Formed similarly to One Direction, Little Mix is comprised of four singers who originally auditioned for the show as solo artists, but were eventually put together as a group prior to the live shows. Originally known as Rhythmix, the group was forced to change their name when a charity organization of the same name threatened to sue.
They have achieved several firsts: First girl group in X Factor top 5, first group to win X Factor, first UK no 1 by any girl group since Girls Aloud (Saturdays got their first no 1 later), first X Factor winner to release an original single in summer, first UK girl group since All Saints to earn a double platinum single in Australia (and first since the Sugababes in 2005 to be in the top 3!) and first UK girl group EVER to go straight into the top 5 in the US with its debut album. They have the most VEVO-certified music videos ever for a British female artist as well as the most for any girl group, with 11 videos that have over 100 million views as of August 2017.
In 2013, they released the album Salute which followed its predecessor in being a transatlantic top tenner (it was even seen atop the US iTunes chart for a few hours, although it charted 6th — it would have been 4th if compilations were removed from the US albums chart as with the UK — and narrowly missed the top 5). This made Little Mix the first X Factor WINNER to have TWO US top 10 albums, the second act from the show after 1D, and the second UK girl group after the Spice Girls (many greats such as Bananarama, All Saints, Atomic Kitten, Sugababes, Girls Aloud and The Saturdays have only managed a top 20 album in the US at best if at all).
In 2015, after being forced to can US gigs and an entire album that they didn't think was good enough, LM came back in spectacular fashion with "Black Magic" spending 3 weeks at number 1 in the UK, and performing at the Teen Choice Awards and with Taylor Swift in spite of the shock split of Perrie with Zayn, formerly from 1D, at the same time. The girls released their most successful album yet in Get Weird, LM's most successful album in UK, Australia, and many European countries (in USA, it was narrowly denied a top 10 place, but still did well enough to make LM the most successful British girl group in USA EVER in terms of chart placings — as well as THE first girl group ever to have their first 3 albums start in the top 15!). In UK, it even outsold 1D's final album before their hiatus! It also led to LM's first world tour, which had gigs in UK extended, selling over 300,000 tickets, and the first worldwide gigs, including a couple in Europe upgraded because of the demand.
Glory Days became the band's first UK no. 1 album, and was the fastest selling album in the country since David Bowie's death. It was also in the top 10 in over SIXTY worldwide iTunes charts. Whilst it didn't do as well in USA as the preceding 3 albums, Little Mix became the second girl group after TLC to have all their first 4 albums in the US top 30. They did, however, join the US leg of Ariana Grande's tour, before headlining an arena tour in the same areas where the preceding album's tour took place. In Europe, bigger venues were used than the previous tour, and there were extra gigs for UK and Australia, as well as a "summer tour" in British stadiums.
They released a 5th album, taking advantage of the practice hashtags when an act works on an unnamed album to call it LM 5. Opened with a dream collaboration with Nicki Minaj, and with some powerful and frank songs, it was acclaimed, but the band were removed from Syco days before its release and it didn't fare as well in charts, and had only one follow up. However, Leigh-Anne and Jade climbed Kilimanjaro for charity, they released "Bounce Back" penned by ex-5H member Normani, and had their largest tour of UK, mainland Europe, and Australia yet, but just 4 days before it began, Jesy released a powerful confessional documentary, supported by her bandmates, about the previously undocumented effects the abuse she received for her body shape during X Factor and its immediate aftermath had on her mental and physical health and confidence.
Following this, they released a Christmas song, written solely by Leigh Anne, though that made little impact. However, they had a top 10 single for the 10th consecutive year when they released Break Up Song in spite of having to put their new BBC talent show The Search on hold due to the Coronavirus debacle, and having to make a part-animated video for their new song as a result.
Little Mix is made up of:
- Perrie Edwards (born July 10, 1993) from South Shields, Tyne and Wear.
- Jesy Nelson (born June 14, 1991) from Romford, London.
- Leigh-Anne Pinnock (born October 4, 1991) from High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.
- Jade Thirwall (born December 26, 1992) from South Shields, Tyne and Wear.
- DNA (2012)
- Salute (2013)
- Get Weird (2015)
- Glory Days (2016)
- LM5 (2018)
Little Mix provides examples of:
- Ambiguously Brown: Jade and Jesy. Jade is Egyptian and Yemeni on her mother's side, while Jesy is speculated to be part Anglo-Indian, but has not said anything about her heritage.
