From being crowned Miss Great Britain to posing topless on The Sun’s “Page 3,” Leilani Dowding is no stranger to the spotlight. These days she bares more than just her body on VH1’s reality series Tough Love, where she’s been working with a matchmaker to learn why she’s single. Looking at these photos, we haven’t got a clue!
Is Tough Love your first reality show?
I was on Celebrity Fear Factor UK, where I had to walk on the wings of a biplane and do some other stunts, but this is different. You’re in a house for 10 weeks with eight girls—there were plenty of tears. Talking about emotions can be harder than sticking your head into a bucket of maggots.
How did you go from pageant queen to topless Page 3 girl?
I planned on going back to school, but then I got the Page 3 offer. It caused a scandal but also raised my profile.
Considering you originally studied economics, how did your parents react?
They were upset that I didn’t tell them. One day I got a call from my dad saying, “Are you topless in the newspaper?” I said, “Yeah, Dad.” They got used to it, and in the end I even posed with my sister.
We’ll have to Google that. You’re also a successful designer. What body part do men find the sexiest?
I love showing off my back. A lot of my LeilUna dresses are backless, and I’ve had guys try to sneak their hands around the corners when they give me a hug. I’m like, “Hold on a minute—why is your hand on my stomach?”
Now that you live in the States, how do American guys compare to the men back home?
Well, guys in L.A. definitely have better teeth! But I haven’t gotten used to the whole dating thing. Over here it’s totally normal to see other people. I could take advantage of that and have five boyfriends, but I’m a one-man girl.
Hometown: Bournemouth, England
Birthday: January 30, 1980
Secret Talent: Poker. “I was in the World Series. I didn’t get anywhere, but I played!”
Pickup-Line advice: “Just ask for the time. If a girl is interested, you’ll get more than a three-word answer.”
Sports Crush: Mark Sanchez
Go-To Drink: Raspberry vodka and Sprite
Embarrassing iPod Song: “Justin Bieber’s ‘Never Say Never.’ It’s not the song that’s embarrassing, but the frequency with which I play it.”