You guys, things are getting real. Our Season 16 Bachelor, Ben Flajnik, has met the parents and is ready to "take things to the next level" with three different "incredible women." All in one week. Thank God he rinses off in all those hottubs, because Sir Dates-A-Lot has got three different ladies allll over him after Episode 9's overnight dates. Yuck.
But enough about germs -- let's talk fashion. Unfortunately, there are only three would-be Mrs. Flajniks left... fortunately, these three have been some of my fashion faves throughout the entire season: Nicki, Lindzi and Courtney.
The gang is in Switzerland in the picturesque town of Interlaken. Fun fact: I have actually visited Interlaken, spending time there with my family when I was just a kid. Who knew that over a decade later, I'd be writing up a reality TV recap about a town where I took a family vacation in 1996? Not I.
Moving on. These are the overnights, people, so consider the ante upped. Nicki gets the first date, joining Ben for a helicopter ride (haven't these people ever heard of dinner and a movie?). For her big day, Nicki chooses a flattering but rather plain outfit: dark pants, leather boots, a coordinating cobalt sweater and wool coat and a white scarf to top it off. Of course she also had her signature "extras": painted nails and big earrings. Surprisingly, her hair is straight and parted on the side -- sleek and sophisticated.
The coat was cute (in a place like Switzerland, it's the outerwear that matters) but I wasn't blown away by the matchy-matchy look. In fact, I much preferred Ben's bulky jacket... given that this is a man who occasionally straightens his hair and wears dainty bow ties, a rugged look was a much-needed change.
For the evening portion of the date, Nicki sticks with pants but changes tops: a lowcut white tank, a black jacket/sweater thing and a colorful scarf. The neckwear pulls it together, but she clearly stays cozy and warm. Given that they weren't in Belize or some other warm, exotic location, she did as best she could and looked lovely.
Also, I would be remiss to note that she also looked great in her turquoise bikini back at the Fantasy Suite. (At least, that's what my male "Bachelor" commenters/hecklers informed me.)
Next up: Lindzi. The horse lover is subjected to yet another death-defying, fear-of-heights inducing date, which this time includes rappelling down a ravine. Awesome -- we hope she brought her Depends.
What she didn't bring was athletic gear. Is it just me, or did it look a little strange to see Lindzi hooked into her rock climbing gear in tight jeans, a light cardigan and leather boots? On the ground, the outfit was just blah; hanging in air, it looked seriously out of place.
Luckily Lindzi stepped it up in the evening, baring her legs (they are one of her best assets, after all -- and Ben's a leg man) in a short, dusty purple minidress. She kept things classy with a high neckline and delicate sheer sleeves, adding a hint of glitter with a sparkly necklace. Overall, Lindzi hit the nail on the head.
Also, it must be noted: BEN IS WEARING ANOTHER BOW TIE. Who does he think he is, Brad Goreski? Ben, when it comes to quirky fashion signatures, your hair is your "thing." And no one is supposed to have more than one "thing." Give up the twee ties.
Last but not least, what you've all been waiting for... Courtney! Loathe as I am to say it, Courtney had my favorite look this week. The city-chic model arrived for her Swiss date wearing an adorable black coat that flounced out at the waist, giving an otherwise sleek, simple look a flirtatious touch. She kept the rest simple: black pants, black over-the-knee boots and a black scarf with a colorful rose print. Her outfit was pulled-together but actually interesting, as opposed to her two competitors' date looks. Well done, sneaky Courtney.
The head-to-toe black proved to be a trend: for the night portion of her date, she wore a stretchy black, off-the-shoulder dress/tunic with black tights and boots. This didn't work as well and was a bit amateur for someone who's usually so competent in getting dressed. Oh well.
[Sidenote: Kacie B. returns, which is probably -- by which I mean definitely -- a bad idea. But at least she chose a great pair of jeans for a film segment that focused at least 50% of the time on her lower half.]
Then, for the Rose Ceremony, Courtney slipped into a black, long-sleeve lace minidress with black tights. This is a big deal. We almost never see "Bachelor" contestants wearing tights, either because they shoot in warm (and sometimes unbearably hot) locales and/or the ladies are trying to show off their bodies. Neither of those facts applied to Courtney tonight: the ladies were still safely ensconced in their Swiss chalet and Courtney, as opposed to the others women, has never been into showing off her legs. (Her chest, however, she'll show to basically anyone.)
And while the black tights might not have been the best pick with that dress (it was, after all, a lot of black), it was at least interesting. Lindzi chose a deep navy halter dress with a severely unflattering mid-calf, asymmetrical hemline. Nicki, bless her heart, wore another unflattering dress (although not as bad as last week's disaster): a white, one-strap cocktail dress that stretched across her chest and emphasized the tops of her arms. Tip: unless you're built like Miss Model, a.k.a. Courtney, that's not a good look.
Also, her hair was sort of frizzy. But I'll let it slide -- I mean, who hasn't had a few bad hair days?
Ultimately the hair and dress mattered very little... soon, Nicki had more pressing issues. She sobbed upon her exit, leaving Lindzi and Courtney to battle for Ben's half-assed, sorta unenthusiastic love. One bonus: I think I spotted a Cartier tank watch on the Bachelor's wrist as he was holding Nicki's hands and saying good-bye. That's pretty sweet.
But not as sweet as next week's episode, when all the women return for "The Women Tell All"! This is guaranteed to be a fashion bonanza, as the spurned contestants return to show off how good they look since getting dumped. For many it will be their last chance to milk "The Bachelor" TV fame... so they're bound to step up their style game.
I'm pumped -- are you? While we wait, check out pics from last night's episode. Which lady had the best look?
Follow Ellie Krupnick on Twitter: www.twitter.com/elliekrupnick