Ekin-Su Culculoglu feels there are benefits to Love Island contestants having to disable their social media accounts before entering the villa as the focus should be on “finding love”.
Before the recent winter series aired, for the first time ITV asked islanders to make their accounts “dormant” while they were on the dating show so nothing could be published on their behalf.
But despite seeing the positives, Turkish actress Culculoglu, 28, who won the show with Italian business owner Davide Sanclimenti last summer, said the policy could also affect contestants’ careers after their time in the villa.
“Why I think it’s good is because it’s purely based on finding love.
“People use Love Island as a platform… the concept is of finding a partner… Instagram, all that stuff is a bonus.”
Contestants often garner huge amounts of followers and sign lucrative brand deals after featuring on the reality series.
After her win, Culculoglu became an ambassador for a fashion boutique and makeup brand.
The actress is now looking towards pursuing other career ambitions and plans to search for an acting agent this month as she seeks to “distance” herself from Love Island and “be her own person”.
Reflecting on what parts she would like, she said: “Acting in films, playing roles and quirky characters, something that would make you think, ‘Oh, Ekin is not this’ but then I smash it.”
She said she is not concerned when people say she may be forgotten after new contestants come through.
“That doesn’t bother me because of who I am. I know what I’m going to do in life and I know my dream”, she said.
She said Sanclimenti has been greatly supportive, especially when her family in southern Turkey was affected by the recent earthquakes.
A magnitude 7.8 earthquake hit parts of Turkey and Syria on February 6, resulting in tens of thousands losing their lives and countless more becoming displaced, while there have been numerous aftershocks.
She said: “Davide has been great supporting me emotionally. I was with him when we heard and I just couldn’t comprehend the devastation.
“I’ve been keeping up with the news since it struck… I hope to visit the affected area with The Red Cross as soon as it’s safe.”
After the news broke, the TV star said in an Instagram post she had donated what she could and encouraged others to help those affected.
The full Culculoglu interview can be read in the April issue of Women’s Health UK, on sale now.