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Everything you need to know before entering a pageant

So you've decided you want to enter a pageant? Congrats! You're starting a journey that will teach you so much about yourself and about the world. But before you strut that stage on competition night, there are a few things you should know (to maximize your slay, ofc).

Check your motives

Obviously, you want to win the crown. You wouldn't be competing in a pageant if you didn't! But while winning may be your goal, you shouldn't expect it. Yes, the judges get to decide who walks away with a victory, but you're the one who gets to choose if you walk away with valuable life experience. 

For example, starting your pageant journey with girls of the same age and similar interests will help you gain lifelong friends. Rehearsing for competition night will teach you how to commit to learning a new skill and persevere when the going gets tough.

There's a lot more to gain from competing in a pageant than just winning the title. When you're doing it for the right reasons, you won't be disappointed whether you win or lose.

Learn the phases of competition


Before you start prepping, you need to know what the phases of competition are. Most pageants are broken into four phases: interview, talent, runway and fitness.

Your interview will usually happen the morning of the competition and the panel of judges will ask you questions about yourself and your goals. This is the only phase of competition that happens in a private room. The other three phases typically happen onstage.

For the talent portion, you get to choose any act to perform on stage. If singing or dancing isn't your thing, you can also branch out into a monologue, or even an explosive science experiment like Miss America 2020 Camille Schrier!

The runway phase is basically a catwalk across the stage in an evening gown. The judges will be looking at how confidently you carry yourself and how proud you are to be onstage.

The fitness phase usually happens in groups, with you and a few other contestants completing a short dance workout set to music. This is part of the competition because the judges want to give the crown to someone who prioritizes staying healthy, can bring lively energy to everything they do and can be a good role model to other girls. 

Prep for the big day as much as you can

If you struggle with procrastination, trust, you'll want to work on that in the weeks leading up to a pageant. While you'll usually have a few rehearsals scheduled with the pageant's directors at the venue, continuing to practice at home in your free time will give you the best shot at winning.

You might be tempted to put off rehearsing your talent or practicing interview questions because of anxiety, but you'll only end up being a thousand times more anxious on competition night if you don't plan ahead. 

Preparation doesn't guarantee you'll win the crown, but if you give it your all, you can be confident on competition night that you did your absolute best. And no matter what the judges decide, no one can take that away from you.

Pick your competition wardrobe carefully


Everyone wants to look like a fairy tale princess on competition night, but don't forget to be practical. For example, if you find a beautiful dress for the runway phase of competition but can barely walk in it, it might not be the wisest choice. Remember, you're likely being judged on the grace of your onstage walk—not how gorg the outfit is.

And if you choose to perform dance as your talent, make sure your costume is comfy and flexible. You'll come off as wayyy more confident to the judges and the audience if you feel calm in your wardrobe instead of uncomfy. If you feel your best, chances are, you'll look your best, too! 

Ready for your model moment? CLICK HERE to enter our contest with Barbizon to win a trip to L.A., a dream photo shoot and a sweet shopping spree!

Top image: @elizabethpiereee
Slider image: @emmabroyles_


by Hana Tilksew | 5/8/2024