Meet Zakiyah Everette from Big Brother Season 18! Get the scoop on her strategies from being on Big Brother and where she is now—hint: she’s making your pool days more glamorous (: Zakiyah is on quite the life adventure right now! Check out our Q&A together below to get the full scoop:
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Charlotte, North Carolina “Queen City” 🙂
What was your childhood like?
I had a pretty great childhood, I have an amazing family, went on lots of vacations, and loved people. I enjoyed playing with Barbies :), I was a Barbie kind of girl, I can honestly say I have always been a girlie girl, with a twist of country.
What were you involved in growing up?
I was a cheerleader :), an athletic trainer in my offseason, enjoyed apparel design classes, took a cake decorating classes, secretary of student government, Director of the prom committee, and a peer mentor.
What is your favorite childhood memory?
I remember going to the fair and wanting to win a “Fish”, I kept trying and trying to toss my ball in the bowl but couldn’t get it in, my grandma leaned over and showed me a technique, I gave it another shot and made it 🙂 I felt like everyone around me at that moment cheered for me, I was happy ….and I know my grandmother was even happier that she didn’t have to pay for another ball haha.
What did you do after high school?
I went straight to college… blind, confused and excited and the same time haha.
Let’s talk a little bit about Big Brother, what inspired you to go on the show?
I just ended a really bad relationship, I was pretty devastated, but I got myself together & I told myself that something good is around the corner, I felt it, I deserved it & I was ready to receive it. I applied for the show with a crappy little video I made in my bathroom and on my first take…first audition ever they chose me 🙂
What did you want to get out of the show—besides winning?
Besides winning truthfully I had zero expectations of gaining anything else, I figured I could walk away gaining great relationships with cool people but that’s about it. It was a reality show, I didn’t expect anything major. I wanted to win the competition and pay off school, get myself a decent car…. that was the goal… everything else would have been a bonus.
Did you go in with a strategy?
Two strategies, I wanted to work with someone that no one suspected me of working with, the other if strategy one wasn’t working, lay low, stay silent, and dabble in alliances… which ended up working for a little bit haha.
How did you mentally and physically prepare for the challenges?
I reviewed old competitions from previous seasons and worked out until I passed out. I had to figure out which was my strength, I figured I would have a great social game above all else and that worked to my advantage for a while in the game.
Were you ever up on the chopping block and got out of it somehow?
The first time, unfortunately, was my last time, I tried to secure my basis, but I felt the other side of the house flip, no matter what I said minds had been made, all the way up until the very day that I was evicted.
How many times (if ever) were you the Head of Household?
Z E R O hahaha dammit!
What would you say was the hardest part of the show for you?
Besides not being able to speak to loved ones, just the unknown, not knowing who is real with you, not knowing who genuinely has your best interest or back. Loyalty was a big thing to me and people crushing that really made me indifferent. I could have cared less about judgment from people, that’s life you know? I just wanted to know that I was working with & connected to real people throughout this experience.
I see that you are still very close to many of Big Brother alum. What would you say was the best friendship the show gave you?
Hands down my friendship with Paulie, despite our mishap on the show he stuck by me throughout Jury and even after the show. I can honestly say he is my closest friend and always will be. I keep in touch and stay connected with a few others because I had this crazy experience called Big Brother with them & at the end of the day it will always be love over here, no bad blood ever… we’re grown-ups 🙂
What’s your favorite memory from the show?
My birthday haha, it was LIT! they hooked me up, live performances, lap dances, bday chain haha it was so special to me, that was my absolute favorite memory.
A favorite funny moment from the show?
Me and Meech throwing shaving crème on the Pauls in their sleep haha, that was a fun dynamic us four,… good times good times.
Once the show was over, what were you most excited to get back to?
I wanted to eat sushi and crab legs OMG! Haha, the food was all I wanted. But of course, before the food was my family and friends.
What advice would you give to yourself now before going on Big Brother?
Listen to yourself, trust your gut, don’t trust so easily.
What is life like for you now since the show aired? Are there any projects that you’re currently working on?
I recently launched my swimwear line called “Sunning.” My first swimsuit collection is “The Element and the suits in the collection can be worn 8 different ways. I posted a video on my YouTube channel showing some of the ways you can wear it. I have been working on this since the show ended and I am so happy to finally show it to the world!
What is your daily workout routine?
I read my daily devotional first thing in the morning, if you watched me on the live feed you know I enjoy putting on my make up or getting dressed up, I stretch and start on which ever task that I need to whether it be for business or class. I eat big lunches haha stretch again and jump on social media in between breaks.
What is your guilty pleasure?
Geez, I have too many haha one is; Strawberry choco blizzards from Dairy Queen, it’s Vanilla ice cream, Strawberry bits, and chocolate chunks… it’s so damn good!
What is the best piece of advice you have received?
Don’t underestimate yourself.
What’s a quote you live by every day?
You only live once!
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