The 24-year-old singer has opened up about his relationship with model Gigi Hadid, his new skills in the kitchen, and living life incognito.
As one half of a celebrity couple, with a solo album that debuted at number one in both the UK and US charts last year, and has amassed a whopping one billion downloads on Spotify, following several years as a member of the internationally renowned boyband One Direction, Zayn Malik, can’t exactly pop to the shops for a pint of milk without, at the very least, a head turn from a passerby.
‘It’s a really weird world,’ he tells the Evening Standard , discussing his view of fame. ‘I don’t think there’s anywhere I could be anonymous now.’
Opening up about the difficulties of living life in the spotlight, the Bradford-born star reveals when he stays with his longterm girlfriend, model Gigi Hadid, in New York, it’s difficult to indulge in the occasional moment of anonymity.
He says: “In New York [where Hadid is based], you can sometimes get out in the early hours of the morning for a walk.
“But there’s no underground parking here, no escape routes. So they’re going to get pictures, they’re going to find you. In LA [his own usual US base], it’s more catered to these things — you’ve got back entrances and that,” he adds.
However, fortunately for the star—who, over the years, has been candid about his struggles with anxiety and finding his own identity post One Direction—he has a supportive girlfriend by his side.
Revealing the 22-year-old model, who has her own collection with Tommy Hilfiger, “assisted” him in his latest capsule collection for Versace’s diffusion line Versus—modeled by Gigi’s sister, Bella, in the campaign—the “Still Got Time” crooner said that despite their fame, him and Gigi are very much a “normal couple.”
When asked whether having a partner who is used to fame (Hadid’s mother, Yolanda, stars in the reality show The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills ) helps, Malik admits: ‘She gets it, she’s very understanding.
“But I can understand how it can look, that you’ve got these two people in a ‘power couple.”
“That’s not something I want to be a part of. I’m with her because I like her and I hope she’s with me because she likes me. When we come home, we don’t really talk about that sh*t. We just spend time together as a normal couple, cook food, watch TV, have a laugh,” he adds.
The pair’s ability to enjoy each other’s company away from the shutter bugs is something Gigi herself has mentioned previously, admitting her British boyfriend has sparked off her new-found addiction for Heinz Baked Beans, tea and butter chicken.
Malik concludes: “I’ve got into a thing of cooking pies recently. I cook a mean chicken and sweetcorn pie, with Alfredo sauce. I make my own pastry, roll it out and everything.”
Zayn Malik: singer, designer, pie chef.