'Bachelor' Finalist Lauren Burnham Is 'Shaking Off the Haters' Ahead of Explosive Finale

The Bachelor's Arie Luyendyk Jr. has already warned fans that next week's finale will be the franchise's most dramatic yet

The Bachelor‘s Arie Luyendyk Jr. has already warned fans that next week’s finale will be the franchise’s most dramatic yet — but one of his final two picks, Lauren Burnham, isn’t fazed by the upcoming drama.

“Shakin’ off the haters,” Burnham, 26, captioned an Instagram of herself tossing her blonde waves in a belly-bearing crop top on Thursday.

While PEOPLE won’t reveal specific plot points so as not to spoil the upcoming drama, suffice it to say that after the two-part finale on Monday and Tuesday, Luyendyk Jr. will have a lot of explaining to do — especially after telling both women he loves them.

“I know people are going to be hard on [me],” Luyendyk Jr., 36, tells PEOPLE exclusively in this week’s issue. “I made a mistake. And I’m prepared for the backlash. But all I can say is I had to follow my heart.”

Of his two finalists, publicist Becca Kufrin, 27, and sales executive Burnham, the race car driver says they’re “very different”: Minnesota-based Kufrin is “outgoing,” while Burnham, who lives in Virginia Beach, Virginia, is more “reserved.”

“They’re both great in their own individual ways,” he adds.

Arie Luyendyk Jr. and Lauren BurnhamCredit: ABC
Arie Luyendyk Jr. and Becca KufrinCredit: ABC

One outspoken critic of the man of the hour? Former contestant Caroline Lunny, who openly called Luyendyk Jr. out on national television for “what he did” at the end of his season.

“This whole time, you’ve said that you are here because you are trying to find a wife,” she said during the Women Tell All reunion, which aired Sunday. “I know what you did, and I don’t know how you could do that. I just really don’t understand. But I really hope you found what you’re looking for.”

ABC/Paul Hebert

“I needed to say what I said. When somebody burns somebody you love, you want to have that moment where you get the last word in,” Lunny later told PEOPLE. “I don’t think Arie knows what he wants. I hope he can move past the glitz of being the Bachelor and take it seriously.”

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Plus, axed contestant Bekah Martinez has said of her ex’s final choice: “I don’t see him being with this person for the rest of his life.”

Paul Hebert/ABC

But the self-proclaimed “romantic” did find love on The Bachelor. And now, as his season finally draws to a close, he says he’s prepared to own up to his actions and explain his stunning behavior, even though that means addressing potential fallout from both the contestants — and the franchise’s millions of devoted viewers.

“[My decision] might not be the most popular,” he admits. “But for me it’s so worth it.”

Updated by Aurelie Corinthios
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