BRADFORD lad Zayn Malik’s life took a 180-degree turn when he became one-fifth of the biggest boy band in the world, One Direction, in 2010.
Zayn’s interest in poetry and writing made him a natural songwriter, and even if his goal wasn’t stardom, he exhibited traits of a gifted performer from a young age. His first performance was with Jay Sean as a young schoolboy and that proved to be turning point in Zayn’s life – it gave him the confidence to audition for The X Factor.
The seventh season of the singing reality show gave birth to the global pop phenomenon sensation called One Direction. Zayn garnered millions of fans who fell in love with not just his voice, but his unconventional good looks as well.
However, six years later, he decided to pursue a solo music career. Talking about his split from One Direction, Zayn said in 2015 he found that there was no room for him “to experiment creatively”.
It was only after the split that Zayn opened up about the issues he was struggling with during the peak of his career. While he constantly dealt with anxiety resulting from life in the limelight, he also battled an eating disorder. In a 2017 interview, Zayn said eating was the only thing he felt he could control.
“Every area of my life was so regimented and controlled, it was the one area where I could say, ‘No, I’m not eating that’,” he said.
In 2016, Zayn kickstarted his solo musical career with the release of the critically acclaimed Mind of Mine, for which he collaborated with musicians such as Naughty Boy and Krept and Konan.
The lead single in the album, Pillowtalk, debuted at number one in the UK and US, making him the first UK artist to