-Before I start, let me say that I own none of this, all rights to Seventeen Magazine. Interview by Ashley Mateo.-

Zayn, 19, says he lives by the motto ''Don't worry about other people; do what makes you happy.'' But he remains super-loyal to the other guys in the band, his girlfriend and, of course, his values.

17: You've got a rep as the ''bad boy'' in the band. How does that make you feel?

Zayn Malik: I like to use the term misunderstood. But I am a bit of a bad boy. I have tattoos and I mess around. That's part of my image, so it's cool.

17: You recently went public with your girlfriend. Was that a big deal to you?

ZM: No, my attitude toward that is ''Who cares?'' If it makes you happy, why does it matter what anybody else thinks? She was a friend for a couple of months-we exchanged numbers at a shoot for The X Factor UK-and then we decided to start dating. That was it.

17: It took you two years to try out for X Factor. Why wait?

ZM: I was nervous! I applied when I was 15 and 16, but then I never signed up for the auditions. I wasn't going to go audition again, but my mom literally dragged me there when I was 17. I was a very introverted, quiet, reserved, person. I loved singing, but I never had any major experience doing it and I didn't know what to expect. Not knowing what could happen was very daunting for me.

17: Do you still get nervous when you perform?

ZM: Yeah! But I've got four of my closest friends onstage with me for support. I tell myself now how many people would kill to be in my position. So to do it halfheartedly would be a little stupid and to let my lack of confidence hold me back would be silly.

Tat Talk: Zayn's ink reminders of what's most important to him!

Fingers Crossed - ''It's for the future-a hope that everything goes well.''

Arabic Quote- ''It says, 'be true to who you are.' I don't believe in changing for other people.''

Microphone- ''I think this is kind of self explanatory.''

Zap- ''I recently got this one, which just symbolizes my love for comic books. It filled a nice spot, and I've always loved comic book art.''

-Interview by Ashley Mateo-