Rachel is the covergirl for ‘Hello Magazine’ where she discusses the upcoming ‘Good Times’ tour with her bandmates S Club.
Rachel is busier than ever, rehearsing for the S Club tour, which kicks off in autumn 2023.
“We have mixed emotions about our tour because of everything that happened with Paul,” Rachel says, referring to the tragic death of her bandmate Paul Cattermole. “One minute we’re really emotional and then we’re upbeat thinking of our memories, so it’s a mix.”
“It’s so great to be back dancing again, though, and my body just instantly responds so well,” Rachel shares, revealing that the band is working with a choreographer from L.A.
“It’s just so fun. It doesn’t feel like exercise and it’s so great to be back with everyone.”
Fans will be pleased to know the tour is set to be nostalgia-packed, with Rachel revealing that the band’s signature moves from back in the day will be included in the all-new routines.
“There has to be those signature moves because for us, this is all about nostalgia and we want to give little nods to the old days,” Rachel shared.
The tour isn’t the only thing keeping Rachel busy at the moment. She’s also recently joined Heart 00s as a guest presenter, taking to the airwaves for the first time as a host, which was a huge step out of her comfort zone.
“My first show on Heart was really out of my comfort zone but I absolutely love it,” Rachel told HELLO!, lighting up with happiness as she spoke about her challenge. “It’s such a great way of expressing yourself. Radio presenting is like you’re talking to a friend and it’s really lovely.
“It’s fun and I love music and I’m really starting to grow in confidence with it.”
Stepping out of her comfort zone is something that’s important to Rachel, who says that given the chance, she is prone to retreating into herself, but knows this isn’t good for her.
“I feel so lucky in my career to have the opportunity to always step out of my comfort zone. It does feel scary and it does feel uncomfortable, but I know I need to be out there doing stuff.”
On how she cheers herself up on low days, Rachel adds: “I’m getting much better at reaching out and sharing more. I tend to want to hide away, but I’ve realised that actually I do need to talk things out because I can get very in my head.
“Reaching out to someone I really trust and talking and expressing how I’m feeling has been so helpful for me.”
Speaking openly is something Rachel also encourages in her daughters, Amelie, 12, and Minnie, 9, who she shares with ex-husband Alex Bourne.
“Showing an interest in who they are and hearing them is how I encourage confidence in my daughters,” Rachel explained.
“Empathising with them and really listening to them is so important. Minnie came out of school upset recently, and naturally as a parent I wanted to protect her and tell her it was okay, but emphasising and telling her she was validated in her feelings diffused the whole situation and she felt totally calm.
“I think the more validated children feel, and the more heard they feel is key to confidence,” Rachel continued.
“I want to hear their opinions. I want to know what they love, what they don’t love, what they just make them feel heard.”
Her own confidence has been a work in progress, with Rachel sharing she’s had to fake it a lot throughout her career.
“Being famous so young really impacted my confidence,” she confided. “I joined the band when I was 19, and when you’re a teenager you’re trying to fit in, you’re trying to work everything out and I really didn’t know who I was at that point.
“A lot of the time I had to just switch on a smile. I actually got very good at putting on the show face and pushing down everything that was really going on. I think that’s what I really struggled with,” she said.
“I honestly think I’ve felt my most confidence in the last few years, from finding my voice and finding what I really need in my life and setting those boundaries.
“I’ve done so much growing in the last few years, more than any time in my life, but still, feeling confident is a work in progress. One day I feel confident and the next day I don’t, it’s so changeable all the time. I’m just constantly figuring it out.”
One thing Rachel has figured out is that when she’s feeling down, it’s time to step away from Instagram.
“We’re drawn to social media when we’re feeling low or down, and then you see everyone’s highlights, and I’ve realised I need to say to myself, ‘This isn’t making me feel good,’ and take a break.”
That said, Rachel has a devoted following on social media, who love her petite fashion recommendations and flawless, minimalist vibe. “Style is an expression and I’ve always loved that,” she said. “I love the way it can give you confidence.
“It’s like putting on your armour but it’s also fun. Fashion is creative, it’s an expression of who you are and I love to connect with my followers that way.”
With the tour months away, and exciting projects on the horizon, we can’t wait to see how Rachel will step out of her comfort zone next. With her eternally sunshine-y attitude, we’re certain she’ll be incredible at whatever she turns her hand to next.
Words by: Melanie Macleod
Photography By: Shane Taylor