Exclusive Interview with The Bachelor’s Olivia Caridi: Her Life Now
Former Bachelor contestant Olivia Caridi became known on Ben Higgins’ season for, among other things, her mouth. She became the frontrunner after receiving the first impression rose and maintained the spotlight with her often misunderstood one-liners plus trademark open-mouthed smile. When we last spoke to Olivia, she was settling back into post-Bachelor life. A year later, she is heading into yet another major phase with a recent move to Nashville, and the launch of her popular CBS Radio podcast, “Mouthing Off.” We got the scoop from Olivia on those developments in addition to her thoughts on the current season of The Bachelorette and upcoming Bachelor in Paradise.
Since your last Sarah Scoop interview, your life has changed a lot! What made you want to start your podcast, Mouthing Off?
My life is always changing so much! Since we last spoke I started my new podcast on CBS Radio called “Mouthing Off” and it was really a right place, right time situation. I was at CBS Radio doing a friend’s podcast and an executive found me and listened and from there they were interested in starting a show with me and I knew i wanted to incorporate my mouth in some way.
We bounced ideas back and forth and finally decided on “Mouthing Off!” For me, I wanted to start this as an opportunity for people to hear from the unedited Olivia and to really get to know me (since the person I was portrayed on the show wasn’t the greatest portrayal) and people are really loving getting to know me and of course the incredible guests I bring on!
What makes your podcast unique?
I’d say the fact that my podcast isn’t solely based around the Bachelor franchise is what makes my podcast unique! It’s a podcast for all reality television fans. I have guests from all sorts of Bravo shows (Housewives, Vanderpump Rules, Below Deck), Jersey Shore, Married at First Sight, Marriage Boot Camp, Southern Charm–there’s a show for everyone!
Who has been your favorite/most memorable guest on Mouthing Off?
I feel like every guest I’ve brought on is memorable in his or her own way, but I think I particularly enjoyed Kaitlyn Bristowe. She’s always been an inspiration to me because she is so authentic and sarcastic and true to herself, and in person and while recording, she was so open and honest and truthful. I really enjoyed just being in her presence and it felt like such an easy banter with her.
You also do recaps of The Bachelorette for People.com, what are your overall thoughts on Rachel’s season in the homestretch?
I love Rachel Lindsay so much; she’s honestly one of my favorite Bachelorette’s of all time. She’s so eloquent and accomplished and has the perfect amount of sweet and sassy. With that said, I thought that for someone as amazing as Rachel, she’d have the greatest cast ever–and it kind of fell short for me. She’s said in press that she is engaged and happy and that’s all I can ask for her, but I think the cast (whether it was true or just edited this way) didn’t seem to appreciate how great she is. From a viewers perspective, it definitely looks like Bryan is going to be her final choice, they are both so mutually attracted to each other and he’s so ready for marriage and i know she really wants that. Eric grew on me and I think he is so eager and sweet, but I get more friend vibes from him. Peter is, of course, great to look at, but I think his hesitation to get down on one knee will be a major issue for Rachel.
Is there a contestant on Rachel’s season that reminds you most of yourself or your experience?
I didn’t really see myself in any of the contestants on Rachel’s season. For the sake of the question, I’d have to say Kenny. I think he had a really strong start with Rachel, like I did with Ben, but then he started self-destructing in a way. Letting the actions of others get to him, focusing on the wrong things instead of his relationship with Rachel, overthinking the entire process. I did many of those things and I think that could be what led to both of our downfalls.
Will you be watching Paradise this season?
I haven’t really decided if I’m going to watch Paradise yet. Honestly, with covering the franchise so much, i like to take some time off from watching the show. I didn’t watch last season and I’m leaning toward not watching it this season.
If so, what are you most excited to see?
If I were to watch it, it would be to watch some of my friends from this franchise that I adore! Alexis Waters, Jasmine Goode, Raven Gates, Amanda Stanton, Vinny, Christen Whitney…all people that I love and I’d enjoy watching them (hopefully) find love.
Could you ever see yourself dating someone in the Bachelor world? Why or why not?
