Nikki McKibbin was born on September 28, 1978 in Grand Prairie, Texas. Her unique personal style was often the subject of mockery as she was growing up. When she graduated from high school, Nikki decided to attend cosmetology school and after finishing her studies went on to found the karaoke company Angelfire Productions. In 2005, she shifted her focus to music, selling her business in the process. Aside from being a businesswoman, Nikki was also once a singer at the Dallas Coyote Ugly Bar and a stripper, a job that she accepted in order to support her son, Tristen. Just before auditioning for season 1 of American Idol, Nikki separated from her first husband. Nikki likes Simon the most out of the three American Idol judges because she appreciates the British judge's honesty and candid remarks. She likes listening to the music of Stevie Nicks and has the soundtrack of the movie "Now and Then."
Facing many difficulties throughout her life did not discourage Nikki from pursuing a career in music. She first auditioned for the show Popstars, where she made it to the Top 20, but when that didn't work out, she tried her luck in season 1 of American Idol. She went to Pasadena, where she gained a golden ticket from the judges by singing her favorite song, "Unchained Melody" by the Righteous Brothers. During the semifinals, she won America's hearts with her rendition of Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse of the Heart" and in the following week was standing on stage as one of the ten finalists. Her performance in the finals was inconsistent, but she managed to make it to the Top 3, despite being in the bottom 3 five times. When it came down to Choice Selections Week, Nikki failed to capture America's votes with the songs "Black Velvet" and "Edge of Seventeen," consequently becoming the eight contestant to be eliminated.
After appearing on American Idol, she received a contract with 19 Management and RCA records, but when she refused to do a country album due to her love for rock music, she failed to release any records with the companies. In 2005, Nikki joined several reality shows like Fear Factor, Battle of the Network Reality Stars and Kill Reality and in the same year joined the rock band Downside, which she eventually left citing creative differences as the reason. She is currently under the management of Joe Canizarro of Chenoa Music and Mike Puska of Astral Records.
- She used to be a cheerleader in high school.
- She was married to Joshua Ozment from 2001 to 2002. Later on, she wed Craig Sadler.
- She is the owner of a karaoke company.
- Two instruments she plays are the piano and trumpet.