How Emma and Matt Willis parent their kids from banning McDonald's to breaking stereotypes & encouraging self expression

FROM banning their kids from McDonalds to breaking gender stereotypes, one of the nation’s most star-studded couples Emma and Matt Willis are praised for their unique parenting style.  

The 45-year-old TV presenter and Busted singer, 38, are parents to Isabelle, 11, Ace, nine, and Trixie, five.

After tying the knot in 2008, the celebrity duo have decided to keep their private life behind closed doors and ensure their children are not in the spotlight. 

And while they occasionally share glimpses into their parenting online, Emma and Matt often keep their children's faces hidden from the camera.

Here we take a look inside the celebrity couples parenting…


Back in May this year, former boyband star Matt revealed he and his wife Emma banned their children from eating McDonalds.

And not only that – their three little ones have never even tried anything from the fast food chain before. 

But the Busted hitmaker made the admission on his podcast When No One's Watching – and said it’s for a good reason.

The Year 3000 singer admitted: “My kids have never had McDonald's. It is the one thing they’ve never had and they’ll never have it. 

“It is the one thing we have been like, 'Do you know what, I don’t want you thinking that is food. Plus you are going to get to an age where you eat it all the time. 

“'I know that at the moment when I can control what you eat I am not going to let you eat that stuff'.”

So the couple may be strict with their kids’ eating habits, but they have been applauded for their other parenting methods.


Emma was previously praised by fans for 'breaking gender stereotypes' with her kids.

The Voice UK host shared a post to mark Children's Mental Health Week which featured all three of her kids, with their faces hidden, each showing off their own style.

Emma wrote: “Expressing themselves for #childrensmentalhealthweek.

“Raised in exactly the same way, yet all completely unique. My teenager before her time, my boss lady baby and my rainbow boy.”

She also recently shared a picture of her son Ace in the kitchen wearing a pink T-shirt and showing his long, blonde hair.

Emma captioned the post: “My little style icon (Ace, not Matt).”

The famous mum-of-three was shocked by the reaction from fans, and revealed for her, it is ‘normality.’ 

She later told Good Morning Britain: “It's just my son in a pink top and for me that is normality.

“He loves colour, he's always had long hair.  He's a very free and open-minded boy who doesn't really, well, he's like, 'Why do I have to dress in green, blue or grey if I like pink, red, purple?'

“I've tried to raise him as a very open-minded young boy.”

Then in an interview with The Sun, Emma said she loves to let her children explore. 

She said: “I think it's a really individual, personal thing. You know, my son likes what he likes, and far be it for me to stop him expressing himself or experimenting however he likes with clothes.


“I see it as hair is hair, clothes are clothes and colour is colour. And, you know, if my son wants to wear a pink top, I'm certainly not going to stop him.

“Let kids explore. Kids love exploring. And they don't just have to explore in the dirt with worms and spiders, they can explore with colour and clothes and hair. I just let him be him.”

Emma and Matt have allowed their children to be who they want and wear what they want. 

Matt also added: “He’s very musical and creative, he loves to dance, he makes clothes, he’s into fashion and does all of these incredible drawings.

“I admire that so much, and the fact he’s so free to express himself is really beautiful. He is who he is and we love him.”


Emma previously spoke about her bond with her kids and admitted that her husband Matt is usually seen as the 'fun' parent.

Speaking about family life on Dave Berry’s Dadpod podcast, the presenter admitted she’s ‘boring’ in comparison to her spouse.

She said: “He's like the fourth child. And that for me, is perfect, because I think he has such a fantastic bond and relationship with them because he can get down to their level, do you know what I mean? And when they want fun they go to him.

“It makes me feel sensationally boring because I'm like, 'Oh I'm that one, that tells them off and makes sure the washing is done,' and I am the quintessential mum and I think security. 

“That's what I've always had from my dad and Matt is just always there and always fun and I'm quite jealous of that.” 


Celebrity parents Matt and Ellis Willis previously revealed they have an honest approach when speaking to their children.

Matt discussed his sobriety and admitted that he has never hidden the fact that he doesn't drink from his three children.

The singer decided to quit drinking a few months into his daughter Isabelle’s life. 

In an interview, he said: “I just really don't want to f**k them up.

“I remember looking at her and going, ‘'Oh no… I've been getting everything wrong.’  Suddenly everything became about this little thing who needed us so badly.”

Speaking to The Sun's Fabulous Magazine, the dad added that 'he's been very open about why he doesn't, and so it's 'not really a big deal to kids. 

He said: “They’ve never known me to drink, but they’ve noticed I don’t do it and I’ve been very open about why I don’t, so it’s not really a big deal to them.

“We’ve talked about it and they know what I’m about and why I don’t do these things.

“They understand the words, although I try not to use them because they’re quite scary – words like ‘alcoholic’ and ‘addict’. So I say, ‘It doesn’t work for me, I can’t do that’, and that’s enough.”


But what many people love about Matt and Emma Willis is that they’re just like the rest of us – and often have embarrassing moments or shocking parenting mishaps. 

The Busted singer previously opened up about his ‘most embarrassing parenting moment’ after doing the school run when speaking on podcast Ben Behaving Dadly.

Matt revealed he accidentally forgot his baby was sleeping in the back of his car when he chatted to friends after the school run. 

He said: “I can tell you the one moment that made me go 'oh s***.' So I couldn't find a place to park, school parking. So I parked the car. Got the kids out, had to drop them off. 

"Dropped the first one off, dropped the second one off. I'm dropping the second child off, I'm talking to another parent.

“Suddenly, I thought to myself… this is nice. I'm talking to this parent, and I had this overwhelming feeling. A different feeling I hadn't felt for a while, which felt stress free. 

“Realising, I had left Trixie in the car. The entire time. A five-week-old baby in the f***ing car seat on her own. I mean I legged it…

“But then I ran back, checked, she was still asleep and everything was fine.”

We’re glad to hear that the celebrity couple also make parenting errors like the rest of us! 


At Christmas time, mum Emma shared a sweet snap to Instagram which left her followers ‘awwing’ at the cuteness. 

Fans loved the picture which saw two of her children sleeping on the floor in her bedroom while doting dad Matt read them a bedtime story. 

Emma revealed that Matt’s stories have the children up for ‘hours’ and that cliffhangers leave the kids ‘screaming with rage’ because they’re so good.

Emma wrote in the caption: “Christmas Eve story time sleepover on the floor in our room!!

“Matt Willis making up tales that keep them hooked for nights on end, and cliffhangers that make them scream with rage!

“Merry Christmas everyone, stay safe.”


And that’s not where Matt and Emma’s unique parenting style ends. 

The celebrity parents are said to be going to extreme lengths to ensure their Hertfordshire mansion is everything their kids want and more. 

In April, it was revealed the couple were given the go-ahead by planners to build a Teletubbies-style grass mound at the bottom of their garden.

It’s reported that they want to create a 5ft-high green mound similar to Teletubbyland in the 1990s kids' TV series.

Their new garden will boast a sunken trampoline and oak swing. Sounds like a kids’ dream to us! 

In more celeb parenting news, Kate Lawler previously revealed they she didn’t want to be here anymore after having a baby, – she went to the darkest place she's ever been.

And Mrs Hinch shares her VERY graphic birth story with baby Lennie including mortifying moment her waters broke over a nurse.

Plus Stacey Solomon and Lauren Goodger lead the pregnant stars showing off their blossoming baby bumps.

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