Shell Short has spent over £30k on beauty treatments and plastic surgery to look like her idol, former glamour model Katie Price
Just a few months ago, Shell Short was finally close to achieving her goal of transforming herself into her idol Jordan. People asked for her autograph, and lookalike agencies promised her lots of work.
But it hasn’t come cheap. Last year, Shell, 26, spent a staggering £32,250 on cosmetic surgery, beauty treatments and clothes to look like the star, and is now £30,000 in debt.
But Shell has realised that being Jordan is not only expensive, it’s hard work too, and she’s struggling to maintain the star’s size 6 figure after piling on weight over Christmas.
'I thought I was ugly and that having big boobs and a tiny waist would make me happy'
“I’m really angry at myself for putting on weight,” says Shell, who lives in London.
“In December, everyone was telling me how much I looked like Jordan, but that’s not happening now. But I’m on a strict diet, I’m getting veneers, and my lips injected again. Then I’ll be as successful as Jordan.”
Shell claims her obsession with celebrities when she was a size 12 teenager made her want to change the way she looked.
“I wanted to look like Jessica Simpson,” she says. “I thought I was ugly and that having big boobs and a tiny waist would make me happy.”
So when she turned 20, Shell set out to become a glamour model. She spent £3,500 boosting her chest from a 32B to a 32D, £4,500 on laser skin treatment, £400 on hair extensions and £1,500 on professional photographs – all paid for with credit cards.
She says: “I wanted to become a glamour model because it seemed an easy route to fame and fortune. I wasn’t worried about getting into debt because I knew I’d be able to pay the money back once I started modelling.
“And not long after, I got work posing in lingerie for Playboy and other men’s magazines. But I only earned £600 a month, so I had to work as an admin assistant and a dance teacher as well.
“My mates said I was gorgeous, but I hated my fat face and chunky thighs. At times I became so depressed I wouldn’t go out.”
Shell was never short of male attention, but admits that some men have told her she needs therapy.
“A few exes said I was obsessed with myself because I spent so much money on my appearance, but I was just unhappy,” she says.
Shell’s celebrity obsession continued into her 20s, and last year she turned her attention to Katie Price, spending hours studying the model’s image and clothes.
“I’m impressed by how much money she’s made and how her new brown hair, smaller boobs and bigger lips have made her even more popular. I thought if I could look like her, I could be just as successful,” she says.
Shell’s transformation began in April 2008, when she spent £500 having her blonde hair dyed brown and boosted with extensions.
“When Jordan went to the US for surgery, I kept a list of her ops and had them done in the UK over the summer,” says Shell, who earns £1,800 a month.
'I break down in tears worrying about my debts'
“My breasts were enlarged to a size 32DD, I had fillers in my cheekbones, my lips were injected with Restalyne and I had liposuction on my stomach, bottom and thighs. It cost £13,500, which I paid for with six credit cards and two loans.”
Shell’s boyfriend of eight months, builder Daniel Howard, 25, admits he’s concerned by Shell’s bizarre obsession. He says: “I tell her she’s attractive but she’s never satisfied.”
Incredibly, Shell’s mum, taxi driver Tracey Short, 47, supports her daughter’s lifestyle. “At least she’s not spending her money on fags and booze,” says Tracey, from Plymouth.
According to Shell, her efforts started to pay off towards the end of last year. “People used to ask for my autograph and I’d get strange looks at the shops, which made me feel like a celeb,” she says. “I’m determined to get back to that point again.”
And despite the fact she doesn’t know how she’ll pay off her debts, she is adamant she’ll have surgery again to keep up with her idol.
“I haven’t done any lookalike work yet, but I know I can earn £500 a day. I’ve been told I’ll get lots of bookings,” she insists.
“I break down in tears worrying about my debts, but when I look in the mirror and can almost see Jordan staring back, I know it’s worth it.”
By Alley Einstein