Louise Redknapp has claimed that she rethought her life, including her marriage to football player Jamie, after Strictly pal Daisy Lowe told her she was still sexy.

The former Eternal singer grew close to 28-year-old model Lowe when they starred on the BBC1 ballroom series together last year.

Redknapp admitted the show made her drastically rethink her life and forced her and her retired English footballer husband to live in separate homes, making for one of the most shocking break-ups in the Strictly curse's 13-year history.

The 42-year-old, who has two sons with her estranged husband, said that Lowe uplifted her confidence, once saying to her: "Oh, my God look at your gorgeous body. You have to wear a sexy dress."

The star admitted: "She kept on at me to wear something sexy and by week three, I was in a leotard and tights not feeling self-conscious at all.

"I could feel myself changing week by week. Sometimes I felt like crying because deep down inside me this voice was screaming 'This is what I have been missing!'"

Redknapp previously admitted that taking part in Strictly Come Dancing was "the first selfish thing I have done since my kids were born."

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The former singer gave up her career in showbusiness after become a mother to boys Charley, 13, and Beau Henry, 8, and previously spoke about being a Stepford Wife trapped in a Surrey mansion in attempt to be the perfect mother and wife.

She revealed that she almost didn't take the Strictly opportunity due to her home-commitments, saying: "I was about to turn them down again but a friend of mine persuaded me to do it. And in a really shallow way I thought it would help me lose a bit of weight. Jamie agreed it would be a nice thing for me to do."

Redknapp also praised Lowe in an interview with the Telegraph and said that the curvy model prides herself on body confidence. She said: "Daisy is a mate who is an incredible cheerleader at a time when I've needed a lot of support.

"Daisy loves other women and she's all about body confidence. She completely believes in following your passion and fulfilling yourself as a woman, which I find really inspiring.

"It has made me realise how controlled I've been about the way I thought about myself for so long. The thing was I was always overly cautious of being judged.

"I cared too much about what people thought of me. But it wasn't always like this. Something happened that made me stop being me."

She went on to explain her passion for performing and how important it is to her, continuing: "I wanted to sing, I wanted to perform. I wanted to go back on a stage in front of an audience.

"I actually felt physically sick at the idea that I'd never have that buzz again, that fulfilment I get from performing.

"And that is when the s**t hit the fan. No one could understand why it was so desperately important to me. I feel I'm coming back to who I really am," she added.

The breakdown of the couple's marriage was first reported in June, and despite Redknapp wearing his wedding ring since rumours emerged, he has been spotted with and without it in recent weeks.

It was previously claimed that Redknapp was desperate to save the marriage, but the singer was enjoying her new life after Strictly with new friends including Lowe.