August 18, 2008
They are famously brisk and direct with the brave women who dare to come to them for style advice.
But Trinny Woodall and Susannah Constantine might be on the receiving end of some harsh truths themselves after it emerged that ITV is unlikely to renew their contract.
They face the axe after the ratings from their Undress The Nation show reached an all-time low.
Trinny and Susannah quit their successful BBC format, What Not To Wear, for a 1.2million 'golden handcuffs' deal with ITV in 2005.
During their glory days at the BBC, the makeover presenters attracted more than 7million viewers.
But their show on the commercial broadcaster, which airs in the all-important 9pm slot, has attracted only 2.5million viewers in recent days - only 11.9 per cent of the available audience.
Overall, ITV last week suffered its lowest weekly audience share since records began with 16.1 per cent.
Trinny and Susannah's current series is airing on Thursday nights, with a further series lined up for autumn, but beyond that their future on the channel is in doubt.
While ITV bosses say no decision has been made about the pair's future, insiders privately admit that the broadcaster cannot justify another bumper pay deal.
The current economic climate means a number of well-paid presenters are faced with big pay cuts or losing their exclusive deals.
Carol Vorderman quit Countdown after its producers Granada, part of ITV, tried to get her to take a 90 per cent pay cut.
The commercial broadcaster is unlikely to take such drastic action against Trinny and Susannah.
However, they could be moved from their exclusive deal to a cheaper programme-by-programme contract, which would allow them to work for other channels.
BBC sources say there is little enthusiasm to re-sign the pair and insiders are now claiming that the public fascination with the outspoken presenters has come to an end.
An ITV source said: 'The show has been a huge disappointment.
'They paid a lot to bring them over, but they won't be renewing the current deal.'
Newer - and nicer - fashion experts such as Gok Wan, whose Channel 4 show How To Look Good Naked is a low-key success, have stolen much of the limelight from Trinny and Susannah.
The pair have insisted that the 'ultimate accolade' is not in viewing figures or book sales but in the 'thousands of letters' they receive.
But despite their fan base the pair have come under fire from other celebrities. Miss Vorderman famously described them as resembling 'an anorexic transvestite' and a 'carthorse in a bin liner'.
An ITV spokesman said: 'Trinny and Susannah are an important part of the ITV family.
As well as the series which is currently on air, they return in the autumn with a third series of Undress the Nation.'
He would not comment on whether the deal was being renewed.
A spokesman for the pair said negotiations on the subject were not due to take place for the next few months.