Steps' Claire Richards wows Saturday Night Takeaway fans with her 'amazing' figure after six stone weight loss

She has become almost as famous for her yo-yo dieting as her singing career in recent years.

But as Steps returned to the stage on Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway, the 39-year-old pop star wowed fans with her “amazing” figure.

Performing on the show alongside her four other bandmates, the blonde beauty wowed viewers at home, who couldn’t help but comment on her new envy-inducing look.

Fans were blown away by Claire Richards’ “amazing” figure on Saturday night
(Photo: ITV)
Performing alongside her bandmates, her envy-inducing figure sent Twitter wild
(Photo: ITV)

Having battled with her figure since after Steps split in 2011, Claire’s battle with her figure has made almost as many headlines as her pop career.

But on Saturday night she was centre of attention as the pop group performed on Ant and Dec’s prime-time juggernaught.

Taking to Twitter, viewers couldn’t help buyt express their shock and admiration at the blonde beauty’s honed and toned figure.

“Holy cow – Claire from Steps looks amazing!!” Wrote @Kellyann19, while another fan, admiringly wrote: “To be fair- you have to take your hat off to Claire from steps who is looking awesome!”

And one amazed viewer, @LucyWhite_XX, tweeted: “How skinny is Claire from Steps now!!”

Claire’s social media-smashing appearance comes after she revealed a brand-new look last year, following a whopping six stone weight loss and adopting a healthier lifestyle.

The Steps singer showed off her dramatic new look in a picture on Instagram, where she also debuted a fresh new bob hair cut.

Fans think she looks fab, with one writing underneath: “Gorgeous. I thought cutting your hair would be a ‘tragedy’ but those worries are ‘better best forgotten’.”

But just how did Claire lose all that weight?

Claire shows off slim new look and hairdo on Lorraine

Claire Richards in Instagram
Claire Richards is looking great
(Photo: princessclarabella/Instagram)
Claire Richards in Celebrity Big Brother in 2013
Claire Richards in Celebrity Big Brother in 2013
(Photo: FameFlynet)

Claire has become almost as well known for her yo-yo dieting as her days as one-fifth of bubblegum pop group Steps.

The blonde has lost and gained between four and six stone, an amazing six times.

Claire shows off her figure in a black sequined dress

She is now in her healthiest shape for a long time, after losing six stone in two years.

The diet began in 2013, when Claire and husband Reece Hill decided to try for a third child.

Steps Pop Group
Claire with Lee Latchford-Evans, Lisa Scott-Lee, Ian ‘H’ Watkins and Faye Tozer in Steps

With the baby plan getting nowhere, Claire’s doctor suggested the 5ft 6in star’s size might be the problem – she was creeping towards 16st.

By spring that same year, Claire had dropped to a size 10 and around nine-and-a-half stone. But with still no joy on the baby front, Claire went back to the doctor.

Read more: Claire Richards reveals ‘daily struggle’ to maintain her figure

He gave her the shattering news her constant yo-yo dieting may have damaged her hormone levels to such an extent she might never conceive again naturally.

Claire Richards in 2007
Claire pictured in 2007

“We are very lucky to have a family and all be together in a house we love,” she said last year. “I have to remind myself some people don’t have any of those things, so I never take it for granted and have stopped beating myself up over it.”

Claire’s obsession with food began during her time in Steps.

The group – Faye Tozer, Lisa Scott-Lee, Ian ‘H’ Watkins and Lee ­Latchford Evans – formed in 1997 and stormed the charts with four albums and three compilations.

Steps Music Group
Claire admitted she had an eating disorder during her days with the group

They scored two No1 singles, Tragedy and Stomp, and in 1999 supported Britney Spears on tour.

After splitting in 2001, they had a reunion in 2011 and remain friends.

But despite their success Claire, then a size eight, felt driven at the height of their fame to stay thin at all costs.

She previously said: “I definitely had an eating disorder back then. I wasn’t diagnosed, but for four years at least I exercised like crazy. I ate as little as I could possibly get away with.”

Claire Richards in 2013
Claire Richards arriving at the launch of Celebrity Big Brother 2013
(Photo: PA)

When the band split, Claire started to pile on the pounds. By 2007, when she had son Charlie, she was a size 20.

Claire went on a crash diet before her wedding the following year – when she also released her 5 Step Fat Attack workout DVD – and got down to a size 10 in around nine months by training five days a week and eating specially delivered diet meals.

But it was not a sustainable regime, and after the wedding the weight crept up again.

After the birth of her daughter Daisy, Claire was nearly a size 18. “Then I lost it again. Then I gained it again. God, it’s awful isn’t it?” she said.

Claire Richards in 2010
Super slimmer Claire in 2010

She now eats 1,000 calories a day, sticking to small portions of yoghurt and fruit, salad with tomato and mozzarella, and chicken and vegetables.

She allows herself a mini Magnum on her son’s school’s “ice cream Fridays” and a glass of wine at the end of a hectic day.

And Claire walks everywhere, saying: “I don’t want to struggle to run around after my kids. The reality of being big is you have a few more aches and pains.

“In the morning I was almost in agony walking down the stairs because my ankles would hurt.”

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