Nikki & Artem Have Officially Defined Their Relationship, & I'm Pumped

by Christy Piña
Neilson Barnard/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

After months of are they/aren't they speculation, Nikki Bella and Artem Chigvintsev made their relationship official and put a label on it. Dating rumors about Bella and Chigvintsev began in January 2019, when they reconnected following their stint as partners on Dancing With The Stars. Their reunion was featured on an episode of Total Bellas, and things between them seemed to heat up from there. Bella shut down dating rumors in February, saying they were "just friends," but by March, she confirmed they had started dating casually. Now, almost four months later, on the July 17 episode of The Bellas Podcast, Bella announced that she and Chigvintsev were taking the next step in their relationship.

"We're boyfriend and girlfriend," she said on the podcast. "We're in a relationship." There it is! The confirmation I've been waiting for since these two were first romantically linked. On the podcast, Bella also admitted that her feelings for Chigvintsev kind of scared her. "I felt myself falling for him a lot but then I felt like I was acting out in ways," she said. "I was avoiding it." And there's more.

They didn't just verbally confirm their relationship on The Bellas Podcast, Bella and Chigvintsev also released a video of the two of them dancing to Rita Ora's "Let Me Love You," and it is hot with a capital "H." When you think about it, these two met when they were dance partners on Dancing With The Stars in 2017, so the fact that they're making things officially official with a sensual dance makes a lot of sense.

Though Bella chose this particular bop for she and Chigvintsev's first dance as boyfriend and girlfriend, both of them explained why it meant so much to them, and their reasons are actually so sweet. "I'm the one that chose the song, and [it's] kind of my journey with Artem and dating," she said on the podcast. "This song really hit me hard. I just felt like, 'OK, I'm falling for this guy really fast.' But, not that I wanted to avoid it, but I just kept trying to push Artem away. I just wasn't ready for anything."

Chigvintsev agreed with Bella and opened up about how dance means so much to them because of how they met. "[The dance is] very personal," he said. "It's very special because of the song and the storyline. It sums up to us and sums up our story. It's very dear to both of our hearts. It's so emotional, it's crazy. It makes you feel a certain way."

For those who haven't really followed Bella and Chigvintsev's story, here's the tea. They were partners on DWTS Season 25, but were sent home on the seventh night. At the time, Bella was still dating ex-fiancé John Cena, so she and Chigvintsev were strictly friends. In a January 2019 episode of Total Bellas, the two went on a lunch date and caught up for the first time in years. But in February, Bella reportedly told Us that despite she them having "so much chemistry," they were "just friends."

During the Season 4 finale of Total Bellas in March, Bella confirmed they were casually dating and posted an adorable selfie of them to her Instagram to prove it. "There's been a lot of speculation about us … but I'm still dating [other people]," she said on the first episode of The Bellas Podcast in March. "We're having fun. He's showing me L.A." Over the next few months, Bella and Chigvintsev were seen all over each other's social media feeds, but Bella insisted they were keeping things casual and fun. On July 11, they made their red carpet debut at the 2019 Kids' Choice Sports Awards, and a week later, here we are, with the sexiest confirmation that their relationship is here to stay. I, for one, am thrilled, and can't wait to see what's ahead for Bella and Chigvintsev.