Here’s Who Will Win ‘The Bachelor,’ According to a Body Language Expert
*Warning: Spoilers ahead*
You don’t have to be a body language expert to see who Peter Weber, season 24’s Bachelor, is into (we mean, just look at how many women he’s kissed already). But, after carefully watching Peter meet the candidates in The Bachelor season 24 premiere, we decided it couldn’t hurt to get an expert opinion about who he’s vibing with, who he feels so-so about and who’s bound to become the next franchise villain. So, we spoke with body language expert and psychotherapist Toni Coleman to get the full scoop on how she thinks this season will play out. And she had a lot of thoughts.
Decoding Peter’s Body Language (AKA what to watch for)Peter has a few “tells,” Coleman explains. “When he is attracted to a woman, he rubs his thumbs/fingers against the skin of her hands/arms. It indicates a desire to get closer and that being close to this woman feels good. He also either touches her hand lightly (connecting, but not feeling strongly/not wanting to be vulnerable), grabs her wrist or grabs her forearms (strong attraction and wanting to be close). He also interlocks fingers, which is another sign of strong attraction and a desire to be closer.”
Coleman goes on to say that there are even more messages to decode from Peter’s hands: “Another tell of Peter’s I picked up repeatedly is rubbing his hands together. When this is done quickly, as Peter did, it communicates an expectation that something good is about to happen. The faster the rubbing, the higher the excitement.” She notes that he also grabs and straightens his lapels quite frequently, which shows that he wants to look good.
But it’s not just his hands that give him away—it’s also his mouth. “Peter pulls his bottom teeth upward, biting his top lip, which is a sign that can mean either flirting or discomfort/insecurity. This is where context is everything. Biting lips is universally seen as a physical response to an emotional state (anxiety, stress),” Coleman points out.
She also notes that “Peter pulls his lips inward, making his lips a thin line, which can indicate tension, frustration or disapproval. When someone does this, they are holding their mouth closed, keeping something in.” In this instance, it’s probably how nervous he feels or his gut reaction to a Bachelor contestant.
Last but not least, Coleman noticed that Peter took each woman’s hands and hugged them. Although he was an equal opportunity PDA-er, it was the way in which he did this that really set them apart. “The difference is in how he holds their hands, how long, how strong the grip and how his body leans,” she says.
So where did we see this revealing body language in action? Let’s take a look at the first impressions that seemed to have the biggest impact on Peter.
1. Hannah Ann
It’s easy to see that Hannah Ann, 23, and Peter hit it off immediately. Coleman says, “Both Peter and Hannah Ann offered an open-mouthed smile when she exited the limo. He gave her a very full-body embrace, drawing her in closely, with his head on her shoulder. He turned all the way around to watch her walk into the mansion, clasping and unclasping his hands (which shows excitement) in front of him.” First impressions mean a lot and we already know he has a thing for girls named Hannah (more on that later).
As for Hannah Ann, Coleman notes that “Her voice got lower, softer and sultrier when she spoke to him. She also tilted her head as he talked, which conveys interest and flirting.”
Once inside the mansion, Hannah Ann and Peter “talked closely, holding hands and facing one another as they sat. After she shared something, he raised her hand and kissed it, indicating that he loved what he heard. He also kissed her first and it was long and passionate,” Coleman points out, adding, “His physical chemistry appeared to be strongest with Hannah Ann.” We have to agree there.
But Hannah Ann and Peter’s interest in one another didn’t land with everyone. As Coleman notes, “Hannah was aggressive during the evening, interrupting other girls’ time while feigning sweetness when gently confronted by another contestant. She will become one of the disliked girls in the home for sure.” Amen to that. The maxim “You gather more bees with honey,” may be true in the real world, but the Bachelor mansion is a battlefield all its own.
2. MadisonIt’s no secret that Peter loved Madison’s (23) oversized paper plane. How do we know? Coleman noticed because “he straightened his lapels upon seeing her, and when he took her hands, he actually grabbed her arms near the elbows, pulling her close and demonstrating a desire to be as close as possible. When they embraced, he wrapped himself around her for the hug.”
But the PDA didn’t stop there. “Later in the mansion, they held hands warmly as they talked. They also played with the plane and the scene showed comfort and ease. His eye contact and attention was strong, as was hers to him. Lots of chemistry, but not just physical,” Coleman explains. And don’t even get us started on their first date…
This wasn’t Kelley (27) and Peter’s first meeting and it definitely showed. Coleman explains, “Peter recognized her immediately when she stepped from the limo and was excited to see her. Both laughed warmly as she walked towards him. Peter bent forward and his eyes widened, which shows happy surprise at seeing her. He grabbed her hands and initiated a little dance, showing comfort and familiarity.” When Kelley walked into the mansion, he turned around fully to watch her and, again, straightened his lapels. Peter equals easy to read.
