Spoilers for The Bachelor ahead. Peter Weber's Bachelor season has begun! And thanks to early spoilers about group dates and one-on-ones, we already know some of the contestants who have the potential to win Peter's heart. We also know which contestants have already made a name for themselves for some of their pre-show activities, which is the case with Alayah Benavidez (opens in new tab). She's a former pageant winner, model, and strong competitor for the final rose...but she also had a seemingly serious boyfriend, until riiiight before she got involved in the show.
In episode three, Benavidez was eliminated after a drama-filled episode that saw several contestants tell Weber that Benavidez was, quote-unquote, not here for the right reasons. But then Weber began to have doubts, and a preview for the next week's episode showed that Benavidez returns. So, let's dig into it—what do we know about this pageant queen?
She's from Texas.
Benavidez is 23 (lots of the women on Peter's season are young), and from San Antonio. She went to the University of Texas at San Antonio. She's a model, and worked as an orthodontic assistant to pay for her education; She apparently wants to get her PhD at teach at the university level.
According to her pageant bio (opens in new tab), "her Read the Way program, which benefits local schools and literacy programs, is one avenue for her to constructively influence the lives of children." Also interesting: "While in high school, Alayah was diagnosed with dyslexia and told it was a disability...She turned her liability into the impetus 'to work smarter and strive higher' which propelled her into AP and dual credit courses."
She's a pageant winner.
Benavidez won Miss Texas USA in 2019. She also competed in Miss USA but didn't place. If you remember, pageant winners who just recently won but aren't able to present their crown to a new winner (Caelynn Miller-Keyes ran into this issue when she was filming The Bachelor in 2018) get into hot water. If Alayah does well—she's still on the show, according to spoilers—this might become a problem for her.
She was dating someone right before she auditioned for the show.
And the rumor, of course, is that she broke up with him to go on the show (it's happened before, but sometimes it can cause issues for the contestant). Reality Steve (opens in new tab) has screenshots from her account with him as her "pageant boyfriend," lugging things around for her.
Mader has a few posts up that speak to their previous relationship, like this one in March:
And this one where he's actually at Miss USA:
His account hasn't addressed the split directly, at least not in terms of his posts. There aren't many details at this point, but no doubt Bachelor fans are digging. Ironically, Peter was dinged for doing something similar (opens in new tab)...so now they have something in common? I dunno.
She was eliminated in episode three—and came back?
Episode three was all about Benavidez. The whole episode centered around whether she was being "real" and "here for the right reasons"—there's at least one of these run-ins every season—and Weber went back and forth between the other contestants and Benavidez t0 try to figure out what's what. Benavidez insisted that she was being genuine and that her only intention was to get to know Weber; the other contestants disagreed. Ultimately, Weber gave his final rose Mykenna, a Canadian fashion blogger, instead of Benavidez.
But then! Weber had second thoughts about sending Benavidez home, and started to ask producers if he'd made the wrong choice. And previews for next week's episode show the return of Benavidez, which, as you might imagine, makes the other contestants real mad.
So, uh, stay tuned!
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Katherine’s a Boston-based contributor at Marie Claire who covers fashion, culture, and lifestyle—from “Clueless” to Everlane to news about Lizzo. She’s been a freelancer for 11 years and has had roles with Cosmopolitan and Bustle, with bylines in Parents, Seventeen, and elsewhere. It’s “I go to dinner,” not “Her huge ego,” but she responds to both.
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