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Beauty with Expectations: Beauty Pageants

The Philippines is known to be very competitive in beauty pageants, with 15 crowns won by Filipinas, our country is 2nd in ranking when it comes to the most crowned beauty queens. (Baclig, 2020) Some children would even say they want to join beauty contests and go for the gold. However, amidst the celebration of bringing home the bacon, winning the crown, and bringing the pride of the country, there is a lot of pressure being felt by beauty queens and the pressure of creating a beauty standard in society.

How can one get the crown?

The goal of beauty contestants is to be the queen, to be able to have the sash and the title. Beauty pageants are thought to be all about lavish gowns, stunning faces, extraordinary answers, and different advocacies to touch the hearts of many. However, there are requirements in order to join such contests, they must be at 18-25 years of age, they must be a citizen of their country, single, and at least 5’5 ft tall (Reporter BT, 2009), they should not have a flabby stomach or be fat in general. Aside from the physical aspects, another qualification is that being confident, intelligent and with personality can win people’s hearts and can secure a slot for the crown.

The ugly truth of beauty pageants.

Beauty pageants have been popular across the world and it triggered a surge as well, becoming an easy plot on how society views beauty. However, there are pressures that can affect a woman such as when their beauty does not fit the criteria of society (Vasudev,2013). Despite having benefits, the amount of pressure these queens get is too much. William Adams stated that many psychological experts found that beauty pageants can lead to mental issues in the participants, the pressure of looking beautiful can cause anxiety and even depression. Aside from it can cause eating disorders and/or body dysmorphia, because believe it or not most pageants focus on beauty making the participants spend a huge amount of their time trying to keep themselves beautiful. (2021) They all set the standards high that women can have low self-esteem, some feel that whenever they did not bring home the bacon, as well as making a mistake, is that people can embed on them for life. (Ng, 2021)

The future of beauty pageants

Nowadays, the rules drastically changed and it became more friendly for women to join. In the recent miss universe post, there is no height requirement needed and anyone can join. Before, girls with extra piercings and tattoos were prohibited. Now they are lenient with the appearance, although there are still lapses. In the time it can change, also they are also doing their best to be careful with the mental well-being of the pageants as one contestant who has a mental health issue even joined making it her advocacy that anyone can join.



Baclig, C. E. (2020, December 14). PH: Second most-crowned country in international beauty pageants. INQUIRER.Net.

Everhart, A. (2011). Entertaining a false reality: A social comparison examination of beauty pageant participation and the effect on body dissatisfaction, depression, and self-esteem. West Virginia University. Published.

​how beauty pageants can affect self esteem | Dr. Adams plastic surgery. (n.d.). WILLIAM P. ADAMS JR., MD PLASTIC SURGERY. Retrieved August 23, 2021, from

Miss universe PH removes height requirement for 2021. (2021). Cnn.

Ng, D. (2020, December 22). After years of silence, the ugly truth behind beauty contests in philippines. CNA.

Reporter, B. T. (2009, December 3). What it takes to become a beauty queen. The New Times | Rwanda.

Vasudev, S. (2013, October 3). The ugly pressure on beautiful women. Mint.

Wonderlich, A. L., Ackard, D. M., & Henderson, J. B. (2005). Childhood beauty pageant contestants: Associations with adult disordered eating and mental health. Eating Disorders, 13(3), 291–301.


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