Rebecca Ferguson has admitted she still feels sick when she watches The X Factor – even though she is no longer a contestant on the show.

The singer and mother-of-two, who finished second to Matt Cardle in the 2010 series, has gone on to forge a successful singing career, with record deals in the UK and US and an acclaimed debut album.

However she said that when she watches The X Factor – and when she recently sang on it – the nerves come flooding back.

“Despite everything I’ve done over the last two years, my album and appearing in America, I just felt like a contestant all over again when I went back in October to perform on The X Factor,” she said.

“It was really nerve-wracking. I was in a state beforehand about what to wear and I took ages to choose my outfit. It was only when I finally walked on stage that I was able to tell myself, ‘Calm down, relax and have fun’ – and I did.”

The 26-year-old added that she knows exactly what this year’s crop of contestants are going through each weekend.

“Each time the results come through for them, I feel sick, just as I used to when I was on it,” Rebecca revealed. The strain of not knowing whether you’re going to be there for another week is unbelievable.”