One Direction: The essential tracks to mark 10 years since band's X Factor formation

Rex Features
Rex Features

Ten years ago, The X Factor introduced the world to One Direction.

All five members – Harry Styles, Liam Payne, Louis Tomlinson, Niall Horan and Zayn Malik – auditioned separately before Simon Cowell and guest judge Nicole Scherzinger asked them to compete as a collective.

Their competitors that year included Cher Lloyd, Rebecca Ferguson and eventual winner Matt Cardle.

The band found global success despite finishing just third in the ITV competition, with the rise of social media assisting in securing their feverish fan base.

After the release of debut single “What Makes You Beautiful”, One Direction’s path to chart victory was officially set in motion – just three years later, they were named the world’s biggest-selling music act.

From 2010 until their extended hiatus, which was announced in 2018, the group released five studio albums, which featured hit songs, including “Best Song Ever”, “Story of My Life” and “Kiss You”.

To mark their 10th anniversary, we’ve compiled a playlist of the band’s 25 most essential songs.

The band are currently in the process of making a 10-year anniversary video to mark the milestone.

According to the band’s PR firm, Simon Jones, the video will “document highlights of the band’s career, from forming on The X Factor to releasing their single ‘History,’ including clips from music videos, performances and candid behind-the-scenes video content.

The video will also explore the “special relationship” the band have with their fans.