Along with NFL Tweens & Juniors Apparel, the singer/actress/dancer is empowering tweens/teens to support their favorite sports teams and spend quality time with their families. At the latest New York Jets vs. Pittsburgh Steelers game, I was able to join Z, along with her parents, to talk about her efforts with the brand, while hitting up my first-ever game — in a lux suite. (Like I said, that’s called doing it right.)
To find out how the Shake It Up! star linked up with the NFL, as well as more details on her new book, album, trends and more, keep on a’reading!
Can you talk about partnering up with NFL Tweens & Juniors Apparel?
Zendaya: I was definitely interested because I’m a tomboy at heart, but I’m also a girly girl, so it’s like mixing those two worlds together, and it’s also making clothes that — we all love to support our teams, but we don’t necessarily have the girly stuff that we could actually wear to school or wear it with something that we have. I think it’s a nice, feminine tween line for us.
What’s your favorite football team?
Zendaya: For me, obviously, the Jets is one of them. They’ve been so kind to me today. Raiders, I’m basically born into Raiders because I’m from Oakland. If you’re from Oakland and you’re not a Raiders fan, then you’re not from Oakland.
How has your style changed throughout your teens?
Zendaya: Probably a lot. When I was 13, I had no idea what I was doing. I think everybody starts off like that; everybody kind of finds their style as they go along. Even up until this year did I really find out who I am stylistically, who I wanted to be, and — you know –- creating your own trends and not following. Everybody needs their time and space to figure that out. For me, for everyone, it takes a little while, it takes some discovery, and that’s totally okay. Wear and dress for yourself and not anyone else.
Who are some of your current style icons?
Zendaya: I love a lot of rappers right now honestly. I like their style because I like taking that, and making them a little more feminine. I love Adele; she’s a timeless, classic beauty. I think she’s beautiful. She’s just a real woman. Janelle Monae, she has her own style, and it’s specifically hers. There [are] lots of people.
FYI, I’m obsessing over your nails (re: picture below). You’re always Instagramming awesome nail trends. What are you into/not into?
Zendaya: I refuse to do pointed nails. I do pointed rounded nails; more old-school Hollywood to me. They make my hands look better. Nail art for me is — it was one of those things that I just found my place, and I just have fun. I didn’t know it was a trend. I just thought it was cool. You can do anything, and it’s like having your own accessory wherever you go.
Switching gears, what do you hope your fans will learn from your book?
Zendaya: I want them to get some solid advice. It’s real and it’s from the perspective of an actual person who’s been there. It’s a little more fresh in my mind. I hate when books are written from the wrong perspective; when they’re written by adults for tweenagers. Like, do you truly remember what it’s like to be 12? No, not really. But me, it’s a fresh from my mind. Plus, time’s change. Now there’s so many factors; there’s social media, there’s so much more, so I hope this helps people.
Let’s talk about your music. Were you able to write most of it, or was it more collaborative?
Zendaya: It was more collaborative. I found a lot of the producers that we worked with — me and my dad, actually — we found a lot of the producers that we worked with; we found a lot of our own songs, collaborated with a lot of producers. They understand my style, they got where I was coming from, I told them what I wanted and they helped me create that. I definitely was lucky to work with people that truly understood me.
Bella [Thorne] had some exciting movie news recently. Do you think that’s something you’d also want to pursue?
Zendaya: Of course, in the future, I definitely want to do that. Right now, it’s all about music. Then, in the future, there’s so much more.
You killed it on Dancing with the Stars last season. Who are you rooting for this year?
Zendaya: I’m rooting for Val [Chmerkovskiy]. Val is my big brother; he’s family, and I will root for him forever. To me, he’s the most talented male dancer on that show, period. Technically, he’s #1. That’s from an actual standpoint of ballroom dancing. But, as a person, he’s so driven; he’s so committed. He’s family, so I’ll always [support] Val.
Zendaya’s self-titled album is available now, as well as her book, Between U and Me: How to Rock Your Tween Years with Style and Confidence. Select NFL Tweens and Juniors fashions can be purchased at retailers nationwide and online at NFLShop.com/Juniors. For more, take a look at the gallery below to see her rockin’ NFL Tweens & Juniors Apparel at the Jets vs. Steelers game!