15 Former (And Current) Boy Band Members Who've Opened Up About Some Of The Wild And Strict Rules They Had To Endure

This post contains mentions of abuse, eating disorders, and more.

1.First, after leaving One Direction in 2015, Zayn Malik opened up about some of the rules that came with being in the band. For instance, he said he "wasn't allowed" to keep his beard while in the band. He said the reasoning was because his facial hair made him look older than the other members, and it went against the "young teen boy" image of the band.

Zayn also said he wasn't allowed to dye his hair while in the band, which is one of the reasons he often dyes it now. Speaking about being told he couldn't keep his beard, Zayn added,

2.Harry Styles said that while he was in One Direction, he was constantly "terrified" that he would say the wrong thing in interviews that would warrant him being kicked out of the band. He explained they signed contracts with "cleanliness clauses," which would "dictate that they would be null and void if he did anything supposedly unsavory."

When he signed his first solo contract, he said he almost burst into tears upon reading the contract and finding out that his ability to make music would

When he signed his first solo contract, he said he almost burst into tears upon reading the contract and finding out that his ability to make music would "not be affected by personal transgressions." Harry added, "I felt free."

Mike Marsland / WireImage / Getty Images, Dave J Hogan / Dave J. Hogan/Getty Images

3.Also, Harry revealed that he and his One Direction bandmates were often encouraged to give a lot of themselves away, aka not really have a private life. Harry said it was all in an attempt to "get people to engage with you, to like you." Looking back, he finds it odd that all of his baby photos are all over the internet and those photos weren't kept private.

<div><p>"In lockdown, I started processing a lot of stuff that happened when I was in the band," Harry added.</p></div><span> Fred Duval / FilmMagic / Getty Images</span>

"In lockdown, I started processing a lot of stuff that happened when I was in the band," Harry added.

Fred Duval / FilmMagic / Getty Images

4.Niall Horan explained that one of the things that led to One Direction's extended hiatus was the grueling schedule the boys had to maintain. He said, "When we called the hiatus, we just felt like it was the right time. It was a long time to keep going at that intensity and that pressure, touring that much and bringing out albums at that pace."

To put into perspective how overworked One Direction was when they announced their hiatus, they had played 329 live shows in less than four years with four world-spanning tours, filmed 15 music videos, and released five studio albums.

5.At the height of NSYNC's fame, Chris Kirkpatrick was very transparent when it came to the exhausting schedule the band had to maintain. He explained that unlike a typical 9–5 job, Chris and his fellow bandmates were always NSYNC, so even when they left a recording studio or event, they still had to sign autographs and be working to maintain their image. He also added they would often do interviews all day, some starting as early as 5 a.m.

<div><p>"When you work a 9-to-5, you go to work at 9, you get home at 5. You're done. You can go out, party, and not even think about work. We can do the same thing, we work all day long, but when we leave, we're still NSYNC. We're still who we are. We can't change that," Chris said.</p></div><span> Getty Images, Astrida Valigorsky / Getty Images</span>

6.Joe Jonas said he and his brothers Nick and Kevin were "expected to be perfect" while working for Disney. In particular, they also had to go through media training, which he hated. He remembered being taught how to "change the subject whenever you were asked an uncomfortable question."

He continued, saying,

7.Also, Joe said that Disney was very particular when it came to lyrics in songs the Jonas Brothers wrote. He said, "If a lyric was slightly sexual, someone at the record company would tell us we had to change it. It could be the most innocent reference."

Joe continued, saying that the lyrics could be as innocent as

Joe continued, saying that the lyrics could be as innocent as "I'm alone in a room with you," and the fact that it implied sex, it would have to be changed. He added, "It felt like we couldn’t be creative, so we stopped listening to them and just started handing shit in."

Jeffrey Mayer / WireImage / Getty Images

8.AJ McLean said that the Backstreet Boys were often told to take advice from the record label when it came to lyrics in their songs, especially during the early days of the band. In particular, AJ remembered the label wanted to change the chorus of "I Want It That Way," but the boys fought back and ended up keeping the now-iconic "Tell me why" line.

Speaking about having to record the label's version of

9.At the beginning of their careers, the Jackson 5 were reportedly not "allowed outside to play with other children" and would rehearse for "five hours a day after school" at the insistence of their manager (and father), Joe Jackson. Later in life, Jermaine Jackson reflected on Joe's tough rules, saying, "None of us can remember him holding us or cuddling us or telling us 'I love you.'"

Joe would reportedly beat his children as well if they were not perfect during rehearsals. One report alleged if they missed a dance step, they were told to go into the backyard, break off a branch from a tree, and it would be used to hit them.

10.Why Don't We accused their production company and manager of "mental, emotional, and financial abuse" in 2021, which led to the band going on hiatus. Speaking about the abuse they suffered at the hands of their manager, the band said, "He would not only live with us during the day but controlled us 24/7, setting an alarm that would go off if any door or window was opened. We were not given the security code to the alarm, essentially making us hostages in our own home."

They also alleged that due to the schedules they were required to maintain,

11.Jungkook has a ton of tattoos on both arms and hands, but he's reportedly required to hide them while performing on TV with BTS due to South Korea's strict tattoo rules, which reportedly carry over to broadcast. You'll often see Jungkook performing in long-sleeved shirts, and when he has shown off his tattoo sleeves, fans have gone wild.

He's talked about how much he loves his tattoos and how much they mean to him. In an interview in 2023, he said he has over 14 tattoos, each with their own unique meanings. He's particularly fond of one of his birth flower, and he has

12.Ricky Martin, who started his career with Menudo, wrote in his autobiography how it was his "job to move [his hips]," saying, "because then [fans would] scream, and that meant I was successful, like the rest of the guys. Was I ready for that? I don't know. But that's what I was supposed to go through, according to my karma."

Ricky's also spoken about coming out later in life and how his time in the band forced him to continue the illusion that he was attracted to women. He wrote,

13.Johnny Lozada, who joined Menudo in 1980, revealed in the documentary Menudo: Forever Young that José Luis "Josélo" Vega, the band's choreographer and creative director, was "in charge" of their stage image. This meant he dictated their hairstyles, clothes, shoes, and more. Johnny recalled having to "get two perms" because his hair wasn't naturally curly, but that's the look he was told he needed to have.

Alongside Josélo, Menudo's manager Edgardo Díaz reportedly wanted the boys to wear

14.In 2012, members of the Wanted and One Direction got into a Twitter feud, which allegedly led to the Wanted's management telling the members of the band that they weren't allowed to be at a venue "at the same time" as the 1D boys. Around this time, both bands performed at Madison Square Garden at the same event, which reportedly resulted in both bands being surrounded by a lot of security.

Looking back on the whole ordeal, the Wanted's Nathan Sykes said he felt like

15.And finally, after splitting with their US label and management in 2021, 5 Seconds of Summer opened up about how their fifth studio album was all about now being able to explore their creative freedom. The album, titled 5SOS5, marked the first time the band self-produced an album, which marked a "vast change of pace for the band," according to Rolling Stone.

When sharing news of the fifth album in 2022, the band tweeted,

The National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline is 1-888-950-6264 (NAMI) and provides information and referral services; is an association of mental health professionals from more than 25 countries who support efforts to reduce harm in therapy.

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