Becca Tilley Talks Love, Her New Blog, and In-N-Out
Becca Tilley has paid her dues as a contestant on both Chris Soules and Ben Higgins’ seasons of ABC’s “The Bachelor.” Through her rollercoaster ride of an experience on national television, she’s learned a lot, and is ready to focus on her own happiness. Becca is loving life after appearing on both seasons. She launched a blog over the summer with all things fashion and travel and continues to delve deeper into the style/beauty world. And of course, she is loading up on pizza, In-N-Out Burger, and Taco Bell whenever she gets the chance.
As The Chainsmokers and Coldplay’s “Something Just Like This” is playing in the background, Becca makes her entrance into to Toni & Guy Fashion Island fresh-faced and with a big smile—though this entrance wasn’t from a limo. She’s seemingly a pretty happy person in general, even before coffee. While maybe a bit shy initially, she was game to sit down and have some girl talk and give me a behind the scenes look at the reality show we all have grown to love. She has a touch of southern twang when she speaks, an infectious laugh, possesses incredible values, and all the qualities you want in your best gal pal.
Becca’s journey to find love began when her high school best friend nominated her for Season 19 of “The Bachelor.” She had no idea that her friend snuck in the nomination, so when she received the call that they’d like to have her on the show, she thought it was some sort of weird prank. Though Becca had never seen the show, she figured she’d give it a whirl since she had never even had a boyfriend before. While the end-goal of getting the Neil Lane ring was a bust, Becca left with something much more valuable than a diamond on her hand.
“While the show is shown in such a silly light, there is this deeper part of it where you learn so much about yourself. Because all you’re doing is talking about your feelings—about everything,” Becca says. “When I left, I was so thankful because I had learned so much about myself and dealt with issues I didn’t even realize I was holding onto. I’ve always been kind of closed off, and I think I still struggle with it. It was a weird learning experience, just in regards to myself, not even pertaining to the guy you’re trying to date.”
While the experience was enough for Becca to walk away with, it wasn’t necessarily what the show’s producers were looking for. “I remember at the end of it I didn’t cry. I don’t really get super emotional,” she says. “And [the producers] were just trying everything like, ‘C’mon, what can we do [to get her to cry]?’ They were so distraught that I wasn’t crying.” Becca admits that the producers’ input can be stressful—especially the first night.
“I walk in, and there are all of these girls and cameras, and I’m thinking, ‘What in the world did I just do?’ The first night I didn’t even talk to him. I couldn’t bring myself to interrupt him and the other girls. And I was just like, ‘Welp, I’m going home, this is so weird—I am not gonna do well in this environment,’’ she says. The producers were pushing her to go talk to him when she was feeling shy. “I just couldn’t. I couldn’t go and interrupt a girl I don’t even know. And the producers said, ‘If you want to talk to him, you’re going to have to interrupt.’ I don’t know why he kept me that first night; we exchanged like one sentence. He liked my shoestring dress, I guess,” she laughs.
While on the show, Becca revealed her choice to save herself for marriage. She received widespread media attention for it when the season aired—both negative and positive.
“I had a meeting with the creator of the show about “The Bachelorette” after Chris’ season. And he asked, ‘Why are you choosing to wait until marriage?’ And I told him that it’s just a choice I made, just like the choice you made to not wait until marriage. And I’m just sticking with it,” she says. “I didn’t want to make it a ‘thing’ on the show because I knew the minute I said it out loud, it would become part of my storyline. And there are times when I think, ‘Why did I say anything? Why didn’t I keep my mouth shut?’ But it’s really great because I have girls come up to me who are in their teens or young 20s and say, ‘I haven’t been able to feel confident in [this decision to save myself].’ Seeing the response from it, from real girls, and not just the media, it feels really good.”
Though Bachelor Chris was caught off guard by her decision, he seemed to respect her values. Becca made it to the hometown visit to meet his family in small farm town Arlington, Iowa. However, the connection they had made wasn’t necessarily enough to uproot Becca from her hometown. “I can’t tell you that I will move here,” Becca says she emphasized to Chris. “Even if you were madly in love with someone, it would still be a huge sacrifice. It’s not just a small town; it’s like desolate. We asked people in Iowa about the town, and they didn’t even know where it was. I was like, ‘What are you talking about, this is your state!’ I don’t know if there’s even a gas station.”
She didn’t end up taking home the ring, but she’s able to have a sense of humor about it. The whole notion of moving to a farm was almost comical to her. “Of course, they didn’t show any of my funny one-liners about farm life,” Becca says giggling. “Can we build a giant corn maze and I’ll get a tractor with a sound system?” she would ask Chris. “He was like, ‘Yeah, we’ll get you all of that.’ And then he sent me home.”
