X Factor's Sam Bailey tells Marie Claire what it means to win the 2013 show, be first to read the exclusive interview...
Sam Bailey has been crowned The X Factor 2013 winner, as she received 1 million votes in Sunday night’s final.
The former prison officer, 36, beat Nicholas McDonald in an emotional showdown, which saw her duet with Nicole Scherzinger and wow in a series of show-stopping ensembles.
Marie Claire got the first word from Sam backstage at Wembley Arena, where she told us how the ITV talent show had changed her life.
‘For me it’s fear of the unknown,’ she confessed from the make-up chair on Saturday. ‘I’m excited but I’m nervous. I don’t know how I’m going to feel when I get out there because this is something I’ve not experienced.’
After spending much of the competition as the frontrunner, the mum-of-two remains incredibly humble, telling us: ‘[X Factor] hasn’t changed me for who I am, it’s just made me the person that I used to be.
‘I would say that before the show I was at the heaviest I’ve ever been and I’d lost all my confidence, and being in this show has given me the willpower to become who I used to be again.’
‘To look after myself a bit more and fulfill any dreams that I’ve got, because life’s too short,’ she says on the biggest lesson she’ll take away from her emotional X Factor experience.
And after telling us how much she’d love to duet with Beyoncé (as well as Michael Bolton), Sam is now looking at a opening slot for Queen B’s Mrs Carter tour in 2014. Yikes!
Did you watch Sam win this weekend’s X Factor final?
Watch Sam’s live duet with Nicole Scherzinger below…