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Katie Piper reveals people ‘shouted’ at her in the street and asked her to ‘leave shops’ after acid attack

Katie Piper has reflected on the acid attack that changed her life and how she found the ‘faith’ to come back stronger than ever, despite appalling behaviour from some members of the public.

In 2008, Katie was attacked by an ex-boyfriend and an accomplice who threw sulphuric acid in her face, leaving her with severe burns and blind in one eye.

The star, who almost lost her life and faced time in intensive care, underwent multiple surgeries for her facial disfigurement, some ongoing to this day.

Despite the horrific attack, Katie was determined to come back stronger, and later released a documentary, Katie Piper: My Beautiful Face, to raise awareness about facial disfigurements and tell her story.

She has since carved a major career in TV and launched the Katie Piper Foundation, which helps other burns victims.

On Tuesday, Katie was interviewed on Loose Women, on which she is a panellist, where she was asked to tell her story.

Katie spoke about her life in a wide-ranging interview on Loose Women (Picture: ITV/Shutterstock)

She began with her idyllic childhood, where she suffered no ‘real pain or trauma at all,’ and became an independent young woman living life in London.

Reflecting on the attack, she said it ‘feels like two different lives’ – the time before she was burned and the time after.

Living back at home with her parents at 24 while she recovered from the life-changing incident, Katie revealed the horrific harassment she faced from the public, just for the way she looked.

‘How people reacted was my motivation to do the documentary,’ she revealed.

‘Initially, I looked very different to how I sit here today, I wore a face mask for two years, I had a shaved head, a very purple/red appearance.

The star said she wanted to ‘explain’ to people why she looked how she did in order to raise awareness (Picture: ITV)
Katie moved back in with her parents after the attack, and faced horrified reactions from the public (Picture: ITV)

‘People reacted by asking me to leave shops, shouting at me in the street.

‘I wasn’t famous, I wasn’t known, people didn’t understand why I wore a mask.’

She explained that, rather than hiding herself away, she ‘wanted to explain to people why I looked this way, educate people, relieve myself of that isolation

‘I’m not contagious, I’ve not got something which means I need to be rejected from society.’

The ever-optimistic Katie said that trauma is a fact of life, but it needn’t be a life sentence.’

Katie has since been made an OBE for her contributions to charity (Picture: PA)

Reflecting on what gave her the strength to live her life to the fullest, she said: ‘I fought so hard to live in ICU, what was the point if I’m not gonna go out and grab it with both hands?’

‘I thought: “This is my life, who is anyone to take it away from me?”

‘I didn’t know the answers, I just had to make the best of this, whatever it is.’

Katie recently received an OBE for her services to charity, thanks to her Katie Piper Foundation.

Now aged 38, the mother-of-two described it as ‘a wonderful privilege’ to receive an OBE from Princess Anne at the Queen’s Berkshire residence.

She said: ‘We’ve all experienced the fragility of life.

‘That was why I wanted to set the charity up, because after a burn injury, we have our lives saved by the amazing NHS, but it’s the quality of life afterwards and going back into society with a visible difference that’s really difficult, and it’s not something that we can do alone.’

Loose Women airs weekdays at 12.30pm on ITV.

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