Published Sunday, 04 November 2012
Rylan and Kye wait for the result (© Rex Features)
Both acts received the fewest public votes for the second time this year, but the Essex model survived again after Tulisa Contostavlos chose to take the result of their sing off to deadlock.
The Co Tyrone singer-songwriter, who will go on tour next year in support of her debut album, tweeted: "Did KyeSones1 just get sent home.... what the actual hell just happened?"
Mentor Gary Barlow was also visibly upset after losing his second act to Rylan, whom he openly dislikes.
The Essex boy, who has been labelled as an entertainer, surprised when he sang Des'ree's ballad Kissing You to stay in the competition, while Kye gave a powerful and heartfelt rendition of I Won't Give Up by Jason Mraz.
Rylan's mentor Nicole Scherzinger voted to save her boy. She said Rylan "not only brings light, energy and fun to the show but after that performance you bring art to the show."
Gary then voted to save his own act. "This is very, very simple, I'm sure everyone at home agrees, the sing off was completely won by Kye tonight," he said.
"Rylan I've enjoyed your fun in this competition but when you're put next to a real singer, you just do not compete."
Louis Walsh, who caused controversy when he chose to save Rylan over country singer Carolynne Poole, said the Essex model proved that he could really sing - adding he preferred Kye.
He then told the acts he was "going to do the right thing" and voted to boot off Rylan.
Tulisa, who had the final decision to make, said the sing off showcased one of the best performances by both singers.
"When it comes down to it...it's not just the singing competition, it's the X Factor," she said. "The act that I look forward to seeing each week is Rylan.
"I've got to go with my heart I'm sorry, the act I'm sending home is Kye."
The chimney cleaner lost in the deadlock, which is decided by the lowest number of public votes, but vowed to work on his own album after the show.