Tulisa knows how to get the X Factor as she copies Cheryl Cole's fishtail plait for Liverpool auditions

By Sarah Bull

Copycat: Tulisa Contostavlos sported a fishtail plait almost identical to Cheryl Cole's as she arrived at the X Factor auditions in Liverpool today

It must be hard living in the shadow of previous X Factor judge Cheryl Cole.

So Tulisa Contostavlos could be forgiven for using Cheryl for style inspiration as she takes to the panel for this year's sereis.

The 23-year-old singer arrived at the X Factor auditions in Liverpool today sporting a side fishtail plait almost identical to Cheryl's style last October.

And it's not the first time Tulisa has taken inspiration from Cheryl's previous looks, as she was seen wearing a hooded dress similar to the ones favoured by Cheryl as she took to the stage at T4 On The Beach over the weekend.

But despite her copycat hairstyle, Tulisa, who is celebrating her 23rd birthday today, looked stunning in a chic Alexander McQueen red pleated dress and black mesh heeled sandals as she posed for photographers outside the auditions.

Meanwhile, Tulisa's fellow judge Kelly Rowland also caused a stir as she arrived for the auditions.

Lady in red: Tulisa looked stunning in her red pleated dress, which she teamed with black mesh sandals

Happy birthday! Tulisa, who turns 23 today, was greeted with a huge cheer as she got out of her car

Meeting the fans: Tulisa spent some time meeting the people who had waited for ages to catch a glimpse of her

Kelly, 30, showed off her incredible figure in a pair of tiny Stella McCartney floral shorts, teamed with a blue vest top and navy jacket, teamed with huge orange platform sandals and a huge pair of sunglasses.

Arriving in the city, Kelly tweeted: 'Alright Liverpool... Bring it on!'
She later added: 'Everyone wish my fellow #XFactor judge @officialtulisa a happy happy birthday!!!'

The girls' fellow X Factor judges Gary Barlow and Louis Walsh also cut a smart appearance as they arrived at Liverpool's Echo Arena for the auditions.

Leggy lady: Kelly Rowland also caused a stir in her outfit - a pair of floral shorts with a blue vest top and platforms

Last night, Tulisa was photographed playing it safe in a black dress and tights as she celebrated her birthday out in Liverpool.

Tulisa teamed her skater-style dress with a pair of huge sunglasses and swept her long brown hair to the side as she headed out with members of the X Factor team including presenter Dermot O'Leary.

Later in the evening, X Factor presenter Dermot tweeted his followers a picture of Tulisa enjoying her birthday cake with the caption, 'Happy birthday young lady!'

Greeting the fans: The former Destiny's Child singer looked delighted as she waved to fans and signed autographs

Making her way in: Kelly waves as she arrives at Liverpool's Echo Arena for the next round of auditions

He later added: 'That, by the way is Tulisa. And it's her birthday, and it's a cake etc etc.'

Meanwhile, despite Tulisa's profile being increased dramatically since her inclusion on the X Factor judging panel, it seems she is struggling to adjust to her elevated celebrity status.

She revealed to her Twitter followers yesterday: 'So apparently I have 2 bring security with me if I go ibiza this year? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

Here come the boys: Gary Barlow and Louis Walsh looked smart in their outfits as they arrived

Posing up: Louis smiled widely as he had a picture taken with a group of fans

'I think they must be doing it in case any1 starts with me and they have 2 hold me back 2 stop me getting in2 trouble!'

She later added: 'This year I shall b sporting boxer shorts on my head instead of thongs,even more gold chains & a new tat saying CHAVTASTIC on my forehead!'

But while Tulisa might be struggling to comprehend her elevated level of fame, it's working well for her band N-Dubz.

Understated: The night before, Tulisa didn't quite have the X Factor in her plain black outfit as she celebrated her birthday in Liverpool

Cake time! X Factor presenter Dermot O'Leary tweeted a picture of Tulisa with her birthday cake at the restaurant in Liverpool

Bandmate Dappy said he is looking forward to the increased popularity the group will have following Tulisa's appearance on The X Factor.

He said: 'I can't help but think, "Wow, we've really made it now". She's gonna be brutal. Tulisa will change the way the show is.'

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