Pageants, which model wouldn’t like to win one? Well, there are some who don’t really care for pageants but still, you have to agree, pageants are one of the best ways for models to establish themselves in the entertainment industry. Personalities such as Katy Perry, Demi Lovato, Halle Berry, Michelle Pfeiffer, Oprah Winfrey, Priyanka Chopra and Gal Gadot all started out as pageant queens before branching out into music and acting. This is proof that a beauty queen title can propel you to other heights and not just those in the modelling industry.
As glamorous as it may sound, preparing for a pageant isn’t as rosy as it seems. In between the endless hours spent training, shopping and all that goes into getting ready for a pageant, models always stop for a moment and wonder, am I really preparing properly? Well, fear not, here’s a list you can use as a checklist for your preparation.
I can’t stress this hard enough, Confidence is the name of the game. If you have nothing else, have confidence. Confidence is about the way you carry yourself, the way you walk, the way you talk, your posture. You need to own the space you’re in, own the moment. Make sure your back is straight and your chin is up when you’re walking. When you look at someone, a judge in this case, give them an intense look as if you’re trying to intimidate them. Note the as if, you don’t want to intimidate them, there’s a fine line. Anything that you do on stage should be intentional, whether it’s how you walk, talk, stand, everything. There’s no room for second guessing yourself. Even when you make a mistake, brush it off as if it was part of the act, if that’s impossible, just own it and act as if nothing can ruin the moment for you. When you speak, project your voice. Don’t put yourself in a position that you have to be asked to talk louder.
- Follow instructions
I know, I know, this seems to basic to be on the list but trust me, very many people flaunt clearly defined rules all the time in pageants and other competitions all the time. This is usually a self destructive move because you’ve eliminated yourself even before you started. If the organizers or judges have issued rules of engagement or any other kind of instructions, make sure to follow them to the latter. Treat these rules as the gospel and master them by heart. More often than not, this will be the first elimination criteria that the judges will use to do the first round of elimination.
- Create a budget
This is very critical that you do. Most models end up spending way beyond what they can afford for a pageant that they end up losing. Be wise about it. It could be very tempting to just go shopping randomly without clearly having what you need in mind, you end up buying things you don’t need or that won’t guarantee you a win. Think about all the facets of the competition and consider the weight of each, depending on the type of pageant. Consider the money you have available to you and carefully plan out which areas need more attention than others. You might find a model spending a lot on a Victoria’s secret swimsuit while they could have achieved the same result from a cheaper brand and redirected all that money in a more pertinent direction. Not that Victoria’s Secret shouldn’t be bought, that’s just an example. The most critical area to consider is your training. If you don’t have any training and aren’t very good on the runway, I’d suggest you channel some finances towards that.
- Create a plan of action
It wouldn’t be a proper preparation without a proper plan. You need to consider every aspect that will go into preparing for the competition then structure them into a plan in order of importance. Add deadlines to all the steps of your plan. This will help you stay on top of your game all the time and to not forget anything in the course of preparation. In the days leading up to the pageant, in the heat of the moment, it’s very easy to forget things that you made mental notes about but listing them down into an actionable plan deals with this problem.
Pageants have that nasty Q&A section. Some are lucky and are asked general knowledge questions while others are unfortunate to be asked more specific questions. It’s best to do your research. Depending on the niche of that pageant, you might want to do a lot of research in that area. Look at the questions that models were asked in previous years in the same and different pageants. It will save you the embarrassment of having that clueless look on stage when you don’t have an answer. Even when you don’t have an answer, don’t stay silent because that’s an admission of defeat. The best way to approach such a situation would be to politely deflect the question or twist and change it all together and answer the new version. For example, “What’s the name of the outgoing miss universe?” “I’ve not yet gotten around to mastering her name, however, I know the names of the previous two winners…” Then you go ahead and answer them. Or something like, “I’m not always one who is good with names, however, I know that she is…” Then you go on and list something that you know about the winner. Take note that this is a cold approach and will greatly depend on the judges. Some will be impressed by the way you deflect it, some will not be impressed that you dodged the question. Best way to avoid such a situation is to do your homework before the fateful day.
It goes without saying that you have to make sure that you’re on top of your game. The most important thing to remember is to train in the shoes you’ll use during the competition. You don’t want to buy shoes under a week before the competition. You need to train in them at least 10 times before you wear them on the runway. Otherwise, you might be on the runway and break a heel and find yourself on the ground. Your walk is also very important. I believe this is pretty self explanatory. Basically train in every facet that will be involved in the competition.
- Enjoy yourself
Above all else, always remember that it’s not that serious. It’s not a life or death type of situation. Enjoy the process. Have fun and be a good sport. Whether or not you win, this will definitely be an experience to remember. I’m assuming you’d like to remember it in a good light.