Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Women with X Factor

leona_hero.jpg

Scouse soulstress Rebecca Ferguson and rapping teenager Cher Lloyd are the two female finalists, up against Matt Cardle and One Direction in this weekend’s X Factor showdown. Stylist rewinds the previous six series and salutes the singing contest’s most memorable women

Series 1 (winner: Steve Brookstein)

Rowetta Satchell was the most memorable female in series one. The ex-Happy Mondays backing singer was a recovering alcoholic and victim of domestic violence, which gave her resurgence on the show a redemptive quality. But her erratic outbursts soon repelled public sympathy and she left in week 8.

Series 2 (winner: Shayne Ward)

Maria Lawson was the bookies’ favourite thanks to her diminutive appearance and modest manner. She remained so, until her shock departure after Louis Walsh controversially saved The Conway Sisters (four pulchritudinous sisters from Ireland who epitomised compliant femininity)

Series 3 (winner: Leona Lewis)

Lewis won the show with her diva-like performances but conducted herself with humility and restraint. When complimented by the judges, she smiled shyly and thanked them, but you’d never catch her going on about her “destiny” like Katie Waissel. She maintains a public image that is pleasant but vague.

Series 4 (winner: Leon Jackson)

Niki Evans was a reassuringly maternal figure whose appeal was tied up with her emotional “journey” and determination to win for her late father. She went out in the semis. Sarah Smith, the saccharine blond in brother/sister duo Same Difference, made it all the way to the final with her fixed cheerleader smile.

Series 5 (winner: Alexandra Burke)

Burke played a smart game, staying was pretty invisible during the show’s early weeks but slowly growing in stature as other females were ejected. These included Diana Vickers - nicknamed The Claw thanks to her hand mannerism when singing. But she later bagged a record deal and a starring role in the West End.

Series 6 (winner: Joe McElderry)

Essex mum Stacey Solomon has just enjoyed a renaissance in this year’s I’m A Celebrity… but the Dagenham-born single mum was initially a hit with X Factor viewers, coming third overall thanks to her sunny disposition, unaffected delights with the whole experience and lack of naked ambition.

Words: Julia Raeside

Image credit: Rex Features

Related

106582594.jpg

Faces to watch

rexfeatures_1133238a.jpg

Stylish Party Tips

rex_betlynch_hero.jpg

The Street's Style Icons

Comments

More

Ewan McGregor cancels ‘GMB’ appearance in defence of the Women’s March

"Didn't realise @piersmorgan was host. Won't go on with him after his comments about #WomensMarch"

by Harriet Hall
24 Jan 2017

The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Emily Ratajkowski's French life to Victoria Beckham's new love

by Nicola Colyer
24 Jan 2017

Kylie Minogue explains why she's decided to change her name

“Minogue has never tripped off the tongue”

by Kayleigh Dray
23 Jan 2017

Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson’s new film is inspired by Donald Trump

Its title? Nasty Women.

by Moya Crockett
20 Jan 2017

Obama pens moving farewell letter to the US people

“You made me a better President, and you made me a better man”

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Jan 2017

The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Naomi Campbell's super throwback to Mindy Kaling's farewell

by Nicola Colyer
20 Jan 2017

Melania Trump refuses to let Donald direct her at inauguration event

He was seen barking instructions at her – but she ignored him and walked away

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Jan 2017

David Beckham confirmed for special Desert Island Discs episode

Time to find out what it’s like to be stuck on a desert island with David Beckham

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Jan 2017

Chrissy Teigen wants you to know that everyone gets stretch marks

In her words: “Whatevs.”

by Moya Crockett
20 Jan 2017

Lena Dunham talks about painful endometriosis battle in podcast

“I felt like I’d done something terribly wrong just by wanting to feel better”

by Kayleigh Dray
20 Jan 2017