Lori Loughlin opens up about her storied career and how being a mom 'keeps her young'

By Erica Cupido

Her role on Full House will always have a special place in our hearts. The family sitcom wrapped in 1995, but actress Lori Loughlin is winning fans over again. This summer, not only can viewers see her again as “Aunt Becky” on the sitcom’s revival, Fuller House, but they can also catch her as Abigail Stanton on When Calls the Heart (Sundays, CBC). “Oh, I love it,” says Lori, 53, of stepping back in time to portray an independent café owner. “It’s so much fun.”

When Calls the Heart stars Jack Wagner (Melrose Place) and, new to the current third season, Lori’s longtime friend Brooke Shields.

At home, Lori has two budding stars of her own with her husband of 20 years, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli. Her eldest daughter, Isabella, 18, is an aspiring actress, and her youngest, Olivia, 17, is a popular YouTube personality. Lori tells Hello! her girls know they can turn to their mother whenever they need to -- but the star learns as much from them as they do her!

What was it that made When Calls the Heart stand out for you?

It was a period piece, and I liked that it was centred around the women of the town. It’s about one young woman’s journey, how she comes into this community and affects our lives.

What was it like having Brooke Shields join the cast?

It was a lot of fun. I’ve known Brooke since we were kids. We started off modelling when we were 11 and 12. She’s so nice and very smart. She has such good energy and was a lovely addition.

Will we ever see any Full House stars on When Calls the Heart?

I don’t think so. If it were anyone, my guess would be Candace [Cameron Bure]. I tend to think that every show should try to stand on its own.

Looking back at your eight years on Full House, did you realize at the time that you were making life-long friends?

We knew we had a great connection, but I don’t know that any of us could have ever known we’d have the friendship that we formed today. We had no way of knowing that, or even the fact that the show would come back again after 25 years. No one would have [predicted] the show would have such staying power.

How do you and your Full House co-stars keep in touch?

We have group texts. We email, talk or meet for lunch individually. John [Stamos, who played Uncle Jesse] will have a BBQ, I’ll have people over. Jeff Franklin, the creator of the show, is really good about always putting things together.

When you meet your fans, what’s often the first thing they want to know?

I used to get a lot of, “What’s it like to kiss John Stamos?” It’s not so much what they want to know, but the message they want to convey is: “That show meant so much to me.” Or often people say, “I grew up with the show and now I’m watching it with my own children.”

When did your daughters realize that you had fans?

When they were 9 or 10. But I think they realized the impact of Full House before Fuller House came on. When they put the Fuller House promo up on YouTube it had gotten so many millions of views, my younger daughter – who has a YouTube channel of her own – called me up and said, “I never realized what a big show this was.”

Your other daughter wants to be an actress. Do your girls come to you for advice about being in the spotlight?

Yes, we have a lot of talks and I’m always there to guide them. It’s all part of their growth, development and learning how to handle yourself in the world. I’m always right there to guide them and to hear what’s going on.

What have you learned from them?

A lot about social media. [ Laughs] They keep me current. Kids have a way of keeping you young.

Do you enjoy sharing parts of your life on social media?

I do. It’s thought out, I don’t post everything. I think I stay true to myself and share what I want to. I don’t overshare.

You and Mossimo will mark your 20th wedding anniversary this year. Have you made any plans to celebrate?

Our anniversary always falls around [U.S.] Thanksgiving, which is good because we’re around family, but it’s also somewhat challenging because you don’t want to take off. Maybe we’ll plan a quiet weekend away or a fun night in Vegas.

How do you two spend your downtime?

I like to golf. I’m terrible but I love it. My husband is a great golfer. He has a golf clothing line and is super passionate about the game.

HELLO! Canada magazine is available for your tablet and smartphone. Get HELLO! Canada, PEOPLE, Vanity Fair and over 100 more of the world’s best magazines for one low monthly price at Texture by Next Issue. CLICK HERE to sign up for a free trial.