But Kelley didn’t feel as comfortable with their face-to-face as Peter appeared to. Coleman points out that, “Kelley appeared a bit nervous. She laughed nervously, kept her head down and her shoulders forward. But her smile was warm and full.” However, she grew more confident in the mansion once he told her how happy he was she had come on the show.
She seemed to undergo a complete 180 by the end of the first evening, interrupting other girls and asking for more time. Coleman admits this is a sign that “she will probably be one of the disliked girls in the home. And, when she tells the other women she previously met him, they are not happy.” If looks could kill, amirite?
4. Victoria P
My, how different the Victorias are. During Victoria P.’s (27) first interaction with Peter, he “showed a strong attraction,” Coleman notes. “He took in a deep breath and then exhaled—a sign he was blown away. She exited the limo with hands in a praying position—saying I hope and pray this goes well. Both let out a low laugh and he held her hands tightly and rubbed his thumbs against them as they talked.” Although they don’t spend a ton of time together in the mansion, her first impression appeared to have been a lasting one.
5. AlayahIn this instance, Peter’s mouth told us everything we needed to know. “Peter offered a full, wide smile as she approached him and held her hands gently and carefully,” Coleman explains. “He raised his eyebrows as she approached, showing interest. He turned fully around to watch her walk away.” The attraction was definitely clear.
In the mansion, their conversation flowed easily and he “tilted his head as she spoke, which shows interest.” Like with the other women he’s vibing with, Peter held Alayah’s (24) hands and fully faced her when she spoke. Coleman adds, “He loved her grandma letter and they seem to form a bond around love of family.” For someone as family-centric as Peter, this is definitely important.
There’s no denying it: Peter got a kick out of Courtney’s, 26, flight-inspired entrance. The proof? “He straightened his lapels and laughed as she approached. But he held her hands lightly and leaned back as he spoke, keeping some distance. They joked and laughed, seesawing arms as they talked.” Coleman adds, “It’s more friendly than sexual, but he liked her and mentioned her beautiful eyes.”
Peter showed his attraction to Sydney, 24, by “raising his eyebrows, rubbing his thumbs against her palms as they talked and pulling her towards him as they held hands,” Coleman says. It’s also worth noting that he “hugged her two times and turned all the way around to watch her walk into the mansion. He definitely found her sexually attractive.”
NOW, WHAT ABOUT THE RELATIONSHIPS PETER SEEMS LESS INVESTED IN?
1. NatashaSure, Peter went in for a hug with Natasha (31), but there was no hand-holding. “Later in the house, they talked, but his eye contact was not steady and he only held one of her hands lightly.” Bottom line: She might not be around for long.
When Mykenna, 22, and Peter met, she immediately checked him out. “He rubbed his palms together, as if in anticipation, but it faded quickly,” Coleman says. She explains that Mykenna initiated the rest of their contact: “Later in house, she interrupted another woman’s time. He asked her to come back and then they talked and she went in for a kiss. She initiated it, but he didn’t seem to reciprocate as eagerly as he did with other women. She got some attention for her grandparents story, as family stories resonate with Peter, but will it be enough?” From the looks of it, probably not.
There’s not a whole lot to work with here, which could possibly be due to the fact that Deandra (23) immediately brought up that one time he was, um, intimate with former Bachelorette Hannah Brown four times in a windmill. Although Peter hugged her, Coleman noticed that he kept his body back upon greeting her. “His hug looked awkward, like what someone gives an aunt,” Coleman points out. “It may have been the windmill on her back, but the lack of chemistry was evident.”
4. Sarah“His reaction to Sarah was mixed,” Coleman says. Why? Well, “he hugged her and spun her around when they met, but when she walked into the mansion, he did not turn fully around, his lips were compressed and his hands went into his pockets.” These are all signs of wanting to hide his feelings. Although they intertwined their hands in the mansion, Sarah (24) seemed to be more into him than he was into her. Uh-oh.
Alexa, 27, didn’t make a big impression on Peter. Their hug was quick and he barely grabbed her hands. Bummer.
Kiarra, 23, made an interesting entrance. Sure, Peter helped her out of the suitcase she arrived in and held her hands lightly, but because he positioned his palms away from her hands, Coleman says there wasn’t a lot of interest on his end.
Honestly, Peter seemed a bit uncomfortable with her opening about the whole “four times” thing. Although he laughed and took her hands, Coleman points out that he felt awkward, since his head was positioned down and he smiled only weakly. We guess the joke didn’t totally land.
