She rose to fame in 2003 as a contestant on the first season of Australian Idol and placed fourth in the competition.
Paulini subsequently signed a recording contract with Sony BMG Australia and released her debut studio album One Determined Heart (2004), which debuted at number one on the ARIA Albums Chart and was certified platinum. In 2006, Paulini released her second studio album Superwoman, which failed to match the commercial success of her debut album.
The album was a moderate success, debuting at number 25 on the ARIA Albums Chart.
Paulini's fourth studio album Merry Christmas was also released later in 2015, featuring a collection of popular Christmas tunes.
Dicko commented on the dress saying "You should choose more appropriate clothes or shed some pounds", which resulted in a great deal of debate and controversy in the media relating to self-esteem and body image of teenage girls.
Nick Bond of au described Dicko's criticism of Paulini's gold dress as "one of the most controversial moments in Australian Idol history," while Andrew Bucklow from the same publication labelled it one of the show's "most infamous moments" ever.
There is no animosity, there is nothing negative." During February–March 2009 and again in October, Paulini alongside Christine Anu, Grace Knight and Monica Trapaga embarked on the Ladies of Jazz Tour in New South Wales, where they performed jazz classics from the 30's and 40's, as well as modern jazz hits.
"Scarless" marked the first time Paulini released music independently.
Paulini stated that the song is lyrically "about my journey over the past few years and coming into my skin after a struggle to find my voice, my artistry and above all, loving myself with the help of loved ones by my side." Both "Air It All Out" and "By My Side" failed to make any significant impact on the ARIA charts.The album included the platinum single "Angel Eyes", which spent three consecutive weeks at number one on the ARIA Singles Chart. Despite the underperformance of Superwoman, the album included the moderately successful single "Rough Day" and earned Paulini two nominations at the Australia/New Zealand Urban Music Awards.That same year, Paulini enjoyed commercial success again as a member of the Australian girl group Young Divas.The project was initially formed to promote a joint 17-date national tour, where all singers would perform their solo material and several songs as a group.In an interview with The Sydney Morning Herald, Coulter stated "We really want to get across that we're not a group.