X Factor Winners Where are They Now? Current Status of All 15 Seasons Winners: Know Hear-

by Moore Martin

X Factor Winners Where are They Now


“The X Factor,” a British reality television music competition created by Simon Cowell, premiered on September 4, 2004. Over the years, it has crowned 15 champions, each with their own unique journey. In this article, we will explore the current endeavors of former X Factor winners, from the very first champion to the most recent victor. Let’s dive into the lives and careers of these talented individuals.

The X Factor Legacy

“The X Factor” made its mark as a cultural phenomenon. Produced by Fremantle’s Talkback Thames and Cowell’s Syco Entertainment for ITV, the show ran for 445 episodes across fifteen series, with its final episode airing in December 2018. Hosted primarily by Dermot O’Leary, the judging panel featured notable figures from the music industry, including Simon Cowell, Louis Walsh, Sharon Osbourne, Cheryl, and others.

Contestants of all ages and backgrounds vied for a chance to showcase their singing talent, navigating auditions, bootcamps, and live rounds. Winners received a recording contract with Syco Music and a cash prize, albeit primarily allocated to marketing and recording costs. As a cultural phenomenon, “The X Factor” enjoyed high viewership, peaking with over 14 million viewers on average during its seventh series.

The show’s success led to the creation of an international franchise, and many of its participants, such as JLS, Little Mix, One Direction, and Ella Henderson, achieved chart-topping success. However, by 2011, viewership began to decline, prompting a temporary rest in 2019. Two spin-offs, “The X Factor: Celebrity” and “The X Factor: The Band,” were introduced in 2019. Ultimately, on July 28, 2021, ITV announced that there were no plans for another series, effectively shelving “The X Factor” as a significant chapter in British television history.

X Factor Winners Where are They Now?

Now, let’s take a closer look at the current status of all seasons of X Factor winners:

Season 1: Steve Brookstein

Steve Brookstein, mentored by Simon Cowell and crowned the inaugural champion on December 11, 2004, with the winner’s single “Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now)” (Phil Collins), took a hiatus lasting seven years after his 2014 releases. Resurfacing in the summer of 2021, Brookstein began debuting new music as a solo artist and with The Four Vandals.

Season 2: Shayne Ward

Shayne Ward, under the mentorship of Louis Walsh, secured victory on December 17, 2005, with the original single “That’s My Goal.” After releasing his fourth album, “Closer,” in 2015, Ward embarked on a three-year tenure as a regular on the soap opera “Coronation Street.” Currently, he is raising two children with his fiancée, actress Sophie Austin.

Season 4: Leon Jackson

Leon Jackson, guided by Dannii Minogue, emerged victorious on December 15, 2007, with the winner’s single “When You Believe” (Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston). Since the release of his first and only album, “Right Now,” in 2008, Jackson has generally stayed out of the limelight, and there are no indications of a career revival.

Season 5: Alexandra Burke

Under the mentorship of Cheryl, Alexandra Burke clinched victory on December 13, 2008, with the winner’s single “Hallelujah” (Leonard Cohen). Since 2014, Burke has played lead roles in West End musicals, participated in “Strictly Come Dancing,” and released her third album. In 2022, she welcomed her first child with Premier League footballer Darren Randolph.

Season 6: Joe McElderry

Joe McElderry, mentored by Cheryl and crowned winner on December 13, 2009, with the single “The Climb” (Miley Cyrus), holds the record as the youngest male “X Factor” winner. Breaking ground, he released his fourth album in 2012, with his fifth, “Saturday Night at the Movies,” becoming available in 2017. McElderry’s “Celebrate the Music” tour commenced in March 2023.

Season 7: Matt Cardle

Guided by Dannii Minogue, Matt Cardle emerged victorious on December 12, 2010, with the winner’s single “When We Collide” (Biffy Clyro). Working on new music as a solo artist and as a Seven Summers band member, Cardle’s last album, “Time to Be Alive,” was released in 2018.

Season 8: Little Mix

The first non-solo victors, Little Mix, mentored by Tulisa and winners on December 11, 2011, with the single “Cannonball” (Damien Rice), currently rank among the top 10 best-selling girl groups of all time. Becoming a trio after Jesy Nelson’s departure in December 2020, they announced a hiatus in early 2022 following their “Confetti” tour and the release of their greatest hits album, “Between Us.”

