SHE must be one of the few women on daytime TV who refuses Botox – but Linda Robson says she has a good reason for shunning tweakments.
The Loose Women panellist and star of sitcom Birds Of A Feather has been tempted to get work done — but refuses as it would encourage her daughters to do the same.
Linda, mum to Lauren, 39, and Roberta, 26, says of the injections: “I’d never have them.
“The lady who does my eyelashes turned up with Botox at my house last week. She brought it in case I fancied some.
“However, my girls keep talking about wanting lip fillers, and I’ve warned them, ‘Don’t you dare have your lips done or I’ll never speak to you again’.
“I felt if I had Botox, then they’d think they could have lip fillers.”
Shows such as Love Island are believed to be behind the boost in popularity of lip fillers — with 59 per cent of young people now seeing the procedure as comparable to getting a haircut or manicure, according to a survey by the register of accredited practitioners SaveFace.
But despite shunning surgery, Linda — married for 32 years to Mark Dunford — does admit she is insecure about her neck.
Her late mum Rita, who passed away in 2012, would sometimes comment on it, which has stayed with Linda to this day.
She says: “My mum gave me a complex about my neck. She used to say, ‘Your face looks lovely, but your neck . . . ’. And I’d tell her, ‘Well it’s the only one I’ve got, Mum!’.
“So I wear a scarf sometimes.
“But I guess I’m not bad for 64, and my hair is exactly the same as it’s always been — I came out of the womb looking like this.”
Despite having worked in showbusiness since age ten, Linda, who is now a gran to Lila, eight, and Betsy, four, has no plans to slow down.
“I’ll never retire,” she vows. “I couldn’t think of anything worse than sitting at home all day.
“I’ve been in the business for 54 years and I’ve had a great life. I’m still working, I’ve been all over the world, and I’ve seen places that I’d never have seen if I wasn’t an actress.”
Fans of Birds Of A Feather — which ran from 1989 to 1998 on the BBC then 2014 to 2020 on ITV — were thrilled Linda and co-star Lesley Joseph reunited for a Christmas Special in 2020.
Notably absent from the line-up was Pauline Quirke — prompting rumour of a rift.
But Linda reveals that the three ladies, who have known each other for more than five decades, are still as tight as ever.
She says: “Pauline and I have just been for lunch last week, and the week before that the three of us went out.
“Between the three of us, we’re about 200 years old.
“Lesley is 76, I’m 64 and Pauline is 62, and none of us have had any work done, which is unusual in this day and age.”
But sadly, there are no plans for another Birds Of A Feather special in the pipeline.
Linda says: “The problem is, Pauline now doesn’t want to act any more. She wants to concentrate on her acting academy.
“Lesley and I did the Christmas special, and it worked really well, but Pauline has decided she’s happy with her plans and her acting academy, so it’s very unlikely it will happen again.”
But for Linda her own love of performing is as alive as ever, and she will continue to do it for as long as she can.
She says: “I don’t mind if it is film or TV, just so long as it’s acting.
“I’ve just done a little bit for Netflix on a series called Hapless. It’s a comedy series, and then I did a small part in Sumotherhood with Adam Deacon.
“First there was Kidulthood, Adulthood, Brotherhood — and now this.
“Since I’ve been doing Loose Women, you become more of a celebrity than an actress, and people forget that I was an actress all those years ago.
“So I’d like to do more acting, and I don’t even want to get paid for it — I just want to act.”
- Linda Robson presented an award at The Bank of London Rainbow Honours 2022, at 8 Northumberland Avenue in central London.
‘POLITICAL CORRECTNESS IS AFFECTING COMEDY’
LIKE many stars who found fame in the Eighties and Nineties, Linda, who played Tracey Stubbs on Birds Of A Feather, reckons television has undergone a huge change.
She says: “Political correctness is affecting comedy nowadays.
Actress Caroline Quentin, 61, recently suggested that her Nineties sitcom Men Behaving Badly “wouldn’t pass the woke test now”. Linda says of her role as a panellist on Loose Women adds: “I think people are frightened, and I’m sometimes scared to open my mouth, especially if we’ve got guests on air.
“I’m afraid that I’m going to say something wrong.
“I’m always in trouble at Loose Women.
“If we have a guest on the show, often the producers will have to warn me what is the politically correct way – because you can’t even use the term ‘blind’ any more, you have to say ‘partially sighted’.
“And you can’t say ‘deaf’. It’s ‘hard of hearing’. But sometimes, it’s what you’ve grown up with.
“When we had Caitlyn Jenner on the show, everyone kept saying ‘she’ but I was nervous I might call her ‘he’.
“I had to think about it, but I was fine in the end.”