Horan performs with One Direction, at Hordern Pavilion, Moore Park, Sydney, Australia, 13 April 2012
Niall James Horan, born (1993-09-13) 13 September 1993 (age 20), is from Mullingar, County Westmeath, Ireland. Born to Bobby and Maura (née Gallagher) Horan, he has an older brother named Greg. Their parents divorced when he was five. He and his brother lived between each of their homes for a few years before eventually deciding to live with their father in Mullingar. Horan was a pupil at Coláiste Mhuire, a boys' Christian Brothers school. He was in his school's choir, performing seasonally around Christmas.
Zain Javadd "Zayn" Malik, born (1993-01-12) 12 January 1993 (age 21), is from Bradford, West Yorkshire, England. His father, Yaser Malik, is British Pakistani, and his mother, Tricia (née Brannan) Malik, is of Irish and English descent. He has one older sister, Doniya, and two younger sisters, Waliyha and Safaa.
He grew up in East Bowling, was a pupil at Lower Fields Primary School, and went to Tong High School, a state comprehensive school. Malik did not fit in at his first two schools due to his mixed heritage. Malik has stated that he started taking pride in his appearance after moving schools at the age of twelve. Upon auditioning for The X Factor, he stated: "I was looking for an experience". He cites urban music as his main musical influence, growing up, he was into R&B and rap. He as well as other members of One Direction further notes artists such as Bruno Mars, as a "dream collaborator." Malik is a heavy cigarette smoker; in late 2011, he expressed his desire to quit. Malik is Muslim, and once affirmed that by tweeting "La ila ha ill lalla ho muhammed door rasoolalah" (declaration of faith, meaning: "There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is the prophet of Allah"). In June 2012, Malik's approach to Islam was criticised by blogger Debbie Schlussel, who accused him of advertising Islam to young fans; at the same time, he was criticised, on Twitter, by conservative Muslims, for not taking Islamic doctrine seriously enough.
As of 18 August 2013, Malik is engaged to singer Perrie Edwards, of the band Little Mix.
Payne performing with One Direction, Molson Canadian Amphitheatre, Toronto, Ontario, 29 May 2012
Liam James Payne, born (1993-08-29) 29 August 1993 (age 20), is from Wolverhampton, West Midlands, England. Born three weeks early, to Karen and Geoff Payne, he has two older sisters, Ruth and Nicola. Until the age of four, Payne had regular tests done in hospital as doctors noticed one of his kidneys was scarred and dysfunctional. To help cope with the pain, he had 32 injections in his arm in the morning and evening as a child. As a student, Payne was heavily involved in sports. Payne was bullied in secondary school and took up boxing lessons at the age of 12. He was a music technology student at City of Wolverhampton College.
Payne had once performed in front of a crowd of 26,000 at a Wolverhampton Wanderers football match. Payne first auditioned in 2008 to The X Factor's fifth series when he was fourteen. He made it to the judges' houses, but Cowell thought he was not ready for the competition and asked him to come back in two years. Payne cites Justin Timberlake as one of his biggest influences. He also said that he draws inspiration from Take That member Gary Barlow when performing.
Styles with One Direction in Glasgow, 27 February 2013
Harry Edward Styles, born (1994-02-01) 1 February 1994 (age 20), is from the village of Holmes Chapel, Cheshire, England. He is a former pupil at Holmes Chapel Comprehensive School, a state comprehensive school. Born to Anne Cox (née Selley) and Des Styles, he has one sibling, his elder sister Gemma. He was seven when their parents divorced; his mother subsequently remarried. Following the divorce, Styles, his older sister and mother moved further out into the Cheshire countryside. At the age of 12 he moved back to Holmes Chapel. Prior to participating in The X Factor, the then 16-year-old Styles had a part-time job at the W. Mandeville Bakery in Holmes Chapel.
Styles was the lead singer for the band White Eskimo with band members lead guitarist Haydn Morris, bass guitarist Nick Clough and drummer Will Sweeny. They had once entered a Battle of the Bands competition, which they won. As a child, Styles loved singing, noting Elvis Presley as one of his influences. He also cites Presley for his musical beginnings. Styles cites contemporaries such as Foster the People, Coldplay and Kings of Leon among his influences. Styles stated that "The X Factor gave him 'a lot more' [confidence]" as a performer. He often looks to Coldplay front man Chris Martin for inspiration when performing on stage. Styles has stated that The Beatles had an influence on him growing up, as his father often played their music.
Louis William Tomlinson, born Louis Troy Austin on (1991-12-24) 24 December 1991 (age 22), is from Doncaster, South Yorkshire, England. Born to Johannah (née Poulston) and Troy Austin, his parents split up when he was young and he took the surname of his stepfather, Mark Tomlinson. He has five younger half-sisters, two of whom had roles as babies in the television series Fat Friends, on which he appeared as an extra. After Fat Friends, he attended an acting school in Barnsley. He had small parts in an ITV1 drama film If I Had You and BBC's Waterloo Road. He was a sixth form student at Hall Cross School, a state comprehensive school, and a former pupil of the Hayfield School. He failed his first year of A levels at the Hayfield School and ended up going back to Hall Cross and starting A levels again. He had a number of jobs, including at a Vue cinema and at Doncaster Rovers football stadium as a waiter in the hospitality suites.
As a student at Hall Cross, Tomlinson appeared in several musical productions. Playing Danny Zuko in the Hall Cross musical production of Grease motivated him to audition for The X Factor. Tomlinson cites Robbie Williams as his biggest influence and idol. In an interview with Now magazine, he said: "I've always loved Robbie. He's just so cheeky, he can get away with anything. His performances are unbelievable." He also admires the recording artist Ed Sheeran, describing him as "phenomenal".
Tomlinson is currently in a long term relationship with Manchester Student, Eleanor Calder.