'Bachelorette' Hannah Brown Responds to Backlash Over 'Contagious' Bikini Photo Caption

Hannah Brown is responding to criticism of her latest bikini photo after The Bachelorette alum was accused of making light of the coronavirus pandemic with her "contagious" caption. Showing off her tan and fit physique in a snap wearing a bright blue bathing suit Friday, Brown captioned her post, "What's more contagious than a smile."

Followers were quick to respond to the ABC leading lady's caption, with a large number of people writing that the coronavirus or COVID-19 were vastly more contagious than a smile, having infected 35,241 people in the United States as of Monday morning, with 473 people dying from the illness, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. But the Dancing With the Stars winner quickly added a note to the caption to clarify her intentions, writing, "Just trying to spread some love here rather than fear, not making light of the situation."

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Brown is currently self-isolating with ex Tyler Cameron at his home in Jupiter, Florida, where she has been since the coronavirus began to spread across the U.S. earlier this month. Cameron was Brown's runner-up on The Bachelorette, but expressed a desire to reunite with his former girlfriend in the After the Final Rose ceremony after her engagement with Jed Wyatt fell apart. Any romantic reunion at the time was temporary, however, with Cameron publicly dating model Gigi Hadid for nearly two months following the season finale.

Brown and Cameron reunited once again earlier this month when the Alabama native flew down to be by her ex's side at a celebration of life for the model's late mother, Andrea Cameron, who died of a brain aneurysm on Feb. 29.

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While the former couple has not publicly commented on the nature of their relationship, a source close to the pair told Us Weekly last week that they are "great friends [who] have a lot of fun together." A second insider added, "Tyler and Hannah are very much aware of the attention that's been on them recently. They think it's funny that people are so invested."

Photo credit: ABC/John Fleenor