Following Camila Cabello's departure from the all-girl group in December 2016, remaining members Lauren Jauregui, Normani Kordei, Dinah Jane and Ally Brooke announced on Monday that they were taking an indefinite hiatus to pursue solo endeavors. "These girls have been working virtually every day, non-stop for six years. They needed time on their own," a source close to 5H told ET. "They spent their entire teen lives together, touring, recording and promoting their projects. So, they wanted to explore themselves as individuals, as humans."
From their start on The X Factor to their latest solo projects, ET's breaking down the girls' journey and all the hints leading up to their decision to take a break.
2012: Fifth Harmony is formed
After auditioning as solo artists on The X Factor singing competition, Camila, Lauren, Normani, Dinah and Ally were put together by show creator Simon Cowell. As a group, they finished third, and released their first EP, Better Together, in 2013.
Their first official album, Reflection, was released in January 2015, followed up with a second album, 7/27, in May 2016.
March 2016: Early rumors of a breakup begin
After Camila branched out to collaborate with Shawn Mendes on the 2015 summer smash, "I Know What You Did Last Summer," fans started to speculate that a split was coming.
"Regardless of everything that's been going on, that's always been the focus, Fifth Harmony," she said at the time. "Fifth Harmony is definitely our first love... it's always been the foundation of everything."
Lauren chimed in, saying, "I mean, we were just in the studio and we are coming out with an album, you know. And that's what happened with that, honestly, at the end of the day... we got a song on the radio right now."
December 2016: Camila departs the group to kickstart her solo career
The band and Camila released conflicting statements on social media explaining what really led to the singer's unexpected departure. "The last thing we want to do is engage in a battle of we said, she said, but we’ve let our story play out in press and on social media for too long," 5H explained in an additional statement. "So, to our Harmonizers, who we care so deeply about, we want you to hear everything from us, unedited, not manipulated, just us, to you."
October 2017: Normani assures fans they're not breaking up
While speaking with ET last October, Normani said she had no plans to part ways with 5H. At the time, fans had been freaking out over the fact that she had just signed with a new manager, leading many to believe she was pulling a Camila and would be the next to leave the group.
"It's funny because so many people were like, '5H is over! Oh my gosh! She's leaving the group.' And I'm just sitting in my bed laughing because so many things can be misconstrued and misread and just taken out of context," Normani admitted. "I'm like, no, I'm not leaving my group. I would never. We're on such a high right now. We're at our peak. It would be dumb at this point, and it's not what I want to do with my heart and soul. That wasn't even a thought."
"All it is, is that I got my own manager to kind of help guide me with whatever it is that I want to do aside from the group," she continued. "That's all it is ... It's really special to have a group of women that are confident enough in ourselves that we can be confident in the next person. It's just cool that we can all support each other, not because we're forced to or we have to, but because we genuinely love each other and we're happy. We know that we came into the group as individuals, so we allow each other that individual freedom, but still remembering that the group is [important]."
That same month, Dinah also sparked split rumors when she teamed up with RedOne, Daddy Yankee and French Montana for "Boom Boom."
March 2017: Normani joins season 24 of Dancing With the Stars
It's the first time 5H fans really saw the spotlight on another member outside of the group, and boy did she shine! Partnered with Val Chmerkovskiy, Normani was a frontrunner from the beginning, ultimately placing third in the competition.
May 2017: Lauren teams up with Halsey for "Strangers"
After being featured on Marian Hill's 2016 track, "Back to Me," Lauren continued to collaborate with other artists on her own, outside of Fifth Harmony. "Strangers" was featured on Halsey's Hopeless Fountain Kingdom album. Since then, Lauren's also teamed up with Steve Aoki for "All Night," and with her boyfriend, Ty Dolla Sign, for "In Your Phone."
June 2017: The group releases first music video without Camila
Directed by James Larese, the ladies looked fierce and fabulous in the music video for "Down." But we have to admit... it was a little weird not seeing Camila in it.
That same month, Ally branched out from the group by teaming up with Lost Kings and ASAP Ferg for "Look at Us Now."
August 2017: Fifth Harmony releases first album as a foursome
Lauren, Dinah, Ally and Normani released their self-titled third album on Aug. 25, marking their first without Camila.
A few weeks later, the girls performed at the MTV Video Music Awards, where they seemingly threw shade at Camila by having a fifth person fall from the stage. However, in an interview with Good Morning America, Ally said the move was not directed towards Camila, but was instead a message intended for the media.
"We get asked all the time if we’re getting a fifth member," Ally explained. “And we wanted to show the world in an artistic way that, 'Hey, the four of us are Fifth Harmony. We are stronger and better than we’ve ever been.' Honestly, it was such a monumental moment for us. We were at the VMAs, we had rain, we had the splits, we had a mic drop."
December 2017: Lauren tells ET that all the girls are "exploring" their own projects at the moment
When ET spoke with Lauren at KIIS-FM’s iHeartRadio Jingle Ball at the Forum in Inglewood, California, she revealed that she and her fellow band members were all "branching out" from the group in various ways.
"We're at such an amazing place harmoniously with each other with communication and support for one another," she said at the time. "We’ve grown so much over the past year even, and I love genuinely being able to explore myself and know that my girls are there for me."
"It’s really cool, because we’re branching out to creatively discover ourselves, because we never really got an opportunity to do that since we started this when we were...I was, like, 16 when I started," she continued. "It's cool to be able to give each other that space to really explore ourselves individually and grow."
January 2018: Camila gets candid on Fifth Harmony's "healthy competition" and why she left the group
"With the experiences we had being in the studio, I became super curious about songwriting and it was around the time -- I think it was the second year that I was with the group -- that I wanted to start songwriting for other people," she explained in an interview with Net-a-Porter's The EDIT. "But once I was old enough to experience my first kiss, or the first time that I went out on a date, I began writing songs about it, and I didn't want to give them away to anybody else because they were about me. I was finding my voice, and with it, I found the passion that gives you a deeper meaning."
She continued on, explaining that she would never be where she is today had she not been paired up with the girls on The X Factor. "Man, it shaped me entirely," Camila said. "I would not be the person that I am right now; I would not have been ready for this. I feel like being part of a group teaches you so many things about yourself, ironically."
"It also brings out this healthy competition, you know what I mean?" she added. "You never want to be the one that sucks."
February 2018: Normani teams up with Khalid for a new song featured on the Love, Simon soundtrack
After making a cameo appearance in Khalid's music video for "Young Dumb & Broke," the two teamed up for "Love Lies." Since its release, the track (which debuted at 43 on the Billboard Hot 100) has become the highest first-week position for a debut single by a girl group member.
March 2018: Fifth Harmony announce they're taking an indefinite hiatus
"After six years going hard, non-stop, we also realized that in order to stay authentic to ourselves and to you, we do need to take some time for now to go on hiatus from Fifth Harmony in order to pursue solo endeavors," the statement read. "We are all very excited and grateful to be able to take this time to learn and grow creatively and really find our footing as individuals. In doing this we are allowing ourselves to gain new experiences, strengths and perspectives that we can bring back to our Fifth Harmony family."