Born Zayn Jawaad Malik on January 12, 1993, he was later on known nationwide as Zayn Malik, one of the boys in the famous One Direction. The Bradford native auditioned for the seventh season of "The X Factor" in Manchester back in 2010, singing "Let Me Love You" by rhythm-and-blues vocalist Mario. He was accepted to the next round and almost eliminated during the bootcamp stages because he refused to dance. Though couldn't make it to the final round, he was chosen by the show's judge Simon Cowell to be teamed up with fellow contestants Harry Styles, Niall Horan, Liam Payne and Louis Tomlinson to form a new act called One Direction. The fivesome then went on competing in the reality talent show and finished in third place. They were then immediately signed to Cowell's Syco music label.
It didn't take long for Zayn and his fellow bandmates to experience success, thanks to their debut single "What Makes You Beautiful" which was quick to become a hit after being released in September 2011. The band continued their domination with their first album "Up All Night". Not only the set became a best seller in UK, but also hitting No. 1 on the US Billboard charts, making them the first UK group to accomplish such achievement. Following the success, Zayn alongside Niall, Harry, Liam, and Louis released two follow-up albums "Take Me Home" (2012) and "Midnight Memories" (2013), which both also went success.
Having his own fan base, Zayn was often dubbed the "bad boy" of One Direction due to his mischievous behavior, many tattoos and heavy smoking habit. The Muslim singer used to date "The X Factor" fellow contestants Geneva Lane, Rebecca Ferguson, who is six years his senior, and Perrie Edwards. He then got engaged to Perrie in August 2013 after two years of dating.
Following the release of One Direction's 2014 album "Four", the group went on a world tour. During the Asian leg on the trek, Zayn was rumored to be cheating on his fiancee Perrie Edwards after he was spotted with another woman. After that, Zayn took a break from the tour and was reported returning to the U.K. Later, he announced that he left the band in order to become "a normal 22-year-old."
Despite his statement that he just wanted to live a normal life, numerous rumors started circulating online that he's actually readying a solo career with the help of Naughty Boy. The news prompted a feud between Zayn and his former bandmate Louis Tomlinson. In mid-2015, Zayn finally confirmed that he's indeed planning to perform as a solo artist by announcing his recording deal with RCA Records.
In several interviews after his exit from 1D, Zayn revealed that he never really wanted to be in the band. He said that he and his former bandmates had different musical taste. Though so, he claimed he tried to stay friends with the boys, but they kept giving him the cold shoulder.
In early 2016, Zayn released his debut solo single, "Pillowtalk". The song, which came along with its music video that stars Zayn's new girlfriend Gigi Hadid, was received well by fans. It made its debut on the Hot 100 at No. 1, making Zayn the first British act to start atop the chart with his first single.