Season 9: James Arthur

James Arthur, mentored by Nicole Scherzinger, won on December 9, 2012, with the winner’s single “Impossible” (Shontelle). His fourth album, “It’ll All Make Sense in the End,” released in November 2021, has produced six singles. Arthur’s most successful song remains “Say You Won’t Let Go,” reaching #11 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2017.

Season 10: Sam Bailey

Mentored by Sharon Osbourne, Sam Bailey emerged victorious on December 15, 2013, with the winner’s single “Skyscraper” (Demi Lovato). Following the launch of her second album, “Sing My Heart Out,” in 2016, Bailey released several singles and performed as Mrs. Potts in an English stage production of “Beauty and the Beast” in 2022.

Season 11: Ben Haenow

Under the mentorship of Simon Cowell, Ben Haenow emerged as the winner on December 14, 2014, with the single “Something I Need” (OneRepublic). Since the 2018 release of his second album, “Alive,” Haenow has continued to perform live consistently. In 2021, he and his wife welcomed their first child.

Season 12: Louisa Johnson

Mentored by Rita Ora, Louisa Johnson, the youngest winner in “X Factor” history, won on December 13, 2015, with the winner’s single “Forever Young” (Bob Dylan). While supporting Westlife on their fall 2022 UK tour, Johnson has released several singles but has yet to release a full album or EP.

Season 13: Matt Terry

Under the mentorship of Nicole Scherzinger, Matt Terry secured victory on December 11, 2016, with the winner’s single “When Christmas Comes Around” (original). His debut album, “Trouble,” was released in 2017. Terry has since ventured into musical stage productions and starred as Stacee Jaxx in a touring production of “Rock of Ages.”

Season 14: Rak-Su

Mentored by Simon Cowell, Rak-Su emerged as the winners on December 3, 2017, with the original single “Dimelo.” Formerly a quartet, they now function as a trio following the departure of Mustafa Rahimtulla in November 2020. They released their fourth album (“Lost Tour”) and first mixtape (“Finally Free”) in April and September 2021, respectively.

Season 15: Dalton Harris

Mentored by Louis Tomlinson, Dalton Harris secured victory on December 2, 2018, with the winner’s single “The Power of Love” (Frankie Goes to Hollywood). The most recent winner, Harris has performed semi-regularly since the release of his debut single, “Cry,” in 2019.

X Factor Winners Where are They Now – FAQs

  1. Where is the first winner of The X Factor, Steve Brookstein, now? After a seven-year hiatus, Steve Brookstein, the inaugural champion, returned to the music scene in the summer of 2021, debuting new music both as a solo artist and with The Four Vandals.
  2. What is Shayne Ward, the winner of Season 2, up to these days? Shayne Ward, who won Season 2 in 2005, released his fourth album, “Closer,” in 2015. He then spent three years as a regular on the soap opera “Coronation Street” and is currently raising two children with his fiancée, actress Sophie Austin.
  3. How has Leona Lewis, the Season 3 winner, continued her career since winning? Leona Lewis, the Season 3 winner in 2006, has achieved success with five albums. After her Billboard chart-topping single “Bleeding Love,” she ventured into Broadway, acted as a judge on “The X Factor,” and welcomed her first child with husband Dennis Jauch.
  4. What is Alexandra Burke, the winner of Season 5, doing now? Since winning Season 5 in 2008, Alexandra Burke has played lead roles in West End musicals, participated in “Strictly Come Dancing,” and released her third album. In 2022, she gave birth to her first child with Premier League footballer Darren Randolph.
  5. What is the latest update on James Arthur, the Season 9 winner? James Arthur, winner of Season 9 in 2012, released his fourth album, “It’ll All Make Sense in the End,” in November 2021. His most successful song, “Say You Won’t Let Go,” reached #11 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2017.


“The X Factor” may have come to an end as a television show, but its legacy lives on through its talented winners. From chart-toppers to stage performers, these individuals have left their mark on the music industry and beyond. As they continue their journeys, fans eagerly await their next chapters.

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