Following Malik's departure from 1D, Naughty Boy opened up to Heat magazine about his friendship with the singer.
"I've been his friend. He needs one. Just because we were seen at my studio – you [don't] necessarily just make music," he shared in an interview earlier this month. "People seem to forget that he's under so much stress. Which is why he left the tour. There's a lot going on. People get caught up – what he has done is to be normal. Sometimes being normal is to try and sort things out with your fiancee or hang around with a friend. That is normal."
Simon Cowell on Zayn's Exit: 'I Knew This Was Coming'
By the way, here's fun fact for you. Malik's fiancee, Perrie Edwards, also rocks a nose piercing. While Malik has opted for a relatively low-profile stud, the Little Mix singer wears a hoop. She had in on display while vacationing with Malik earlier this month.