I’ve dated people from the Bachelor world before and from doing so I’ve learned that I could never or would never want to date someone from the franchise again. It’s just been hard to trust people I’ve ate from the franchise, there are too many secrets and rumors and I’d just like to have a relationship with a normal guy who respects that I did the show and that I talk about it for a living occasionally, but then leave all of that at the door.
What are you looking for in a guy?
I really just want someone nice. As I get older and as I’ve been single for longer and longer, I realize that i just need someone nice. I need someone driven, intellectual, adventurous, compassionate, honest and patient. It’s clearly hard to find, though!
You recently moved away from New York. What is one memory you will hold dear from your time in that city?
Oh gosh, so many memories. I’ll always appreciate the memory of how I met my best friend Lexi Stout. We met on Instagram in the city and we always tell the story and it’s just so funny. So many women meet cute guys on Instagram and vice versa for dating purposes, but I slid into Lexi’s DM to be gal pals and we went to lunch a few days later and have been inseparable ever since. It went down in the DM, as we always say.
What made you want to make the move to Nashville?
I think within the last two months of living in New York City, I just realized I wasn’t truly happy there. It was somewhere that I always wanted to live, and I’m immensely proud of my hustle and work ethic and making it happen there, but I just thought to myself, “Why am I paying an arm and a leg to live in an apartment the size of a shoebox? Why am I traveling on a subway system that barely works? Why am I living in a city of millions of people and I’ve never felt more lonely in love?” Then, I had to think about where I wanted to go, and I started my career in Tennessee and knew I loved the state. I visited Nashville once and I just knew it was the place for me. After just a week here, I already feel so at home. I have land, more relaxation, less hustle constantly, and the people here are so genuinely kind.
You’ve mentioned via social media (love your Snapchat) that you will be documenting your renovations on a house you recently purchased. What made you want to share this with people?
I think buying your first house is inspirational, so I want to share with young people that you can make an investment in your future by purchasing a home, but more importantly, I’ve never renovated a home before (not even sure if I know how to use a screwdriver), so I think it’s cool to show people the realities of renovations. We all watch home shows where the professionals make it look easy, but I want to realistically show people what it looks like to renovate your home, and I want it to be funny – that’s kind of my shtick. I know I’m going to be learning a lot about renovating and home ownership, why not show other people? I’m so excited!
What does it mean to you to own your own home and have the power to make it yours?
For me, owning a home and being a first-time buyer means freedom, security and stability form e. It’s a place where I can express myself in the decoration and also feel my most safe and secure. I’m so excited to finally have the opportunity to paint the walls with the color I want, to design just how I like, and all the while focus on long-term wealth and this great investment I made buying property in an up-and-coming area. It really is special to say, “I own a home.”
What is your advice for someone looking to move and start over?
My biggest piece of advice is to just DO it. If you’re not happy where you are, take initiative, find a place that works for you, and make that move. Don’t be afraid to not have friends right away or to be out of your comfort zone, just do it!
What is the biggest difference so far between living in NYC versus Nashville?
There are so many differences, but I’d say space is the biggest. For my three-story home in Nashville, my mortgage is half of what I was paying for rent in NYC to live in a shoebox essentially. I have a backyard here, whereas in NYC I saw a patch of grass here and there. The people are, in general, much nicer and welcoming here so I’ve found. I’m not rushing all the time; I have my car back, I have hiking trails – it’s just much more conduvice to my outdoorsy lifestyle. But it’s just as hot and humid here as it is in NYC, bummer!
What are your upcoming projects?
With my home renovations, my podcast, and hosting the Bachelor Nation station on Anchor (a radio app you should all have on your phones), I don’t know if I want to take on any other projects! I think my only other “project” would be getting out there and dating a little bit here in Nashville!
Any advice for future bachelor hopefuls?
I’d say that if you want to be on The Bachelor, make sure you’re ready for a massive life change. Get ready for all of your dirt to be aired to the world, get ready for lies to be spread about you in magazines, and for you to lose some sense of privacy. I’d also say that, while producers are kind and people do have true friendships with them, remember that what they advise you to do isn’t always in your best interest!
Don’t forget to follow Olivia to stay up to date & check out our other interview with her!