Zayn is one of five cover stars of the September issue of ELLE UK. The ‘Pillowtalk’ singer got candid about his solo career, his relationship with his mum and sisters, developing his personal style and the negatives of social media, amongst other things.
During his interview, it was inevitable that One Direction would be mentioned. Zayn revealed that his decision to leave was based on the feeling of having done everything he could do within the band. He said “‘At that time in my life I felt I had done everything I could do there and I just needed to change it up.”
It didn’t feel brave. I just don’t have it in me to feel fully secure in anything I do. I always strive towards something better. It’s why I think sometimes I come across the wrong way, a bit distant. I’m just stressed out trying to control how I’m perceived. I think about things a lot.
Zayn’s life has been a whirlwind over the past year and he reveals just how much it’s changed since he walked away from the world’s biggest boyband. “My entire life has changed in the last year. I’m still taking it all in. I’ve found so much out about myself. Mostly how in love with music I still was. The album is a build up of six years and never being able to express what I wanted to say. I had something to get off my chest.”
Of course, leaving the band has given Zayn creative freedom in terms of music. However, he also now has the ability to express and develop his personal style. He said: “Since leaving One Direction I’ve been given the freedom to be able to wear whatever I want and that’s made it more interesting. More creative. I can say I want to wear metal arms and it’ll happen.”
Despite the upheaval and big changes in Zayn’s life, his relationship with his mum and sisters has stayed the same. They’ve remained a source of strength and sanity for the singer, with Zayn stating, “I enjoyed the womanly influence. I have a lot of respect for women because of them. They are so strong, powerful and do everything themselves…”
His girlfriend, model Gigi Hadid, has also been a rock for Zayn. On their relationship, he said, “She’s super intelligent, I think that’s why it works so well. And we do the same type of job so we get that with each other.”
During the interview, Zayn also touched on the negatives of social media. He revealed that he tries to use his mobile for good old fashioned phone calls alone, which explains why he isn’t the most avid user of social media.
As much as social networking is a big thing now, there’s something to be said about having something real, if I had a choice I would take the camera off everyone’s iPhone and make sure we didn’t have Twitter or Facebook. It affects art form. There’s something to be said about living in the moment. I try to keep my phone for calls.
Despite singing being his main focus right now, Zayn also expressed an interest in acting in the future. “’I started acting when I was in school with theatre studies and then music came after. It completely stopped when I joined the band but I’d definitely be interested if I was given the right role.”
Zayn’s full interview is available to read in ELLE UK’s September issue, out on August 3.
photo credit: Nabil Elderkin