Natural Beauty Pageant Rules

Beauty pageants are usually associated with glitz, glamor, and everything out of this world. However, natural beauty pageants are those that focus on natural beauty and a well-rounded personality. Usually held for younger girls and teens, these beauty pageants make an attempt to bring out girls’ communication skills, their passion for a cause, and their natural selves. Some argue that such pageants are better for younger girls as it teaches them to be comfortable with their ‘real’ selves rather than putting up a show of someone they may not truly be. Moreover, their level of confidence increases, and they focus on developing their personality more than their beauty. In keeping with these thoughts, certain basic rules have been set for them. These have been discussed here.

Basic Rules of Natural Beauty Pageants

The reason the stress is on the word ‘basic’ is because some of the rules may change based on the pageant organizers. However, there are certain ground rules that are followed during most such beauty pageants. Let’s take a look at these rules.

➝ Photographs that are sent to the pageant for shortlisting should not be clicked with make up on. Moreover, touching up these photographs is not allowed. However, some pageants may specify the kind of photographs they are looking for, i.e. black and white or color photographs.

➝ As the name of the pageant suggests, the focus here is on natural beauty. As such, girls below a certain age (8-12 yrs) are not allowed to apply any make up. Older girls may use very little (say lip gloss and mascara) for the pageant. No fake teeth, spray tans, or fake hair may be used.

➝ In fact, even the dresses girls wear have to be simple and not glitzy or very fashionable. However, children are encouraged to pick clothing that speaks of their personal style. They are also encouraged to mix and match simple clothing to bring out their true personality.

➝ Most natural beauty pageants allow for the use of accessories such as sunglasses, hats, and scarves. Again, these may have been used by the child to represent her unique dressing style.

➝ The judgment is carried out in terms of the natural beauty of the contestant. As such, features such as the smile that reaches the eyes are focused upon. Forced smiles are a big no-no. Also, the poise and personality of the child are parameters for judgment.

➝ These pageants do not encourage parents to coach their children (above 4-6 years of age) beforehand because their aim is to allow children to be their natural, real selves. They do not expect coached or pre-decided responses to their questions. In short, parents’ involvement in the pageant should be limited to the basic procedures that are need to be completed to register for the pageant.

➝ If anything, children should be taught how to develop their communication skills, and should be aware of their wants and desires before going for a natural beauty pageant. Every child need not want to save the environment or the like. Let children develop their own vision; just ensure that as a parent, you have made them aware of this vision.

In these pageants, it is children who are confident, who have a good personality, and who have the ability to showcase their personality, who make it through. As mentioned earlier, these pageants are real confidence boosters, in that they allow children to work on being true to themselves, on embracing their natural beauty, and accepting it with grace. It also makes them less competitive for the wrong reasons. Most parents are known to pressurize their children into performing well enough to be the best. However, this pressure is lesser in a natural beauty pageant. As such, it is definitely a better choice, even if your child dreams of being Miss America some day. At the end of the day, it all boils down to a wonderful combination of beauty and brains, not just beauty!

Beauty Pageants Pros and Cons

Remember the film Miss Congeniality? Sandra Bullock, (detective Gracie Hart), the prototypical tomboyish woman (because she is an FBI agent), with abundant small, gray cells, goes totally bonkers when she has to participate in a beauty pageant for an FBI operation. She is absolutely mad about it, because according to her, these contests are a sham. Moreover, only beauties without brains participate in such contests was her mindset. Nevertheless, reel life apart, in real life, these pageants are perhaps not so bad as they are sometimes thought to be. Just like everything else, however, there might be some negativity attached to it.

Pros and Cons of Beauty Pageants

The Process

Good

First things first, the process through which you become fit and worthy enough to enter a pageant is an absolutely rigorous one and teaches you a lot. As the contestants progress towards the pageant and the crown, the whole experience is mesmerizing and can be life changing.

Bad

The process demands very hard work; leave alone the physical demands, such a contest takes a toil on your mental state as well. That can be worse than the physical stress.

Self-Confidence

Good

Presenting yourself flawlessly and gracefully in front of the others, is a fantastic booster for your self-confidence. Furthermore, looking good is another asset and habit you get into through such a contest.

Bad

It is possible that such contests may contribute to you becoming too superficial. You may give importance only to outer appearance rather than sensing the deeper meaning of a personality.

Lucrative

Good

A beauty pageant is not just about being rewarding for you as a person, but it is rewarding in the materialistic sense as well (who wouldn’t mind earning a few good bucks, eh!). Most of the time, pageant winners get cash prizes, a chance to travel, explore places, and earn scholarships too. This is in addition to the trophy or crown and ribbon.

Bad

Too much of traveling for the pageant results in financial and emotional stress on all family members. Earning a lot may contribute to increasing your ego as well, which is detrimental to your personality.

Achievements

Good

A pageant can help individuals become go-getters and achieve what they want. Consequently, those who win are brimming with confidence.

Bad

Those who are mentally not strong enough might not be able to bear the pain of losing and not achieving what they want. This can lead them to go in depression. Those who win might become snobbish and over-confident, paying no heed to others.

Intelligence

They say that your, but you never know what the judges have on their mind. But there are some who vehemently claim that the judges do test the intelligence of the contestants and there are activities where they can display their intelligence.

Good

Your intelligence and congeniality is tested in these contests; there are various activities where contestants can display their intelligence.

Bad

Many claim that not all pageants have judges who test the intelligence quotient of the candidates; consequently, this makes them feel like decked-up dolls rather than smart human beings.

Fame

Good

The winner or the top 5 or 10 contestants have a great chance to be role models for the ‘mere mortals’. Be it social service or excelling in their careers and academics, this is what they put across for others to follow.

Bad

There are many who might misuse this platform for all the wrong reasons and for their vested interest, rather than doing something for others.

If you intend to participate in such a contest, that’s great; avoid going overboard about it. There are some who can go to any extent to be the Miss. or Mr. Perfect and still lose everything. Moreover, the race to have that perfect body and face can result in eating disorders detrimental for an individual’s health.

These points should be seriously considered by those wanting to enter a beauty pageant. An individual should have a very strong reason and self determination to sail through. Only then it is worth a shot. This is totally relevant to what Oscar Wilde had said about beauty – “No object is so beautiful that, under certain conditions, it will not look ugly.”