Brie Bella: An Exclusive Chat With The Star Of ‘Total Divas’
The term “Brie Mode” has brought on a new meaning. It once described the moment when Brie Bella would channel her party persona but now it represents something more than that. It represents strength.
With her husband now retired and her sister facing an uncertain future, the WWE Diva is now the last one standing. Bella has embraced the role with nothing but tenacity and toughness. She’s become “Momma Brie” as she tells it. The down-to-earth other half of the Bella Twins, has reached a point in her career where she’s trying to determine the next chapter in her life.
That’s never an easy thing to do with the cast of Total Divas and the drama that ensues.
CraveOnline: This season you have taken on more of a motherly role especially with your sister [Nikki Bella]. Has that always been your role or were the roles reversed?
Brie Bella: They were completely reversed. My sister had always taken care of me. Oh my God. That’s how “Brie Mode” started. Come on [laughs]. It’s funny because I was always the really wanderlust and always all over the place. I think my sister was always worried. I was like ‘Okay. I’m going to go live in L.A.’ and ‘Now I’m going to live in New York’ and ‘I want to move to Italy.’ I was just crazy all over the place. It was always my sister having to pull in the reigns on me.
Now you’re right. It’s completely different. I’m the mother to not only my sister but to my husband [Daniel Bryan’]. I’m also a nurse. How is it that I’m the smallest out of both of you yet I feel like I’m the strongest one standing? I’ve definitely taken on the mother role. I don’t know if it’s now my age and me wanting to have kids soon, that it’s all just coming out but I feel like I’m a nester. I’ve become like “Momma Brie.”
Yeah, I can see that. Your mature side came out earlier this season when you refused to let Nikki to stay in your hotel room and told her to grow up.
I literally lost my cool. I think people don’t realize that we’re on the road five days a week and we have crazy drives. We’re going from town-to-town and I don’t get a lot of off time at home so you just want a couple of hours of peace and quiet to yourself.
Fatigue of drama
CraveOnline: Total Divas has no shortage of drama. Most of us go out of our way to avoid conflict so seeing some of the confrontations on the show can be cringe-worthy. Is that ever exhausting and do the cameras add to the stress of the situation?
Brie Bella: You have no idea how exhausting it is. It’s like the one time in my life that I’m like ‘I might need therapy’ [laughs]. My sister and I were raised as tomboys. We were very much like “guy chicks.” I would never get into drama in middle school or high school. I never got caught up in drama. I think what happens is, that when they put a cast together, they’re putting people together who have completely different personalities.
We also range from 22-years-old all the way to 32-years-old and I’m at the end of that scale. There’s some stuff where I’m like ‘I can’t do babysitter.’ I should be able to go to the bathroom without telling anyone and not have people get upset about it. When they put the cameras on you, some personalities will amp up because they’re showing off or whatever it is and it can be chaos. There are times where I don’t know if I can do this but at the end of the day, we always make-up, we realize we’ve been silly here and we’re exhausted so let’s blame it all on that. I think that’s why we all fight like sisters. I already got one sister to fight with; do I really have to fight with like five other people?
“I can’t stand watching myself act.”
CraveOnline: Do you watch the show or are you one of those people who can’t stand to watch themselves?
Brie Bella: I watch the show but I can’t stand watching myself act. It’s like that with my wrestling too but I have to watch because that’s how you grow and learn but I’m like ‘Wow! No one ever told me I sounded like a dude.’ I didn’t realize how deep my voice was and some of my faces, I will sit there and laugh out loud while I cringe or cover my face in embarrassment. I definitely watch but I’m literally blushing every time.
The master of the selfie?
CraveOnline: There’s a lot of selfies being taken by the cast. Who is the guiltiest of constantly taking pictures of themselves?
Brie Bella: It’s definitely between Paige, Natalya and Nikki. They’re constantly on their phones and taking selfies. Actually, Nikki is not even as bad as Natalya and Paige. They’re the worst. I’m the worst at taking selfies. I don’t have sexy selfies because I get very embarrassed when I take them and usually, my husband is like ‘Where’s Waldo?’ because he’s somewhere hiding and laughing when he sees me do it. I can’t take a picture of myself in a bikini and be like ‘Motivation Monday.’ I just can’t do it so I’ll just post a picture of Bryan, my dog and I.
Life on the road
CraveOnline: You’re on the road a lot so what is your routine in terms of exercising? I imagine that can be rather difficult to do when living out of a suitcase.
Brie Bella: I love Barre and I love yoga. When I’m on the road, I always look for a Barre especially now that Pure Barre is all over the place. That has been really nice. I’ll go to Pure Barre or Yoga Spot before I go to TVs on Monday and Tuesday and then Wednesday, I try to do something that’s more relaxing whether it’s swimming or walking or jumping on the elliptical for 30 minutes to an hour. Then I try to go harder during the week. Also, we will go on the road Friday, Saturday and Sunday so those days I’ll usually go to a gym and just lock myself up for two hours and really hit it hard. By doing that, I don’t feel so guilty when I take off a couple of days a week or can’t find a place before TV.
A healthy lifestyle
CraveOnline: What about your diet?
Brie Bella: We’re so healthy. I make sure to consume plenty of vegetables every day. Vegetables keep you very full and I’m also a vegetarian but yeah, they keep you extremely full so you’re not hungry and you always feel satisfied. I stay away from sweets. I’ll treat myself here and there but I’ll stay away from fried foods but I love french fries. I’ll treat myself once a week to some french fries.
