Bekah Martinez made headlines last season on The Bachelor, as she was 14 years younger than leading man Arie Luyendyk, Jr. and was even reported missing by her mother midway through her reality TV stint. But now she is revealing she nearly went broke in her quest to be Arie’s wife. In a new essay for Glamour, Bekah detailed the lengths she went to fund her appearance on the ABC reality show, proving once and for all that love hurts — the pocketbook.
Bekah told Glamour that The Bachelor contestants are told to pack for eight weeks and “all kinds of weather,” with no hints about where they might travel to for their dream dates. Martinez said she packed bikinis, snow gear, and glamorous gowns before heading to The Bachelor mansion, despite the fact that she couldn’t afford a new wardrobe.
“My biggest fear was ‘Where am I going to get all these dresses?'” Martinez told Glamour.
“Between cocktail parties and rose ceremonies, if you’re going to be there for any amount of time, you’re going to need at least 10 dresses. I didn’t have really any at all. I was like, ‘This is going to cost me thousands of dollars if I buy all of these.’ Knowing that there’s a potential to go on the show for two months and not make any money during that time — I’m not working, but I still have to pay rent and all my living expenses — there was no way I could spend a few grand on clothes.”
Bekah had less than two weeks to get a Bachelor wardrobe together so she decided to reach out to friends, including a pageant queen, to borrow as many dresses as she could. She borrowed the snow gear from her mother and reached out to local swimwear companies to get some free bathing suits. Bekah was also able to borrow 12 dresses from fashion showrooms, but she still found that she had to purchase some items on her own. The Bachelor beauty told Glamour the following.
“I also went to Nordstrom Rack, where I bought a couple of dresses, jewelry, and some formal shoes. Shoes were a thing: I needed a bunch of heels that I didn’t have. I probably spent about $700 or $800 on that stuff, but when I got back to Los Angeles, I was so broke I returned everything that still had tags on.”
While Bekah was nearly broke after her Bachelor heartbreak (Arie sent her packing just ahead of the hometown dates) she didn’t go broke on hair products at all — because she doesn’t use them.
“My hair doesn’t require much,” Martinez told Glamour. “I actually don’t wash my hair, like, at all. I haven’t washed my hair for eight or nine months; I just rinse it. So I didn’t really need any hair products.”
For makeup, Bekah brought samples of foundation, sponges, mascara, and inexpensive eyelashes, while Bachelor production provided face wash, face wipes, body lotion, and other basics.
E! News previously estimated that female bachelor contestants spend roughly four times the amount that male Bachelorette contestants do to appear on the ABC reality franchise. Conversations with former members of Bachelor Nation revealed that female contestants typically shell out anywhere from $1,800 to $8,000 on Sephora shopping sprees and ball gowns before they head to make out mansion.
While she only spent about $1,000 of her own money to be on The Bachelor, Bekah revealed she emerged from the show broke due to the lack of a paycheck after quitting her job as a nanny to compete on the show.
“I had six weeks of not working, and then on top of that I didn’t get paid at all for being on the show,” Bekah told Glamour.
“I was definitely pretty broke when I got home.”
In the end, Bekah Martinez admitted she had no regrets about going broke for The Bachelor. The exposure from the show has opened up a lot of opportunities for her through appearances and sponsored social media posts, so Bekah’s days as a broke bachelorette are probably done.
The Bachelor returns to ABC for Season 23 in January.