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Zayn Malik Made a 'Conscious Decision' to Take Fashion Seriously Post-One Direction

The newly solo star talks about his approach to style in his new book, 'Zayn.'
Zayn Malik with Gigi Hadid at the 2016 Met Gala. Photo: Getty Images

Zayn Malik with Gigi Hadid at the 2016 Met Gala. Photo: Getty Images

Former One Direction member Zayn Malik released his first memoir, Zayn, on Tuesday, and among the 23-year-old's revelations about splitting with the band that made him a star are notes about his recent love of high fashion

Alongside an image of him in an embroidered Valentino coat is the story of his individual aesthetic. He says that while growing up, he always experimented with style, and being in the public eye at a young age made him more cautious about his approach to it. Like the tone and subject matter of his music, though, that all changed after One Direction — thanks to stylist Jason Rembert. "I'd definitely made a conscious decision in my solo career to take fashion more seriously, starting with attending two shows in 2015 with Louis Vuitton and Valentino," he writes.

Considering that Malik has gone on to star in Vogue editorials and collaborate with high-fashion brands like Giuseppe Zanotti and Versus Versace, that decision seems to be sticking. Of course, Malik's biggest style moment came when he made his red-carpet debut with supermodel girlfriend Gigi Hadid at the 2016 Met Gala.  "It was a great moment for me when Donatella Versace invited me to attend the Met Gala with Versace," he says. "The Met Gala is a big event in the fashion calendar, as it's hosted by Anna Wintour (the editor-in-chief of Vogue), so I was really grateful to be invited."

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Malik adds that the theme of the Met Gala — Manus x Machina — gave him the chance to design an outfit around digital animation, which he calls one of his biggest interests. The final result? A Versace outfit inspired by Mortal Kombat. "We arrived in New York the night before the gala, where I was presented with the outfit and fell in love with it immediately," he writes. "It was a bit of a risk as it was so out there compared to what I'd worn before, but I decided I didn't care and the fact that it raised a few eyebrows was all part of the fun for me."

Fans hoping to get deep dirt on his former band members or on superstar ex-fiancée Perrie Edwards are going to be disappointed — there's none of that here. Instead is something even better: a gorgeous, glossy book filled with photos, both candid and staged, of Malik alongside anecdotes about his debut album and personal life sprinkled in. It feels much more like one big fashion editorial than it does a juicy tell-all. Zayn is the book you'll want to leave out on your coffee table.

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