8. SavannahLike most strangers, Peter didn’t seem totally relaxed when Savannah, 27, blindfolded him, felt him up, then kissed him. “He pulled back after a brief kiss and asked her to take the blindfold off as he removed it. He didn’t take her hands and watched her walk away into mansion, but his lips were folded tightly into one another as though he was holding something negative back,” Coleman explains. Yeah, we don’t blame you, dude.
Sure, Peter was welcoming when Lauren (26) arrived, “but his lips were stiff and slightly closed as he said it,” according to Coleman. Conversely, he did tell her she’s gorgeous and turned around to look at her as she walked in. This communicated that he finds her physically attractive but that there’s still something missing.
The 26-year-old contestant went out on a limb and spoke Vietnamese to him, but he looked confused and awkward. He didn’t totally smile and kind of averted his eyes. As Coleman puts it, there are “no signs of chemistry.” Ouch.
There’s not a lot of chemistry, but Peter laughed when Tammy (24) did a TSA wand check on him. However, he didn’t seem to like being handcuffed or kissed and asked her to let him go. The verdict from Coleman? He’s “not that into her.”
Their first meeting can best be described as awkward. They walked into the house together, but Peter only held one of her hands and immediately jumped to another woman once they were inside.
13. This season’s first problem contestant: Victoria F.
At first, there was little to go off of. Victoria F., 25, was too nervous to properly deliver her punch line and was then devastated when Peter didn’t remember what she said. Peter smiled when they met, but it wasn’t a full smile. And although he reassured her that her joke was great, he gave off vibes that he feels protective over her, not necessarily interested in dating her. He also bit his lower lip in discomfort as she walked away.
What we can discern from Victoria F.’s first impression is that she’s potentially going to be one of the more dramatic figures this season. As Coleman puts it, “She’s affected and will probably be trouble in the house.”
The biggest surprise guest award goes to…Hannah BrownLike us, you were probably wondering what the heck Hannah B., 25, was doing when she arrived at the mansion. Coleman has more than a few ideas: “Hannah came onto the scene, telling him she wants what is best for him, but it’s a mixed message. She clearly wants what she lost out on. Returning his wings after leaving the limo was her way of reminding him about what they had and feeling out his interest. The windmill story on the group date was a message to the women about what she and Peter had. And when he found her crying, she attempted to gaslight him, feigning confusion about why she didn’t reach out to him back then and even attempting to blame him for not reaching out. She was vague, held back and tried to get him to tell her he wants to try again.”
All in all, it was a ruse to promote herself (*cringe*) and if she returns to the house, we’re guessing she won’t be held in high regard by the rest of the women.
Now, for the first group dateAs expected, Hannah Ann came out of the group date having monopolized a lot of Peter’s attention. They flirted, sat close during class and laughed a lot. Victoria P. got some attention for showing her boldness despite her motion sickness and it paid off. Although she didn’t get the group date rose, he did give her flowers. But it was Kelley that went for the win. She cheated on the obstacle course, got some kisses from Peter and won the rose, which the women did not like. We’re guessing this will cause problems for her in the house later.
As for Victoria F. and Shiann, their interactions with Peter were more subdued and they seemed to lack a real connection.
The First One-on-One
We figured Madison would get the first one-on-one when she wasn’t included in the group date. What we didn’t foresee was how intimate her day with Peter would be. Not only did she meet his entire family, but she attended his parents’ vow renewal ceremony. Coleman says he “clearly sees her as a potential keeper. Their connection was unmistakable.” How can we tell? “They frequently mirrored one another—head movements, voice tone and inflection, and used similar expressions and phrases. Madison told Peter he felt ‘like home,’ and this appeared to resonate with him as he looked deeply into her eyes and nodded his head in agreement,” Coleman explains.
The Second Group Date
This one was a bit more dramatic than group date number one since Hannah Brown not only planned the whole thing but decided to send Peter some really complicated signals after telling the women all about their sex life. Aside from the fact that Brown was toying with poor Peter, Coleman notes, “It’s interesting that the door was left open when she was crying. Maybe it was to ensure he would hear her? This scene felt like a Hail Mary pass on her part, and clearly Peter was confused and feeling badly about the other women. Peter’s problem is that he can’t read deceit and clearly was smitten with Hannah. He is loyal and if she stays, it will cause turmoil.” We definitely agree with that.
So, judging from body language cues, who do we think will win? That honor goes to...Madison!
Still, we can’t wait to see what transpires with the Hannah-Peter drama when The Bachelor season 24, episode two airs Monday, January 13, at 8 p.m. on ABC. We’ll be watching their every move.