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Strictly Come Dancing star Neil Jones has revealed he’s been tattooing himself during lockdown…and he once spent £800 on a steak dinner.
The popular dancer is best-known for strutting his stuff on the hit BBC One show.
But away from the ballroom floor the 39-year-old TV star has been embracing his hidden talent as an ink man.
Neil has a string of tattoos on his body and, with time on his hands before the new Strictly series this summer, the ginger-haired dancer has enjoyed getting creative with his body art.
“I love to draw and I’ve always designed my own tattoos, and then during lockdown I started learning how to tattoo,” revealed Neil.
Strictly star Neil has been tattooing himself during lockdown
“I’ve been practising on my own skin as I got myself the machine as a birthday present.
“I started with a smiley face and then I started an A4-size piece on my left leg but I haven’t finished that yet.”
The respected dance choreographer added in an interview with OK!: “I’ve said to a few of my friends if they’re happy to get a small tattoo then I’ll give it a go on them, and even Gorka [Márquez] was joking that I could tattoo him!”
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Neil’s nicknames include Ginge or Ginger – and the dancer is more than happy to embrace his flaming hair colour.
So much so that his next dance tour is aptly called Gingerland and his podcast, which he co-hosts with Michael Danilczuk and Craig Shaw, is titled Tall, Blonde and Ginger.
But Neil admits that he found lockdown tough and even cried when the second wave of the pandemic finally started to ease.
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Asked when he last cried, the TV personality admitted: “During lockdown. The most recent one was the toughest. I think I cried with happiness when things started opening up again.”
He also revealed he once splashed out £800 on an extravagant steak dinner when he used to work in Hong Kong.
“I went to this incredible steakhouse there and the tomahawk steak was £800,” revealed Neil.
Neil was married to fellow Strictly dancer Katya Jones from 2013 to 2019
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“It was so good! I went back with some of my students years later and I bought them the steak as they had paid for me to teach them how to dance.”
Neil was married to fellow Strictly dancer Katya Jones, but the pair famously split after she was publicly shamed after a photo showed her kissing comedian contestant Seann Walsh.
And only yesterday it was revealed that Neil has moved on with Mexican model Kelly Lopez.
Neil's former girlfriend Luisa Eusse
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He is reported to have been getting close with the stunning star following his bitter split from ex-girlfriend Luisa Euisse after rumours swirled that she had been unfaithful.
A source told The Sun that the pair enjoyed an instant connection and swapped numbers in a bid to keep in contact after sparks flew.
“Neil and Kelly had instant chemistry and swapped numbers after shooting the video,” the insider said.
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“He took her on a dinner date and spent the whole day at a lagoon together.
“They met up a few more times towards the end of Neil's trip and have vowed to stay in touch.”