Unbothered! Nikki Bella defended wearing the same dress she bought for her wedding to ex-fiancé John Cena to marry her husband, Artem Chigvintsev

“I went back and forth with that decision,” the Total Bellas star, 39, told Us Weekly about her decision to wear the gown for her August 2022 destination wedding to Artem, 40, in Paris, France. “For me, it [reflects] how I stand as a strong woman, I was like wait, why should I not wear what I love? Because of my past? It just didn’t make sense to me.”

Nikki Bella and Artem Chigvintsev's Sweet Son Matteo Is Everything! See His Baby Photo Album
Courtesy of Nikki Bella/Instagram

While former WWE diva assured that she would have picked out a different dress if Artem had “an issue with it,” the Dancing With the Stars pro was “cool with it” and viewed it as simply a “material thing.”

“He probably wanted me to save money but then didn’t realize I bought a few other dresses after,” the Incomparable author quipped after explaining that the dress gave her a sense of “empowerment.”

Despite never making it down the aisle with John, 45, whom she split from in July 2018 after six years together, Nikki admitted she had a big “moment” with her wedding dress and “dreamed” of wearing it someday. 

Luckily, Artem acknowledged that he didn’t think it was “that big of a deal” and “dismissed” the question from the beginning, which made him all the more surprised about the strong reaction from fans. 

“I think [if there’s] an issue with it, they’re bringing some other energy into our happiness,” the Russia native said. “Why would we want to even waste time talking about it … It did not bother me at all.”

Nikki and Artem’s wedding came two years after they welcomed their son, Matteo, in July 2020. While they initially planned to walk down the aisle near their Napa Valley, California, home, the event kept getting delayed amid the coronavirus pandemic. They made a last-minute decision to have a destination wedding in Paris. 

The newlyweds first met as partners on DWTS in 2017, while Nikki was still engaged to the Suicide Squad actor, who has since moved on as well. He married wife Shay Shariatzadeh in October 2020. 

Following Nikki and John’s split, she and Artem started dating in January 2019. They announced their engagement the following year in January before welcoming Matteo in July 2020. 


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Tyler Cowan