Aidan Turner reveals the secret behind Poldark's appeal

The actor, who got upset when pictures of his pecs were published, says he 'wants to grow a beard and put on lots of weight' for his next role

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The Independent Online

The Independent’s TV critic hailed it as the end for Colin Firth’s Mr Darcy and his sopping wet shirt when Aidan Turner arrived in Poldark and eclipsed him as the period drama sex object du jour.

After attracting an audience of 6.2 million last week, the actor has revealed the secret behind Ross Poldark’s rugged looks - and those glistening pecs.

The 31-year-old Dublin-born actor revealed (in response to some very serious speculation on social media), that it wasn't fake tan, but instead “some kind of baby oil” that was applied to his torso during filming.


Turner said he hit the gym to get into shape for the role which has seen him strip off to brave the chilly Cornish sea for a swim.

“I just didn’t see Poldark having a beer belly or being out of shape, given his lifestyle,” he said in an interview with The Sunday Times.

He added: “In my next role I want to grow a beard and put on loads of weight.”

Turner's remarks follow his apparent disgruntlement at the release of a topless production photograph which was posted on Twitter by the BBC.

He told Newsbeat at the time:  "I don't know why the BBC are releasing photos of it. It's a bit strange. It's not a stripper show."

Poldark is an eight-part series set against the rugged backdrop of 18th Century Cornwall. Turner plays the smouldering hero Ross Poldark who returns home from the American War of Independence to discover his intended engaged to his cousin.

Poldark continues on BBC One at 9pm tonight