Xiumin debuted with EXO in April 2012 with the EP Mama. Their breakthrough came in 2013 with the release of their debut studio album XOXO, which spawned the hit single Growl. EXO’s single Monster from their third studio album Ex’Act became the group’s first number one on the Billboard World Digital Songs chart. The group topped Forbes Korea’s Power Celebrity List for two consecutive years in 2015 and 2016. Also in 2016, Xiumin debuted as a member of EXO’s first sub-unit EXO-CBX along with Chen and Baekhyun. In September 2022, he released his first solo EP called Brand New.

Xiumin began acting in 2015 through the musical School OZ and the web series EXO Next Door and Falling for Challenge. The latter became the most watched web drama in South Korea in 2015 with over 21 million views. In 2016, he made his film debut in Seondal: The Man Who Sells the River.

Xiumin enlisted for his mandatory military service in May 2019 and was discharged in December 2020.