Mario Falcone

Mario Falcone

Mario Falcone claims bullies forced him to get a nose job.

The 28-year-old reality star was driven to go under the knife last month after years of negative comments from his 'The Only Way is Essex' co-stars James Argent and James Bennewith.

Speaking to The Sun newspaper, the star said: "I broke my nose playing football when I was 11. It didn't bother me until five years ago when Arg [James Argent] and Diags [James Bennewith] picked on me about how big it was live on 'TOWIE'. I'm proud of my Italian heritage - our nose is supposed to be a striking feature, like David Gandy."

And things went from bad to worse for the hunk, who revealed he has been "bullied on social media for years" because of the size of his nose, and became depressed after people compared him to cartoon characters.

He said: "But everyone jumped on the bandwagon and I was bullied on social media for years, with people setting up Twitter accounts dedicated to slagging off my nose. I got compared to Gonzo off 'The Muppets' and Squidward off 'SpongeBob SquarePants'. I became so insecure about it I turned down modelling shoots, and would even pose for my own clothing range. I was unhappy and depressed."

Mario spent £5,000 going under the knife for his rhinoplasty procedure, and whilst his girlfriend Becky Miesner loves the results, the recovery process has taken a toll on their love life.

He said: "My girlfriend said my nose was fine before, but said I've gone from a 9.5 to a 10. I'm so paranoid about breaking it again though - my girlfriend elbowed me in bed one night and I went mental. Now I put a pillow barrier up between us in bed. We have a five minute-cuddle, then it's lights off, pillow up."