Carol Vorderman was told to tone down her glamorous self for Countdown in 'rebel' days

Carol Vorderman, 62, explained the reason behind her style evolution from her more “scholar-like” outfits on Countdown to her glamorous dresses and fierce figure-hugging ensembles.

The presenter joined Jessie and Lennie Ware on their Table Manners podcast to candidly look back on her stellar career.

When told she was “much more scholar-like” in the way she dressed, Carol pointed out how the way women are portrayed on TV has changed since she first had her start in the 80s.

She explained: “Yes. Because that’s what people told you you had to be.”

She went on: “Because back in 1982, when I started, if you cast your mind back: there were three channels, there was no telly as we know it, there was no breakfast telly, there was no Sky.

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“Channel 4 by definition was the beginning because Countdown was the first show and I was the first woman to talk on Channel 4.

“And so you were either one of three or four male news readers – taking the acting side to one side – or you were a dolly bird.

“There was no one else as a woman that you were allowed to be. So, then this thing called Countdown started and I had a proper job at the time, because I’m an engineer, you see.”

Carol continued: “So back then, you had to be what they wanted you to be on the telly. And I wasn’t the dolly bird, because they were models and I wanted to be in the telly anyway.”

She added: “So you had to be, what they wanted you to be. So back in the early days of Countdown all I did was answer the numbers and they had a dolly bird – just like we called them – doling out the letters.”

Asked whether she got told what to wear, Carol admitted: “Yes. It was very tidy.”

Carol went on to explain how her style evolved over the years following her successful stint in Countdown that launched her to fame.

She said: “I was a rebel. I just don’t really care what people think.”