“Games People Play” Star Parker McKenna Gets Personal About Self-Care

Parker McKennaPhoto Credit: Berlin Metaphorik
You might recognize Parker McKenna from her role playing Laila James in BET’s Games People Play, which is returning for its second season October 19th, or from AllBlkTV’s/ Amazon’s Emmy nominated series A House Divided, where she plays Summer.

No stranger to the spotlight with a 21-year career under her belt at the ripe young age of 26, McKenna is also known for playing little Katie in My Wife and Kids, (now streaming on Hulu), iCarly, Snowfall, NYPD Blue and Strong Medicine, amongst many other projects.

As one who is selective in the work she accepts and deliberate in her path, McKenna has a very clear vision for herself—and a mission to make a positive impact in the world. She’s spent the past six years working with the Stand Up to Cancer Foundation, and has created her own non-profit, Heartstrings Collective. Parker is also a tremendous advocate for women’s empowerment, and uses entertainment as her stepping- stone to prove the impact that women can have for good in the world. She’s been particularly vocal on Instagram about body positivity for women after giving birth last year, and encountering changes to her physique. She loves motherhood and her body, and is all about owning it.

Aside from her work in front of the camera she’s a singer, an avid entrepreneur (she has a swimwear line, as well as a haircare line coming soon), loves fashion and beauty, spending time with her family, and immerses herself in travel and culture as much as she can. She loves to create, and aims to create content that will have a lasting impact. Here, she discusses how she’s making waves and what she’s up to next.

Parker McKenna
Parker McKenna Posey as Laila James from BET’s “Games People Play” episode 103

Photo Credit: BET

Tell us about why self-care is so important to you, and how you factor that into your daily routine?

Self care is so important to me because everything starts with yourself!! I’m really big on feeling great so you can put your best foot forward and excel in all areas of your life! Self care can be something simple like making yourself your favorite tea every morning and setting your intentions for the day.

What can you reveal about the second season of BET’s Games People Play?

All I can reveal is that there will be even more drama than season one, a few of your long-awaited questions will be answered and yes! Everyone will be back.

Parker McKennaPhoto Credit: Berlin Metaphorik

How has your character, Laila, changed this season?

This season Laila really steps into her own. She’s finally dealing with her past, and focused more on LAILA, than “Golden Goddess LA”. although she’ll always be a boss and wants to be in the spotlight, she realizes there’s more to life than fame.

You’re also a part of the cast for A House Divided, (which was nominated for a Daytime Emmy). What can you tell us about your role, and are there any developments for another season?

I play Summer, this loud, know it all/not afraid to tell it all, wild child lol. A House Divided is such a great show to work on, with its many twists and turns, but my favorite part is working with my cast and crew! We’ve all become family so it doesn’t feel like work!!!! Go on Amazon and watch seasons 1-4 you will not be disappointed. Also, you can count on a season 5!

You have quite the entrepreneurial spirit with a swimwear line, and a hair care line in the works… when did you decide to cross-over into building brands?

Acting is my passion, but I love being creative in many different ways. I enjoy being a businesswoman who wears many hats; I figure why can’t you do it all!? I’m truly the happiest when I’m working. Plus I’m all about creating opportunities for myself, and my loved ones!! It’s all about generational wealth baby!

Parker McKennaPhoto Credit: Crystal Power/BET

What can you share about your upcoming hair care line?

I can’t share too much right now, but just know anything I put my name on is genuinely developed by me. I don’t just put my name on anything and hope it sells..I’m the type of person that likes to literally be in the factory handpicking everything down to fabric to ingredients. It’s really important to me to be involved in creating products I want to use– let alone, you all.

What is your number one beauty hack?

Silk pillow cases, oils, oils, oils! I have a mascara trick that may make you cancel your next lash appointment.

How do you balance your busy work schedule with being a new mom?

Support! I’m so thankful to have the best people around me, my family has always been by my side, supporting me through my career. Thank God for them!!! I’m also fortunate enough to have the type of career where I can bring my daughter with me from time to time.

Parker McKennaPhoto Credit: Berlin Metaphorik


You love luxury! Tell us about some of your favorite brands or products you’re loving/

Right now I’m loving Tatcha’s rice water cleanser, CBD eye patches, and this top secret product I’ve been using to grow out my hair.

When not filming, where is your favorite destination to sneak away to?

Ugh! I love traveling so that’s so hard…I also never like to go to the same places over and over and over again because I want to see the whole world! But if I had to choose I would choose somewhere in Europe to duck off to for a couple months. Then a couple weeks in Jamaica or Belize to get my Island fix!

What’s next for Parker McKenna?

Season two of Games People Play premieres in October (official date will be announced very soon). You can follow my motherhood journey and keep up with all my business endeavors on my IG @parkermckennaaa