For a show that has restrictions against having sex, kissing, and even masturbating, a whole lot of hanky-panky went down on Too Hot To Handle. Many of the contestants on the Netflix reality series didn't seem to care too much about the show's $100,000 cash prize, which lost money every time someone shared a kiss (or more). However, some contestants didn't break any rules at all on the show, like Nicole, whose quotes about the hookups on Too Hot To Handle make it clear how frustrating it was to lose money when others couldn't keep it in their pants.
Warning: Spoilers for Too Hot To Handle Season 1 follow. Throughout their time at the no-sex retreat, Nicole and her fellow contestants had no idea exactly how the prize money was going to be awarded. Would the people who ended up in relationships take it all? Would it go to whoever abided by the rules? Or, would they all have to battle it out in some kind of sexy challenge at the very end? What was clear to everyone, however, was that the moment someone broke a rule, a portion of that money would be taken away.
The show, which premiered on Netflix on April 17, had no problem putting its horny rule-breakers on blast. After every steamy — but illegal — intimate moment, an omniscient robot named Lana gathered all the contestants to let them know about the transgression... and how much it was going to cost them.
"It was very annoying," Nicole tells Elite Daily. "I think some people just weren't really too considerate, and being such a considerate person myself, I just didn't really see how people could act like that."
However, while the revelations about the rule-breakers inspired some pretty heated finger-pointing and revenge plots (see: Francesca and Haley's make-out session), Nicole kept her cool.
"I tried to keep as composed as possible, because I can be quite hot-headed and I'm very honest about what I say," she admits. Putting herself back in her own shoes as her villa-mates were losing thousands of dollars with every kiss, she explains: "I'm just really trying to kind of sit back and think, 'OK, well, what happens if this couple ended up getting married and this is their opportunity to grow their relationship a bit more?'"
It's not like Nicole wanted this dry spell for herself. When she arrived to film Too Hot To Handle at an idyllic villa in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, she truly had no idea what the rules of the show were going to be.
"We had absolutely no hints at all, so we were ready to just party, and kiss loads of people," she says. "And then when Lana dropped our bombshell, I mean, you can see it even on camera, all of our faces, we were just so shocked. I'll never forget everyone's hearts just dropped ... I kind of thought, 'OK, I may as well just leave now because this is not the kind of show that I want to be on.'"
Of course, Nicole ended up not only sticking it out, but actually sticking to the rules of the show. "I had to just think to myself, 'There's a reason that the production thinks that I will be best suited to a situation like this, so I just need to embrace it.'"
If you've seen the season finale, you know what happens with the group's money, but it seems like the real prize was the lessons they learned along the way. "We were more all about the sexual aspect and then, finding this emotional connection with other people," Nicole says. "I don't think any of us really realized the importance of it."