Little Mix star Perrie Edwards has said her and her bandmates did not expect being in the group to “be this hard”.
On Tuesday, it was announced that Jesy Nelson was taking an extended break for “private medical reasons”.
Edwards told The Jonathan Ross Show on ITV the group are “willing to work” for their success – which has seen them score four UK number one singles, and launch their own TV talent show.
But, she added, chasing their pop dream had come at a cost.
“I don’t think we expected it to be this hard,” said Edwards.
“When you’re young and you think of being a pop star, you think, ‘Oh I want everyone to love me and ask for my autograph’.”
“We don’t rest, we don’t sleep,” she added. “But we love success so we’re willing to work for it and it’s been an amazing 10 years.”
The girl band, who were originally called Rhythmix, was formed in 2011 on ITV’s singing competition The X Factor.
This week, 29-year-old Nelson announced her decision to take a break after she missed the final of their BBC One talent show, The Search, and the group’s hosting of the MTV European Music Awards.
Nelson was absent from the recording of The Jonathan Ross Show, which was filmed on Wednesday.
Fellow star Leigh-Anne Pinnock noted how “people don’t see how hard it is, the things that go on behind the scenes”.
“People don’t understand the pressure,” she continued. “People sometimes see pop stars and think, ‘Oh it is glam and glitz’, but it is really hard.”
Jade Thirlwall explained that each member of the band supports the other, especially when the going gets tough
“We’ve got each other, that’s the beauty of being in a band,” said Thirlwall. “We just stay grounded with our friends and family.
“When we get time off we go straight home and see the family.
“Our mams would be the first to tell us off if we were getting a bit big headed,” she added.
Little Mix’s latest album, Confetti, entered the UK chart at number two last week, beaten only by Kylie Minogue.