Irish contestants have caused a stir on the hugely popular reality TV show over the years.
And from the moment Love Island announced their contestants for this year’s winter series in sunny South Africa, tongues have been wagging as to what surprises series nine will bring.
TV and radio presenter Maya Jama (28) is hosting for the first time following Laura Whitmore’s decision to step down.
Irish Islanders have long been popular on the show as they aim to use their selection as a launchpad for a more prolific career — with varying results. Where are they now and what have they been up to since?
Maura Higgins: Series 5
Maura is probably the most successful Irish Love Island contest after her quick wit and mischievous turn of phrase had viewers in stitches. Maura reached
She has a massive social media following of over 3.6 million on Instagram and has maintained a successful career on the back of the show.
The Longford lass went on to appear in another reality show, Dancing on Ice, and branched into presenting work, including on This Morning and Glow Up. She has also partnered with several high-profile brands, securing lucrative deals with the likes of Boohoo and Ann Summers.
Greg O’Shea: Series 5
Affable Limerick man Greg joined the show later in the series and ended up being a runaway winner with his squeeze Amber Gill. Greg has been busy since, setting up his own fitness and wellness app and competing for Irish rugby sevens in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. But after the event, Greg revealed in a moving interview on last week’s Late Late Show that he struggled with his mental health.
He has since told how many others responded to his emotional interview. “You wouldn’t believe the amount of men of all ages that have since come up to me and reached out online to tell me how my story resonated with them,” he said.
“They shared their own personal stories and even though they are upsetting to hear it’s also uplifting at the same time because we are starting to talk a bit.”
Rob Lipsett: Series 3
Rob didn’t make a successful romantic connection during his time in Casa Amor, but he has since used the increased public profile to build himself a media career.
Though he was only on the show a few days, he now runs a successful business specialising in fitness advice and goals, mostly through social media.
He also produces the protein pancake brand, Fuel Cakes.
Shannen Reilly McGrath: Series 3
Shannen joined Casa Amor but left the island just days later. She has since said she experienced a huge amount of online trolling and “wouldn’t recommend” going on the show.
“At the time I thought it was the best thing ever, coming off something and having fame out of nowhere.
Now that I’m a little bit older, less naive and used to the industry, I wouldn’t recommend going on it.” She has since forged a successful modelling and influencer career through her large social media following.
Yewande Biala: Series 5
Yewande entered the villa in 2019, but the Dublin scientist’s time on the island did not always run smoothly.
She has since taken on TV work and last summer launched her book Reclaiming, in which she spoke candidly about her mental health struggles.
Jack Keating: Series 8
Jack — the son of Ronan Keating and Yvonne Connolly— went looking for love on the island but though his appearance was brief, it helped him build his public profile.
He has since taken on other TV work and moved to London to build on his career plans.
He didn’t make a connection but has since said it was a great experience.
“You go in there as part of six lads moving towards six girls who are already coupled up, so it was tough and it definitely put me out of my comfort zone, but I loved it.”
Dami Hope: Series 8
Wexford man Dami caused a stir on the show but has since forged a high-profile career along with girlfriend Indiyah. The couple have moved in together and spent their first Christmas together. Dami is also running a successful podcast sharing his Love Island experiences and gossip.
Adam Maxted: Series 2
Adam became the first Irish Love Islander when he rocked on to the series in its second week and ultimately finished in fourth place with Katie Salmon. The Belfast man has since set up a career as a professional wrestler and also works as a personal trainer.
Matthew MacNabb: Series 7
The GAA player from Downpatrick joined the show at the later stages and spent three weeks in the villa.
His dry sense of humour drew him a fanbase, while his two-word ending of romance with Kaz — ‘we’re done’ became one of the show’s most memorable moments.
He went on to have a successful run on Dancing With the Stars where he met his dancer girlfriend, Laura Nolan. He now works in fitness and travel.