A Galveston native will serve as the host of a reality dating show, coming full circle from her humble beginnings on the island.
Arica Angelo began her career as a dating coach back in 2008, posting videos on YouTube. She still has that channel, but her reach has grown considerably and now has a website offering courses ranging from how to get a date to setting boundaries and being an emotional warrior. Her years of work have paid off with her own Bravo TV show “Love Without Borders.”
“It has really come full circle for me,” Angelo said. “I fell in love with writing in high school and took a keyboard class, which I hated, but that came in handy when my career started with a blog.”
Following high school, Angelo studied interior design at the Art Institute in Houston. She moved to Los Angeles and dabbled in marketing and real estate, while trying to make a name for herself.
“I had to work a lot of odd jobs to get to this point,” Angelo said. “Making it in L.A. is hard, and the rent is not cheap.”
In 2008, after visiting with counselors, healers and therapists, Angelo had an epiphany, she said.
“I was on my own journey and realized that if I could heal me, I could help others,” Angelo said. “I read every self-help book I could and did constant research on boundaries and self-worth, and that eventually led into giving relationship advice.”
Angelo started her website, that originated as a blog in 2008, eventually leading to her writing books.
“I always loved being in front of the camera and YouTube and online courses were the way to make it happen,” Angelo said.
Angelo moved to England that year, staying until 2010, when she returned to Los Angeles.
“I realized that if I position myself enough in L.A. and stay long enough, a door will open,” Angelo said.
Angelo signed four contracts for TV shows, which eventually fell through.
“It was an emotional roller coaster and I was incredibly disheartened,” Angelo said.
Angelo left Los Angeles and lived in Thailand in 2018, before moving to Bali, Indonesia in 2020, just as the COVID-19 pandemic began.
“While I was in Bali, another show came knocking,” Angelo said. “They had gone to my YouTube and said I would be perfect for the show, but I had heard that before.
“I informed them that I was in Bali, and they loved that, as the concept for the show was people traveling to other countries looking for love.”
“Love Without Borders” is a show taking five American singles to different locations to look for love. The singles have to say goodbye to the life they know to potentially find the love of their life. As the host, Angelo spoke to the singles about what they wanted and what was not working for them in their previous relationships.
“We have a network of matchmakers in other countries and we decide which people would be good matches based on what they want and their personalities,” Angelo said. “We told the singles that they need to be packed and ready to go, but they did not know where they were going until they arrived at the airport.”
On the show, singles are immersed in different cultures and languages, living with their match, testing their compatibility.
Angelo has applied her learning to her own life and relationships.
“I had to realize my own shortcomings in my journey,” Angelo said. “I have a constant mirror on myself and look at where I can improve in my own relationship.
“It is magical to find joy but we must find the tools to deal with our own shortcomings.”
Angelo also provided her own expertise for singles who may be struggling finding a good match.
“You have to be honest with yourself about what you want in a relationship, what you need and what you bring to the table,” Angelo said. “You have to ask yourself, ‘what is holding me back?’ and go outside of yourself.
“The number-one complaint I hear is that people have nobody to meet or match with on dating apps. You have to work on yourself and you will see a paradigm shift.”
For those with social anxiety, Angelo also has a word of advice.
“You have to confront your fears,” Angelo said. “Fortune favors the bold. Ask yourself, ‘how can I help myself navigate this?’”
During her time at Ball High School, Angelo served on the student council as a corresponding secretary, where she honed her writing. She also was on the homecoming court and named “best all-around” by her classmates.
Angelo carries the lessons she learned with her each day and hopes to be an example for children on the island.
“When I was growing up, I felt very mediocre about myself and thought the stories we would hear from motivational speakers who made it were only for ‘the special ones,’” Angelo said. “Never give up on your dreams. Continue on the course because dreams can really come true if you stay at it.”
“Love Without Borders” premieres Nov. 30 at 8 p.m. on the Bravo Network and streaming on Peacock the next day.
Angelo can be found on YouTube at Arica Angelo.