Why Emmy Russell Refused To Wear Makeup To Her ‘American Idol’ Audition

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Emmy Russell, the granddaughter of country music icon Loretta Lynn, recently stole the spotlight on the American Idol stage, aiming to carve out her own musical legacy separate from her famous family name.

Why Emmy Russell Chose Not To Wear Makeup During Her Audition

Dressed in a simple green hoodie and light-washed jeans, Emmy opted for a natural look, choosing to go makeup-free as she performed her original song “Skinny,” which candidly addressed her struggles with an eating disorder. In a recent interview with WKRN News 2, Emmy explained her choice to not wear makeup during her televised audition.

Emmy Russell’s refusal to wear makeup during her audition was driven by a desire for authenticity. Initially photographed with a significant amount of makeup in the beginning stages of the show, she made the decision to remove it before stepping onto the stage. By doing so, Emmy aimed to present her true self to the judges and viewers, free from any enhancements.

Her intention was clear: she wanted any approval she received to be based solely on her talent and genuine identity.

“By the time that my audition came, I took it all off because I really wanted to be myself and feel like if I got a ‘yes,’ I got a ‘yes’ for me,” Emmy explained.

Emmy Russell’s ‘Idol’ Audition

Emmy Russell’s American Idol audition was a heartfelt moment that showcased her musical journey and personal growth. Growing up performing alongside her famous grandmother, Loretta Lynn, Emmy’s roots in music run deep.

During the most recent episode of the singing competition, Emmy faced judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, and Luke Bryan, delivering emotional renditions of her original songs, “Skinny” and “Breakup Song.” Sharing the stories behind her music, Emmy revealed that “Breakup Song” stemmed from a painful relationship split, while “Skinny” addressed the pressures she encountered while touring with her grandmother, leading to an eating disorder.


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With a performance that touched the hearts for both the judges and viewers, Emmy earned a “yes” from all three judges, earning her a ticket to advance to the Hollywood round— marking a significant milestone in her solo career.

Watch Emmy Russell’s American Idol audition below.