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


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.


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.



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.


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.



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.


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.



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


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.


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.


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


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.



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.


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.”

Beauty Pageant Hairstyles for Kids

Beauty pageants are a long-held tradition not just among women, but even among little kids. There is a growing trend of many parents entering their little girls in beauty pageants. And of course, you want your little princess to look her best for the pageant, so besides the dress, one key element in any pageant is the hairstyle, and you don’t even have to be a celebrity hairstylist to fashion a princess worthy hairdo for your future pageant queen. Whether you are entering your child in a local, state, or national beauty pageant, there are a lot of hairstyles options for kids.

When choosing pageant hairstyles for kids, it’s important to choose one that highlights and accentuates the natural features, and does not make them look too grown up. You definitely will want to avoid any garish hair colors and styles as that will only make her look like she is trying too hard. Rather than having her carry around a very adult hairstyle, choose an age appropriate hairstyle that highlights her best features.

Some Ideas

Though it is always better to keep the hairstyle simple, there is nothing wrong in, wanting to go for hairstyles that are a little more elaborate than the one’s she normally goes in for. Another important point to remember is leaving enough room in whatever hairstyle you choose for the tiara. Here are some easy to do hairstyles for little girls:

Cascading Curls: This hairstyle is ideal as a pageant hairstyle for medium hair. Curls can accentuate the softness and innocence of the kid while still giving her a formal look. To create this look, all you need is a curling iron and some mousse or hairspray. But before you begin, it is important to know how to curl hair with a curling iron. Once you wash the hair and towel dry it, while it is still damp, apply a little mousse and comb out her hair properly and separate it into sections. Take an inch of hair and wrap it around the curling iron and hold for 15 to 20 seconds and then release, then continue this step all around. You can leave her hair down, or dress it up with different hair accessories. This makes for very cute pageant hairstyles for curly hair.

Knots and Braids: Another great idea for beauty pageant hairstyles is a knot or braid. Start by straightening her hair with a hair straightener, and once you have finished that, twist the front part of her hair into knots so that they frame the face. Use bobby pins to secure and use sparkle barrettes to create an evening look, as this gives the knots a look of a headband around her head. Another option is braiding her hair all across instead of the knots, so for this, use a spray on the front section (the crown) to make it more puffy. This hairstyle is one of the ideal pageant hairstyles for short hair.

French Updo: If you do not want the hassle of changing hairstyles in between, and want to make sure that the hairstyle stays on for the entire event, the best choice is an updo hairstyle. Such an updo hairstyle can bring out the elegance in a little girl. To create the look, start by straightening her hair using a hair straightener. Once you have done that, brush her hair and make a side parting. Then, take her hair, secure it in a ponytail, twist it around, and secure with bobby pins, but make sure that the hair is not frizzy. Also, keep a comb or brush with you to repair the damage if need be.

In Between Styles: If you do not want to leave her hair loose, nor do you want them to be tied up in an updo, then there is another choice of in between hairstyles that can be opted for little girls. To create this look, wash her hair, towel dry it, and then comb it properly. Then, pull back the top portion of her hair in a ponytail with the help of a ponytail holder. Next, take a curling iron and make curls on the back portion of her hair. Don’t forget to curl the bangs or wisps you pull out to hang freely against the sides. You can use hair accessories to make it look more attractive.

You can following the aforementioned ideas that might prove beneficial, or create some of your own by using them. It’s very important to take proper hair care and to practice the hairstyle you choose beforehand. You should never try a hairstyle on the day of the event as it will most likely result in a disaster. But most importantly, the hairstyle that you choose should be one that will highlight the natural beauty of the little girl.

Pageant Hairstyles for Short Hair

For any contestant taking part in beauty contest, her hair is her crowning glory. Usually, most girls participating in a pageant have long hair, but now, times are changing. Though most people believe that only long hairstyles look feminine and versatile, it is not so, as even short ones look great, and definitely have an edge over the others. Women with short hairstyles aren’t afraid to be unique, and don’t believe in playing it safe. There are tons of pageant hairstyles for short hair, which look classy and glamorous.

In a pageant, each of us wants to look our best. So, besides choosing the right dress, shoes, and accessories, it is crucial to have a great hairstyle. Whatever style you choose for your hair, has a direct impact on your look. The right haircut ideas can accentuate your features and help you achieve a particular look. Selecting one much before the pageant is of utmost importance, as experimenting with a look on the final night can result in a disaster. So, it’s best that you select one of the best short styles that suits you, and practice it so that you do not have any problem on the D-day.