On Wednesday night, is when Bryan [Danielson] and I get our gluten-free pizza. Bryan has a gluten allergy so we stay away from gluten a lot but I’ll indulge here and there. I’ve really come to love the gluten-free options. I don’t stress about what I eat. I’ve created this healthy lifestyle. I very much enjoy it and I always feel satisfied.
CraveOnline: Can you tell me a little bit about how your business Experience Local started?
Brie Bella: I’m obviously very hippie-like and I’m always in a different city and town and country and I thought ‘Why is it that the big food chains are always so promoted? I want the whole ingredients. I don’t want preservatives. I want what this town and these farmers produce and see how their chefs create. We do a lot of research and we go to these local food spots. I also thought since I was going to these different towns, why don’t I support their own economy and own mom-and-pop shops? That’s how Experience Local came about. This was something I was doing for years. I wanted to use my platform and help these people and showcase them.
The ideal date night
CraveOnline: I asked your husband this last year so I’m going to see how you match up. What is your ideal date night? I know you’re not the romantic one judging from Total Divas.
Brie Bella: [Laughs] I know. Isn’t that horrible? I always thought I was but I’m not. Seriously, I think because I’m so buy all of the time that I always look forward to our Wednesday nights. We’ll walk to our favorite pizza joint, pick up our gluten-free pizza, we’ll go home, pick up some chips and salsa too, we’ll get a great movie and I’ll have a glass of wine and we just get our alone time together. We have Josie [their dog] with us in bed and then I’m indulging, relaxing and I’m in sweatpants [laughs]. For me, that’s a perfect date night but I’m married so that’s a married date night.
The next Total Diva?
CraveOnline: Let’s switch back up to Total Divas. You have some new blood with Amanda on the show but since you’re feuding with Lana on the main roster, how would you feel if she got cast for the show?
Brie Bella: I think Lana would be great because she’s engaged to Rusev, she’s a main roster girl and seeing girls work hard on the main roster is amazing to me because everything you go through. Seeing her backstory with all of that would be really neat. Now that her and I are in a feud on Raw and SmackDown, it would be neat for fans to see the backstage of it all from her side. I think people would really love to see that Russian background yet she lives in Nasvhille, it’s all kinds of crazy. Oh, and she’s a break-dancer. I don’t know if many people know that. She was a professional dancer. She was backup dancing for Pink. When you see her dance, your jaw drops because it doesn’t look right cause it’s Lana. That’s very good breakdancing but that’s Lana so it just freaks you out.
CraveOnline: You have made no secret about wanting to start a family. Your fans have to know…who has the naming rights of your first-born: you or your husband?
Brie Bella: My husband does. He actually has the naming rights to all of our children. Yeah, can you believe it? But this is how my dog got her name Josie. I always wanted to name my little girl Josie but because my husband comes from a family where their names all start with B’s. His sister is Billie Sue, his mom is Betty and his dad is Buddy. Well, he happened to marry a Brianna so because my name starts with a B and his name starts with a B, he was like ‘We can do the same tradition as I did and it would mean so much.’ What am I supposed to say to that? No? I was like ‘fine.’ But if we had a son, we would really love to name our son after his dad because that was Bryan’s best friend and he unfortunately passed a year-and-a-half ago. I do love the name “Birdie.” I think that’s cute.
“It’s time to become a mom.”
CraveOnline: How much longer do you see yourself on Total Divas and in the ring?
Brie Bella: The hard thing for me is that my husband was forced to retire not too long ago and he’s now looking at his new chapter in life and he’s finding something to capture his heart kind of like wrestling did. It kind of puts me in this position that I realize I’m 32 and Bryan will be 35 here soon. It makes us look at each other and believe we’re ready to become parents. I was always going back and forth and saying ‘I’m not ready to hang up my boots because I love wrestling so much.’ However, seeing him retire and knowing he won’t come back on the road, really made my heart tell me that this was it. It’s time to become a mom.
It’s definitely around the corner. We want to start trying soon. It’s just me trying to take very deep breaths and knowing that I’m going to have to come to an end here soon. One thing is, I don’t mind reality. I think it’s been fun to show that Bryan and I share a Honda Fit and we’re huge environmentalists and we’re big activists for animal rights.
I think it would be neat for people to see us as parents too because people might be shocked at how we raise our children. I’m a vegetarian though so if I get pregnant, what the heck do I do [laughs]? Those are things that I don’t mind the world seeing me go through.
The rest of the Total Divas season
CraveOnline: What can we expect for the rest of the season on Total Divas?
Brie Bella: You’re going to see Nikki’s injury and how it came about and when the doctors told her about surgery and that could be a career ending injury. With that, you realize the Bella Twins are probably never going to get back in the ring together again, which is really hard. Also, I’ll have to make a decision. Do I stay or do I go? Her and I will have a new line that will be coming out and you’ll see us put that together. There is something really fun that you’ll get to see. Bryan and I go on a trip to Sedona and we bring Renee Young, Dean Ambrose, my brother and his wife with us. The biggest part of this season is seeing Nikki and I getting a little taste of what our new chapters will be.
E!’s “Total Divas” airs on Tuesday, March 15th at 9 p.m./ET.
Photos by WWE.
Joshua Caudill is a writer for CraveOnline Sports, a surfing enthusiast, an avid basketball fan, a pro wrestling connoisseur and an expert on all things Patrick Swayze. You can follow him on Twitter @JoshuaCaudill85 or “like”CraveOnline Sports on Facebook.