- A Wild Rapper Appears!:
- Most notably, Missy Elliott in "How Ya Doin'?", Sean Paul in "Hair", Machine Gun Kelly in "No More Sad Songs" and Stormzy in "Power"
- 7 years to the day after covering Super Bass on the first round of X Factor, Little Mix achieved a career-long dream by having Nicki Minaj contribute to this in "Woman like Me", the first song from their 5th album.
- Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: During their time on the show, Perrie, Jade and Leigh-Anne were the original configuration of this. Post-show, Leigh-Anne went back to her natural black while Jesy dyed her hair red, but the latter has since reverted back to her natural brunette.
- Break Up Song:
- "Pretend It's OK", "Turn Your Face", "Going Nowhere", "Case Closed", "Love Me or Leave Me".
- "Hair" was obviously written before the surprise and acrimonious Zerrie split, but its release later that month, and its lyrics, lead to a lot of interpretation about it.
- "Shout Out to My Ex" is a song to their ex-boyfriends.
- Belly Dancer The Reggeaton Lento remix music video (a remix of the song by Latino boyband CNCO, in duet with the girls, creating a girlgroup boyband duet, in which all the members across both groups sing separately) sees the members use belly dancing and flamenco folk costumes and dances, as well as Jesy doing a bizzare dance with her breasts.
- Call-Back: The girls playing with their clothes in "Hair" is a call back to them doing the same thing in the "How Ya Doin'?" video
- Cover Version:
- Their winners' single was a cover of Damien Rice 's "Cannonball", reworked as a R&B-styled ballad.
- On BBC Radio 1, they did a fantastic cover of Mumford and Sons song I Will wait https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RTytQWfcO4M . In this version, they used their voices absolutely brilliantly. The cover even uses a conductor.
- Acapella covers of Beyonce's End Of Time, and Fun.'s we are young. During the Cannonball audit, Jade sings a cappella, but synth beats are introduced after her solo finishes.
- For Sports Relief 2014 they did a very catchy cover of Cameo's "Word Up".
- Curse Cut Short: "And if they give you sh " from "Wings". The Glee cast cover, however, did assume the girls swore, and replaced the "Shhh " sound with hell. American Idol assumed the same as well, and replaced "sh" with "lip".
- Childhood Friends: Jade has known 2009 winner Joe McElderry since they were kids.
- Distaff Counterpart: In the loosest sense to One Direction, in that they're a pop group created by The X Factor and because Perrie and Zayn were once engaged. Otherwise, their musical styles are vastly different and Little Mix's success is only a fraction of One Direction's. As of Zayn's departure this even makes more sense, since they both have 4 members each.
- Double Standard: The "DNA" video tells some incomprehensible story about a guy they have kidnapped. He appears tied up in Perrie's car, and the video ends with all four of them walking towards him about to do god-knows-what to him. It's pretty clear this is meant to be sexy. Now if a boy band had a music video showing a girl they kidnapped and tied up
- Female Empowerment Song: "Salute" is an empowerment song in the vein of a military anthem:Ladies all across the world, listen up we're looking for recruits
If you with me, let me see your hands
Stand up and salute
Get your killer heels, sneakers, pumps, or lace up your boots
Representing all the women (salute, salute)
- Football Fight Song: "Change Your Life" ironically enough.
- Four-Girl Ensemble: Jade is the sweet-naive one, Jesy is the Deadpan Snarker, Leigh-Anne is the glamorous one, and Perrie is the Wild Card (in every sense of the word — her teammates once called her the baby of the group, because she is the youngest.).
- Fun with Acronyms: "A.D.I.D.A.S" isn't about shoes; it stands for the repeated line "all day long I dream about shh."
- Gasshole: According to the other girls, Perrie.
- Hard-Drinking Party Girl: Leigh-Anne and Jade are known for being this.
- Intercourse with You: "DNA", "Lovedrunk", "Stereo Soldier", "A.D.I.D.A.S.", "Beep Beep", and "Motivate".
- Love Is a Drug: "Lovedrunk".
- Modesty Towel: Jesy Nelson wears nothing but a towel for her part of "The One I've Been Missing" music video.
- Ms. Fanservice: Starting with the "Glory Days" era.
- Named After Somebody Famous: Perrie was named after Steve Perry, of Journey.
- Older and Wiser: Prior to finally making it to the live shows with Little Mix, Jade had previously auditioned for the 2008 and 2010 seasons of the show, but only made it as far as the boot camp stage both times.
- Oop North: Jade and Perrie are both Geordies from the same town.
- Reality Subtext: Jesy received so much abuse about her weight early in the band's career that she attempted to take her life several times, leading the band to take a hard body-positive stance from then on.