Slicked Look: A sexy, slicked back style is a perfect idea for short hair. The best part is, that it is extremely easy to do, and does not require a lot of hair care. Start by wetting your hair, and then towel dry it. Then, while it is still damp, brush it in the desired style. The style depends on what suits you, for example, you can part it in the middle, part it in the side, create a zigzag parting, or even style it all the way back without a parting. After that, rub a handful of mousse on your palms, and apply it on your hair carefully. Make sure you smooth the mousse on every strand of your hair to get that perfect slicked look. This also looks great for medium hair.

Wavy Bob: A bob is usually considered a very popular hairdo for short hair, especially for round faces. If you have a bob cut, and think that you cannot do anything to style it, it is not so, as a bob can also be styled to look great. A wavy bob is one of the most popular hairdos, and can be an ideal hairstyle for pageants, especially for curly hair. For creating this look, all you need is a curling iron and mousse. But, before you start, be sure to know how to curl hair with a curling iron. After you wash and condition your hair, towel dry it; and while it is still damp, apply mousse. To make it easier, separate your hair into sections. Take an inch of hair, and put it in the curling iron. Hold for 15 to 20 seconds, and then release. Continue this step all around your head. Use hairspray to make sure that the style stays for the entire night.

Low Bun: If you have short hair, but which is long enough to be pulled into a low ponytail, then one of the other options is a low bun. This is perfect if you have short hair, but still want a sophisticated updo hairstyle. To create this look, start by straightening your hair using a hair straightener. Start by brushing your hair and creating a side parting. Once you have made the parting, take your hair, and secure it into a ponytail with a rubber band. Twist the hair around the ponytail, and secure with bobby pins. Make sure that the hair does not look frizzy. Apply mousse or hairspray for the hairdo to stay. You can use different hair accessories to complete the look.

When it comes to selecting beauty pageant hairstyles for little girls, it is best if you let them accentuate their natural beauty, and choose styles that are not over the top; as not only will it look too much, but it will also be very uncomfortable. Also, for girls, it’s crucial to make sure that the hairstyles remain for the entire night. So, if you feel that you have straight hair, and the waves won’t stay for the entire night, then do not opt for the wavy look. But the most important consideration is that the hairdo should reflect their personality and style. So, go ahead and select a style that will highlight your femininity and beauty!

Pageant Hairstyles for Curly Hair

Curly hair is considered to be the best option when it comes to hairstyling, specially for a beauty pageant. You can experiment with this type of hair and create fascinating hairstyles. Pageant hairstyles demand elegance and beauty.

When it comes to curly hair, the options become more varied. You can really customize your look and play up with your ringlets. Decorating your hair with unique accessories can make a simple hairstyle look glamorous. However, loose ringlets are always preferred to tight curls.

Grecian Updo: This traditional hair style is so popular that it is still one of the most preferred hairstyle used in beauty pageants. To make this hairstyle, take your hair up and twist it loosely. Put bobby pins to hold it in place. You can decorate your hair by tying two ribbons around it. This hairstyle gives you a sophisticated and feminine look.

Romantic Updo: This is one updo which look better on loose ringlets rather than tight curls. To make this hairstyle, comb your hair neatly and part them into small sections. Then, one by one pull each section of hair towards your crown and secure it there with the help of bobby pins leaving the remaining curls flowing downwards giving it a cascading effect. After pinning up all the sections, set the pinned up hair with the help of a loose hold spray so that it looks neat for a long period of time. Decorate it with hair accessories and small butterfly pins.

French Braiding: Many girls are fond of tying their hair in a French plait. It gives them a feminine and pleasant look. Divide the front section of your hair equally and braid them. Secure them behind using bobby pins. Then make a neat French plait. Decorate the braided hair with small butterfly or studded hair accessories. You can tie your French plait with a ribbon. This is the cutest hairstyle as it gives you an innocent, yet elegant look.

Remember to secure your hair properly with bands or bobby pins during the event, so that your hairstyle does not open out. Use a good quality hairspray to keep your hair in place, and be confident in whatever hairstyle you choose.

Beauty Pageants: Good, Bad or Plain Ugly?

Thereafter, there doesn’t seem to be many records of what way beauty pageants went. Beauty was always appreciated, in every culture, in every country and continent, in every era. But formal, organized beauty pageants – maybe not.

The tradition came to America in 1921 when the hoteliers of Atlantic City decide to stage a “pageant” to entice summer tourists to stay in town past Labor Day. The fall festival included a “National Beauty Tournament” on the beach to select “the most beautiful bathing beauty in America”.

