'Bachelor' Contestant Lauren B. Engagement Ring On ... Winner Winner?

1/27/2016 12:40 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF


'Bachelor' favorite Lauren Bushnell looks like a taken woman, judging from the ring on her finger, but there's less here than meets the eye. 

The photo surfaced Tuesday -- Lauren wearing what looks like an engagement ring -- and it caused a ****storm thanks to her friend who posted the pic on Instagram.

Could it be ... Ben not only picked her but popped the question?  


The photo was taken in September, 2 months BEFORE Ben picked the woman of his dreams. There's no way she was married during the competition, or even engaged, because it would mean the show was a sham and that would be a PR disaster for producers. 

So the takeaway is this ... a rose by any other name may be a rose, but a ring on the left ring finger is not always an engagement ring.