US Vogue has apologised for "missing the mark" by saying Zayn Malik and his girlfriend Gigi Hadid were "embracing gender fluidity".
In an recent interview, the former One Direction band singer and the US model talked about borrowing each other's clothes. They were photographed in colourful, fairly androgynous clothes.
But readers mocked the magazine for its definition of the phrase, pointing out that what you wear does not make you "gender fluid".
Later many on social media pointed out that the term refers to people with a particular transgender identity, who do not conform to societal expectations of male or female or identify as either.
"Unlike how this new Vogue cover shoot presents it, the lived experience of being gender-nonconforming is rarely that fun and glamorous."
Vogue describes a conversation between the pair, with Hadid telling Malik: "I shop in your closet all the time, don't I?".
The 24-year-old singer then replies that he borrowed an Anna Sui T-shirt from her, adding: "I like that shirt. And if it's tight on me, so what? It doesn't matter if it was made for a girl."
Hadid, 22, agrees, saying: "Totally. It's not about gender. It's about, like, shapes. And what feels good on you that day.
"And anyway, it's fun to experiment."