Local newsman, Herb Test, created history by offering to title of “Miss America” to the girl who wins. Out of the eight competitors for the title, Ms. Margaret Gorman, who represented the nation’s capital as Miss Washington D.C., was declared the beauty queen, winning the first Miss America title. It became an annual event after that. All sorts of landmarks started appearing. For instance, in 1923, Mary Katherine Campbell became the only woman to win the Miss America title two years in a row. By 1923, the number of contestants swelled to 70, and they would converge in Atlantic City to compete for the crown. The contest was discontinued between 1929 and 1932, because the great Depression had started eating into the US economy during this period. In 1932, it was held, but without much fanfare, as Dorothy Hann, a diminutive 5’2″ woman won the Miss America title.

But thereafter the contest was dogged by controversies. First, the contest, even after it was revived, came under a new management as The Variety Showman’s Jubilee. Then the winner, 15-year-old Marian Bergeron won the crown. Later, when her age was discovered, she was disqualified but the crown had already been stolen from the Queen’s hotel where she was staying. The event was a financial failure, but the one good thing that happened that for the first time, the beauty queen was crowned in an evening gown rather than in a swimsuit.

It was only in 1935 that the pageant was revived under Lenora Slaughter, who felt, that the event could be made profitable. By this time, the nation was in the grips of Hollywood fever and it was thought appropriate that the winners should be offered Hollywood screen tests. Some ladies actually did make it through that road, one of them being Dorothy Lamour (1935), who went on to co-star in Road. (Just how do women qualify to be good actress because they are beautiful, is anybody’s guess). It was only in 1938 that a talent competition became mandatory for the pageant. Another attempt at intellectualizing the whole show was a brilliant move on the part of Slaughter, when she decided to offer a college scholarship to the winner, a whopping sum of US $ 5000. Given that this was the period in American history when the returning GIs were uppermost on everyone’s mind, and providing opportunity to them, the national goal, the task was daunting, but Slaughter did not give up. As a result, in 1945, Miss New York, Bess Myerson won the first of these scholarships. She also made history of another sort, to be the first Jewish woman to be named Miss America. Ironically, this was about the time Hitler surrendered and millions of Jews around the globe got respite.

In 1948, another piece of history was made, when the Miss America director, Lenora Slaughter announced that henceforth the winners will be crowned in evening gowns only. The media was very upset but she went ahead anyway, and finally, the winner, Miss Minnesota, was crowned in a gown with a lineup of swimsuits behind her. The runner-up was crowned in a swimsuit, nonetheless.

By now, it was time to take the contest out of America, or at least, allow others to participate. So the Miss World Pageant took birth in 1951 with the slogan, Beauty with a Purpose. This pageant was held as a part of the Festival of Britain. The contest was allied to a number of charities, across the globe and soon, beauty pageants were not only about beauty, but also about brains, business, finance and even show business. This time around, the winner was Miss Sweden, Kiki Hakonson. The very next year saw the birth of the Miss Universe-Miss USA contest, together held in Long Beach, California. Among the twenty-nine international contestants this time, the first winner was Finland’s Armi Kussela.

In Great Britain, the concept of a beauty pageant started only in 1945, as a “Bathing Beauty Queen” contest held in Morecambe, organized by the local Council in partnership with the Sunday Dispatch. It later went on to become Miss Great Britain. The award money was 7 guineas and a basket of fruit, and of course, the ego trip was a perk. In 1946, the prize money increased to Pound Sterling 100 and then to 1000 in the sixties. The contests got increasingly popular and by 1949, almost 165,000 people were watching it. The formats were the same, the judges looked for a happy, friendly, healthy British beauty. Mothers would enter their daughter’s names without telling them, and about 20 such innocent young ladies were paraded every year.

Very soon it ceased to be a holiday entertainment, largely because the British tradition of seaside holidays was changing, and also the whole meaning of parading the girls was being questioned. By the eighties most of these contest were closing down, at least from their swimming pool sites.

Then came the golden age of media events, sponsorships, event management companies and of course, enhanced beauties. Women were still being paraded, men were still watching with voyeuristic delight, marking each of them for the size of their hips, breasts and waist (sometimes giving a stray thought to that unnecessary appendage called a talent contest), and grading women in the eyes of the world. Women were happily judging themselves by these very yardsticks.

Last known, when man was successful in sending machines to the moon, women were still worrying whether their bust size is right by international (men’s) standards, or their bottom resembled a pear or apple. No amount of striding, over the last 90 years has changed the face of beauty pageants, as they are still flesh markets, exhibiting willing bodies, the only difference between then and now is that there used to be small sums of money involved earlier, now it is millions of dollars, corporate identities and brand strategies, but still the bust size is what matters!!!!