It shocks us. It surprises us. It makes us laugh and makes us cry….and ok yes, it sometimes makes us want to close our eyes, cover our ears and throw our television sets out of the window. In fact, to quote an all-too-familiar phrase, it really is like Marmite – but whether we love it or hate it, we can’t help but acknowledge that the summer has raced away with us and it’s that time of year once again….Yes, that’s right, The X-Factor has returned!

So what is it about a watching bunch of deluded hopefuls desperately seek their ultimate goal of recognition and affirmation that entices us back every year? Is it that we like to see the unfortunate fall, the unlucky lose, and the occasional underdog rise to the occasion and beat all the odds? I’m guessing that it’s what these contestants all have in common that strikes a chord with us viewers. I would argue that there’s something in their desperation, their hope, that appeals to us all, a part of us that yearns for adventure, excitement and an opportunity to become something bigger than we’ve ever been before.

For many, life can become so monochromatic and bland. It’s easy enough to slip into the same old routines and habits, and to get dragged down with the mundanity of our everyday existence. So are we therefore on some level inspired by the gritty tenacity of the contestants on shows like this? I believe that maybe their boldness, persistence and unwavering self-belief brings out the hidden aspirations in us all and stirs us, in some small way, to try and introduce a little more colour into our own lives.

So, this autumn time, as you sit down to watch yet another ropey rendition of ‘I Will Always Love You’ being belted out across your lounge, why not be inspired to brighten up your own surroundings with an injection of colour into your living space? Try leaving the magnolias and creams behinds and make a real statement by venturing bravely into a more bold and vibrant world with Johnstones Matt Colours paint. Whether it’s the mysterious purple-grey hue of ‘Diva’ that appeals, or the fresh citrus bright of ‘Lime Crush’ that catches your eye, there’s no better time to brighten up your living area. This zesty paint collection gives a smooth and rich coverage, making it the perfect choice to serve as a lively compliment to other colours, or a simple must-have for that fearless stand-out ‘feature wall’ you’ve always wanted. So go on, why not give your living room a colourful edge this autumn – give it that all-important ‘undefinable something’ which makes it stand out as special. Make Simon Cowell proud and give your lounge the X-Factor!

But before you rush off to choose which vibrant shade is for you, I’ll leave you with some interesting ‘did you know’ facts about Britain’s most popular and, dare I say, colourful reality TV show:

Did you know…..

* There have been 12 series, 358 episodes and 39 number one singles since its launch in 2004.

* The most popular series was series 7, which picked up on average 14 million viewers each week.

* One year over 200,000 people auditioned for the X-Factor.

* Queueing to audition can take up to 15 hours!

* Contestants sometimes have to audition in front of the show’s producers four times before they even get seen by the judges.

* When Simon Cowell left the X-Factor in 2011, he personally asked Noel Gallagher to take his place as head judge, reportedly offering a whopping £2 million salary. However, Noel politely declined, apparently because Saturday night is his ‘night off!’