The mother-of-two has discussed it for the first time in her new book ‘Happy’, revealing that she suffered while in her primetime post as a BBC Radio One DJ, where she was for six years between 2009 and 2015.
The 35-year-old, explains that she had “massive warning signs” after realising depression ran in her family: “I felt so drained and my lust for everything that I love wasn’t there anymore.”
“I’m very optimistic by nature, I wake up in the morning and I’m very excited about my day, so I’m pumped and enthusiastic about the smaller things in life and that was dead.
“Everything was a drag and felt heavy. I felt anti-social, cut-off, alienated.”
Cotton, who is currently presenting AOL’s series ‘Fearne On Fashion’, credits her job and her husband - guitarist and son of Rolling Stone’s Ronnie Wood - Jesse Wood, with aiding her recovery.
“My job became a hindrance and help. It was very draining, but at the same time it was possibly helping me in the right direction,” she explained.
“Having one thing that feels quite normal, when everything else is chaotic, is quite healthy,” as she continued her stint on the BBC show, even in her “dark days”.
Cotton says Wood, who she married in 2014, was supporting her behind the scenes at home: “I’m exceptionally lucky that I met someone who’s so unbelievably free-spirited and curious about life and open minded.
“He is constantly a good soundboard and has a very positive outlook.”
The former ‘Top of The Pops’ presenter then went to seek medical help and had an appointment with her doctor who prescribed her antidepressants, which she took for a couple of months.
“I decided it would get my head about the clouds for a moment. I’d never taken them before so it felt like it be worth a go,” she said.
Ultimately, Cotton explains that letting go of perfectionism allowed her to recover, and stop taking the medication: “Letting go of perfect was important…I was trying to do so many things and putting so much pressure on myself – and why?”
“Perfect doesn’t exist. I cut back a lot on work, and focused a lot more on family.”
Cotton has two children, Rex, 3, and Honey, 1, and is also stepmother to Arthur, 14, and Lola, 10 from her husband’s previous marriage to model Catherine ‘Tilly’ Boone.