- Retraux: "Weird People" takes influences from 1980's pop.
- Self Empowerment Anthem: "Change Your Life" and "Wings" in DNA, "Little Me" and the title track of Salute.
- This is a theme of LM5, including "Strip" and "Joan of Arc".
- Shaking the Rump: The girls sometimes incorporate twerking into their choreography during performances.
- "A.D.I.D.A.S" shout outs to Drake and his song "Coming Home".
- The music video for "Hair" references the famous floor slide scene◊ from Risky Business.
- The music video for "Black Magic" has various references to 1996 cult horror film The Craft, in particular the scene where Perrie turns her hair purple by running her hands through it, which is near-identical to a similar scene in The Craft.
- Singing Voice Dissonance: Perrie's singing voice is much deeper than her speaking voice, particularly when she sang Mumford in November 2012. She than suffered tonsillitis and missed the group's last 3 gigs of 2012, returning with a slightly altered voice in January 2013.
- Spiritual Successor:
- Because of their Talent Show roots (where they trumped Boy Bands at their own game), Little Mix are comparable to Girls Aloud's own origin story. Their songs have also garnered comparisons to the Spice Girls, TLCnote , and Destiny's Child.
- "Move", the first single off Salute, garnered comparisons to Girls Aloud, and Nicola Roberts herself co-wrote "Going Nowhere" for DNA, and "See Me Now" and "They Don't Know You" for Salute.
- In addition, the title track of Salute can be considered this for Beyoncé's "Run the World", as well as "How Ya Doin?" for Lady Gaga's "Telephone".
- Sweet Tooth: Jade loves her sweets.
- Take That!: "Shout Out to My Ex" has a not-so-subtle one towards Perrie's ex-fiancé, Zayn Malik.note
- Tomboyish Name: Perrie has one.
- Transatlantic Equivalent: To Fifth Harmony of The X Factor USA, given how they started as solo artists and were later put in a group. Other things people compare include that fact that Camilla, like with Jade, though Bowties were cool early on in her career, DJ and Jesy's hot bodies and distinct voices, and the styles, influences, and themes the separate Syco Music labelled bands sing about. Half the bands' fanbases catcall each other, but the bands themselves have been mostly openly supportive of each other (touring together and a couple of very public twitter pics of all 9 (at the time) girls across both bands posing together!), and also of other competition. LM and 5H members (current and former) also like each other's insta pics. Little Mix did later admit that both groups being on the same label was awkward, but that they were different enough from each other for this to not be a problem and hence had strong ties.
- True Companions: In "Always Be Together".
- Video Full of Film Clips: The official video for "Cannonball" is just a bunch of clips taken from their journey on The X Factor — as usual for the first singles of The X Factor winners. Change Your Life has one full of tour clips.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: The music video for "Black Magic" starts out with the girls as a group of Hollywood Nerd types trying to get a hot guy's attention at school as he chooses an Alpha Bitch type over them. Throughout the video, they discover a book of witchcraft and use it in their favor by turning the Alpha Bitch into a gasshole... After which that plot thread is completely forgotten about.
- Whole Plot Reference:
- Who's Laughing Now?:
- Jesy used to receive online bullying because she wasn't as skinny as the other girls- now they are jealous of her curves!
- Perrie, who has a scar down the entire length of her stomach, showed it little when she was abused for her relationship with Zayn, but has since done regular swimsuit pics and showing off her scar in most gigs. Many fans have often been inspire to display scars after seeing pictures of Perrie displaying hers.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: They liked to experiment with various hair colors.
- Jade did for over half a year◊.
- Perrie's hair was lavender briefly-and suited her better than first claimed!◊. However, at the start of March, the latter turned her hair pink, It than became Blond and Pink a few days later, before returning to its original blond by the end of the month. 3 weeks on from that, it was back to white, and has remained virtually the same.
- In mid-June, after the girls' record-breaking stint in the US, Jade made her hair a dark-caramel-brown like color. The colours of the girls' hair has not changed noticeably since, but their hair textures and styles often have. Perrie's hair has often changed shade since, however, as has Jesy's and Jade's.
- You Don't Look Like You: Their dolls don't look anything like them, with Jade's hair suddenly ''purple'' and Jesy's pink. Leighanne even has a afro, for some reason.
- Your Cheating Heart: Comes up in a few of their break-up songs, including "F.U.", and "Freak". It's also in the music video (but not lyrics) for "Love Me Like You". Oddly, the Jason Derulo verse on "Secret Love Song" is about this, while the rest of the song is about queer love as per Word of God.