In 2016, 17-year-old X-Factor hopeful, Samantha Lavery, took to the stage. Clad in leather attire and noticeable makeup, she performed her piece.
But Simon Cowell quickly interjected and told Lavery that she needn’t over style herself with her appearance. He then criticized her song choice, calling it terrible, and sent her on her way.
People thought that would be the end of Lavery’s story but Cowell surprised viewers when he called her back as a wildcard. The wildcard contestants are invited back to Cowell’s mansion in Malibu and are given another chance to impress him.
When Lavery came back she was dressed in a similar style to what she had when she made her first appearance.
She wore short overalls half buttoned and heavy eye makeup. When Cowell saw her, he wasn’t too happy for a second time. He told her that he wanted her to take the mask off and perform. He added that he wanted to know who she really was.
Cowell was accompanied by additional judges and former Spice Girls, Mel B and Emma Bunton. The women disagreed with Cowell calling for the removal of Lavery’s makeup. They agreed that as a young woman she was allowed to experiment with her look.
Lavery took Cowell’s advice, though, and returned with an entirely new look.
When she returned later that day, she had done up the buttons on her overalls and removed all of her makeup.
She performed a song for the judges, which they all loved. Bunton admitted that she could listen to Lavery sing forever.
Once she made it through to the live shows, her relationship with Cowell significantly improved. In an interview with OK!, Lavery said, “He really cares about our happiness – he’s said that if we’re ever unhappy with something, we have to let him know.”
She added, “’I know some people think Simon shouldn’t have told me to wear less makeup, but it’s only turned out to be a positive thing,”