Tulisa Contostavlos loved X Factor 2011 auditions in Manchester and Liverpool!

Tulisa Contostavlos 2011

Tulisa Contostavlos has said her favourite audition stops for this year's X Factor auditions were in Manchester and Liverpool, snubbing her home city of London! Speaking ahead of the launch of the new series later this month, Tulisa added she was trying to be as down to earth as possible.

"I try to live my life as normally as possible with no airs or graces. I rarely read the papers, don’t buy into the hype and I’m an expert at hiding from the paparazzi!" the N-Dubz star said.

But she confessed there were a few requests she made on her rider. "Nando’s chicken and Redbull – always!" the singer admitted.

With The X Factor 2011 set to start in just few weeks time, Tulisa explained that while she's had fun at this year's auditions, two cities stood out above all others - and neither were London!

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"I had such a laugh in Manchester," the new judge explained. "The contestants were really wacky and original. Although, backstage in Liverpool was lovely – it was my birthday and the crew bought me a massive cake which I devoured!"

Asked about what qualities she brought to this year's new look panel - which includes US star Kelly Rowland and Take That front man Gary Barlow, Tulisa told the official X Factor website: "Honesty and fire!"

And what advice did Simon Cowell give hip hop star before joining The X Factor in May of this year?

Tulisa says: "He told me to be myself. I approached meeting him as I would a battle – I was determined to win him over and impress - thankfully I succeeded."

The 23-year-old singer will make her debut as an X Factor judge when the series returns on August 20 on ITV1 - and we can't wait!

> Tulisa Contostavlos loving her make over from The X Factor's 'glam squad'

> In Pictures: Hot new snaps of The X Factor 2011 judges!

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