming guru Jonathan van Ness has arguably provided the show with its beating heart of positivity - but the Illinois-born hairdresser revealed that a darker side of his personality can often creep in if left unchecked.

"I'm good at following my own grooming advice. Probably the advice I could follow more is the self-love sort of advice," he tells us.

Jonathan van Ness, shot exclusively by Leigh Keily for Attitude's July issue

"I think four out of every five days I'm good at that but certain situations can trigger self-doubt or cloudiness around how I feel about myself.

"I think how much I'd tell my best friend: 'Queen, leave him, he's no good', and think maybe I need to tell myself that more."

Elsewhere in Attitude's July issue, Bette Midler reveals why ageist and sexist Hollywood won’t bring back the cast of Hocus Pocus for a sequel and Whitney Houston’s sister-in-law Patricia opens up about the late diva’s secret childhood trauma.

Bobby Berk, shot exclusively by Leigh Keily for Attitude's July issue

Meanwhile, Shangela spills the T on RuPaul’s Drag Race All Stars and working with Lady Gaga in A Star Is Born, and Boy Erased author Garrard Conley recounts the real life horror of religious gay conversion therapy as his moving story heads to the big screen.

Read the full interview with Queer Eye's Fab Five in the July issue of Attitude. Buy now and take advantage of our best-ever subscription offers: 3 issues for £3 in print, 13 issues for £19.99 to download to any device.