Becca loves a good one-liner joke and to poke fun at herself. She shared the stories of how girls interact on the show behind the scenes and often have each other’s backs. For instance, on Ben’s season, Becca tells the hilarious story of how she had to borrow JoJo Fletcher’s spanx for a one-on-one date in Mexico because she was bloated. “JoJo was wearing them all day and didn’t want to let me borrow them, but I was like, ‘Give them to me!’” she shakes her head and laughs. It’s friendship at its finest when you start sharing undergarments. While many contestants are adamant that they are not ‘here’ to make friends, it’s inevitable because there is so much downtime and no access to phones or internet. “If you’re not on a date, you’re just at the house or hotel hanging out,” she says. “I loved not having my phone because I had to have real conversations with people without distractions. You bond with these girls. And obviously, they don’t show that because the show isn’t about making friends. You spend more time with these girls than the guy.”
She’s come a long way since sharing spanx. When Becca isn’t strutting her stuff on the red carpet of the iHeart Radio Festival, glamming it up for her blog, or rubbing elbows with LA’s top bloggers at the Sundance Film Festival, she enjoys laying low at home with her girlfriends or sisters. Recently, JoJo was in town visiting, now one of Becca’s BFFs, and the two spent the entire day under the radar. “If I don’t have anything going on, I like to give my skin a break. Like yesterday, we didn’t put any makeup on,” Becca says. “We spent the whole day in our sweats. We looked really bad, but it was really nice. We went to CVS and bought a ton of junk food. And of course, we did the weird thing where we laid it all out and ate it all at once.”
But when it comes time to play dress up, Becca has a blast. After the routine of putting on a full face of makeup and assembling a cute outfit for every day of filming on “The Bachelor,” she learned a thing or two about style and beauty.
While many of the girls on “The Bachelor” dropped thousands of dollars on dresses for the show, that just wasn’t realistic for Becca, who was previously a chiropractor’s assistant before joining the competition for the final rose.
Her main thought was to just have enough dresses to make it until the end. “I know I could have gone home the first night. And the girls who spent so much money on dresses I was like, ‘Man, these girls have a lot more confidence in the situation than I do,’” she says laughing.
For Becca’s first season, a lot of her dresses were either her sisters’ or from Forever 21. “It’s funny because the first night on the show [of Chris’ season], I wore a hand-me-down dress and people were going crazy over it. I had this shoestring wrapped around my waist and everyone wanted to know where I got it,” she says. “There’s something about reality TV that’s attractive because it’s like watching your best friend or your neighbor on the screen. And people are like, ‘Oh, I feel like I have access to what they’re wearing.’ And whether you intend for it to happen or not, it just happens. When people are asking where my dress is from, I’m like, ‘Whew, I made a good decision.’”
And here lies her inspiration for her self-titled lifestyle blog, beccatilleyblog.com. As a style inspiration on national television, Becca formed quite the following, especially after two seasons. She has over a million followers on Instagram, and her audience continues to expand as she dabbles further into style/beauty, YouTube tutorials, and Q&A videos.
“[Blogging] is fun, but it’s also a lot of work. So, it’s been a huge learning experience,” Becca says. “I used to see bloggers on Instagram and think it’s the easiest job. But now that I see what goes into it, it’s given me so much respect for them—especially those who built their following from nothing. There’s a creative art to it that’s underappreciated.”
Under the umbrella of blogging, Becca talks about maybe doing more YouTube tutorials, but she jokes that she only has one way of doing her hair, so that would be challenging. While blogging may be a learning experience for her, it’s exciting. We look forward to see what she comes up with next!
Her journey began with the goal to find love, and she’ll get there. But for now, she’s having fun and enjoying life. Ultimately, she aims to learn how she can make an impact through this chapter of her life. “I want to leave a legacy that’s more than just this,” Becca says. “This is such a crazy fun industry, and sometimes I look around, and I’m just like, ‘How is this my life?’ But there’s also gotta be something more to it.”
Becca doesn’t have plans to do more reality TV anytime soon. However, she says doing a prank show would be a ton of fun. For now, keep on the lookout for her at a local In-N-Out Burger and for her blossoming blog where you can follow her style and travel adventures. We’re definitely falling for Becca Tilley.
Becca’s Go-To Cocktail: Moscow Mule
Miss Independent: Where does Becca like to hang out most? At home. “I’m such a grandma,” Becca says. “You just can’t tell by my [social media]. She also likes to go to movies by herself. “I can just focus on the movie and popcorn.”
Pizza is BAE: “I eat terribly, so nothing is a really a ‘splurge.’ But I guess if I were trying to eat healthy, the most difficult thing to give up would probably be pizza.”
Favorite Vacation Spot: Greece
Bachelor Regret: Getting gels put on her nails before the show.
Fashion inspiration: Kate Hudson, Blake Lively, Hello Fashion Blog, Happily Grey
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Becca Tilley Dishes on Bachelor Behind the Scenes, Love, and Fashion