How An Autoimmune Illness Kickstarted Lauren Daigle's Mrs. Hinch-Approved Career

For Bustle UK's music issue, Noisemakers, we wanted to spotlight the new talent you're destined to find on your playlist in the next 12 months, as well as the industry heavy hitters you know and love. Bustle UK's social media editor (and all-round music superfan) Charlie Mock scoured the scene to find the finest up-and-coming artists to take on the Bustle Booth. Read on to find out how award-winning singer-songwriter Lauren Daigle left her mark.

Some people are born knowing exactly where they want to end up. Lauren Daigle isn't one of them. "I was the girl that wanted like five different careers," she admits to Bustle. Her potential destinies included a life in medicine ("I just loved the human body") or an existence in criminal law, securing justice for victims of human trafficking.

But her teenage dreams were put on hold when, at the age of 15, she was diagnosed with cytomegalovirus, an autoimmune illness that left her unable to go to school for almost two years. Music gave her a focus.

She would walk "around the house singing all of the time," she says. (Celine Dion was one of the top choices.) Her brother wasn't the biggest fan, jokingly asking her mum to "turn this girl off." Her mum would simply reply, "No, you never know what's happening in her heart."

When Daigle was just 17, she took her soulful voice to a bigger stage: American Idol. She made her way into the competition three times between 2010 and 2012, but she was ultimately given a no by the comically evil Simon Cowell. That rejection clearly hasn't scarred her as she was recently announced as a celebrity mentor for the show's contestants, per PEOPLE.

Lauren Daigle

Undeterred, she released her first album, How Can It Be, in 2015, a contemporary Christian sound that shot straight to the top of the genre's album chart. A Christmas collection came a year later, followed by a third record in 2018. Look Up Child has seen her stardom rise. Daigle now has numerous awards to her name, including two Grammys and three Billboard Awards, and celebrity fans ranging from Miley Cyrus and Selena Gomez to Britain's favourite cleaning influencer, Mrs Hinch.

Her wholly positive vibe centres on "hope, joy, and freedom," three ideals that any person can get behind. She is currently in the midst of a tour promoting them to thousands upon thousands of people. "You Say" — a powerful identity ballad and Daigle's latest single — is a particular fan fave.

Giving up her old life has been difficult. "It’s really hard dealing with friendships and relationships," she says. "There's nothing consistent. It's not like you wake up and you go [to] the gym with your best friend, and then you grab a coffee, and then you go to work and do your nine-to-five, and then you go see a show together. That life doesn’t happen."

Although Daigle's career path isn't perhaps exactly how she imagined, the industry has certainly matched her expectations. The only downside, she alludes, is the way working in music changes how you feel about music. "I have to work to continue absorbing music as I used to," she says. "A lot of times you can start to critique it, and say, 'Oh, I would have done this there,' or, 'Oh my gosh, that’s brilliant, I love what they did there,' versus just taking a natural approach to simply enjoying music."

So what's next in store for the 27-year-old? Well, it's not what you might think. "My friend and I want to launch a [fashion] line, so getting that in the works, travelling around, learning about different fabrics, all that stuff," she says.

Check out what else Daigle is into with our Bustle Booth questionnaire below.