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Zayn Malik’s guide to staying relevant: Release headline-worthy content on the heels of 1D news

So Zayn kind of spoiled the 1D “finished the album, just had a phenomenal show in Kansas City, leaked a little bit of the album, oh and by the way Louis is holding a ball for sick children” headlines by announcing his solo career.

This isn’t the first time Zayn unveiled big news immediately after One Direction does something of note. Once or twice is a coincidence. More than that? Well, this might be a strategy. This is something Zayn has been doing since the start of OTRA picking up again.

Zayn has also been tweeting more this month than he ever has. That’s no accident.

I’m putting a timeline together of times Zayn headlines have collided with big 1D news within 24 hours of eachother. If you have anything to add, send it to me and I’ll put it in.

June 5/6 - OTRA kicks off again and 1D perform at the Capital Summertime Ball

June 6 - Perrie posts a photo of Zayn debuting his green hair. 

June 9 - TCA Award nominations are released and Zayn and 1D are up against each other in one of the categories. 1D gets some positive headlines for offering to meet with teenagers who were injured in a theme park accident. 

June 10 - Zayn tweets for the first time since his Naughty Boy/Louis feud to inform the world that his hair is now white and it was purple the day before. 

June 13/14 - 1D performs No Control for the first time but most videos of it don’t come out until the 14th.

June 15 - Zayn’s cover of No Type leaks, and Mic Righteous makes sure everyone knows Zayn wants his music out now. 

June 16 - Liam does a charity sketch with Andy Murray, Jack Whitehall and Clare Balding for charity

June 16 - Zayn tweets a selfie for the first time since leaving the band. His hair is bleached.

June 24 - 1D announce new perfume, release video for perfume

June 24 - Zayn shows up front row at fashion week. It’s his first public appearance aside from the Asian Awards since leaving the band. It is also the first time Zayn has ever gone to a fashion show. 

July 5 - Liam releases the “washing my hair” video which people go crazy over

July 5 - Papers report Zayn is trying to trademark “Zaughty”

July 7 - One Direction announce #Action1D campaign

July 7 - Zayn tweets a selfie for the first time in a month, adds a tweet about the weather, suggests a song for fans to listen to and RTs someone’s video.  

July 9 - American leg of OTRA tour starts up 

July 9 - Papers publish story on Zayn’s new house, release details about the home that they got from “insider”

July 20 - Liam and Niall release video for Action 1D, Niall is photographed with Justin Bieber and Cody Simpson in controversial photo, Louis baby-gate continues

July 21 - Zayn is papped at a club for the first time since leaving the band.