Gok Wan's Biography

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Gok Wan was born in Leicester in 1974, the son of a Chinese father and a British mother.

His father came to England from Hong Kong when he was a teenager.

Gok Wan and his parents, who met whilst working in a takeaway, lived on a council estate and he grew up on Fosse Road North in Leicester's West End.

Gok Wan's parents have a fish-and-chip shop.

He is most famous for being the presenter of How To Look Good Naked on Channel Four.

At one point, Gok Wan weighed 21 stone.

In an interview with Gok Wan in The Observer, he said that he studied at the Central School of Speech and Drama, but it was a disaster:

"Ticking boxes for public funding is what I call it. Chinese, fat, gay: I'd got in for the wrong reasons. I was a regurgitated product of Thatcher. My parents were uneducated, I'd never written an essay in my life, but I was told: "Yes, you can do this" - and I couldn't! Ooh shit. You did me no good by telling me I could!' Was he very unhappy? 'It was awful. I missed my family and friends and I was landed in white middle-class hell. I was literally surrounded by double-barrelled names and Porsches."

After dropping out of drama school, Gok Wan had a break and then pursued his interest in clothes, working as a hair and make-up artist as well as a fashion stylist.

The first series of How To Look Good Naked was screened in 2006 and proved a huge hit for Channel Four and led to further series.

Gok Wan's wrote a book connected to his Channel Four series, also titled How to Look Good Naked.

In October 2008, Gok Wan started presenting a new Channel Four series called Miss Naked Beauty, in which he looks for a fake-free female beauty.

In January 2009, Channel 4 broadcast Gok Wan: Too Fat Too Young, in which he looked at teenage obesity and explored his own relationship with food.

In autumn 2009, Gok Wan published Work Your Wardrobe.

In 2012, he released a book to accompany his Channel 4 series 'Gok Cooks Chinese'.

In the New Year's Honours list announced at the end of 2019, Gok Wan was made an MBE.

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