Bursting the Myth - Are beauty pageants really objectifying women?

24 Mar 2020 | Priya Bhardwaj

Beauty pageants, celebrated annually in various formats, celebrate the essence of womanhood and everything that she embodies. The negated idea of beauty pageants is taking up space in the list of critics and feminists because of the series of competitions that are assumed to be the reason for promoting self-criticism and self-hatred among the young vying women. With pageant organizing contests like the swimsuit competition, that keeps the beauty and physical appearance as one of the winning factors, the womenazis argue that it demands girls to measure their worth with their looks and even obliges them to starve up to an extent that harms their bodies.

So, are these beauty pageants viewing girls through a biased glass of beauty that compels them to be physically beautiful? Are these pageants really a form of pseudo women empowerment? Are these pageants subconsciously making the girls believe that they have to fit into the winning criteria of the competition to be perfect?


Bursting the Myth - Are beauty pageants really objectifying women?


Beauty pageants across the world, as they say, are intended to empower women, making them strong and independent individuals in this patriarchal society. The final crowning moment is preceded by a series of competitions, that indeed require women to meet a few beauty standards, but at last, the titled queen is the one who is an amalgamation of beauty with brains. Now, the main reason why these pageants include contests like swimsuit competition and evening gown competition is that they aim to promote a healthy body environment.

Feminazis pointlessly arguing that the swimsuit competition is a form of sexual harassment for these young ladies is the biggest myth because boasting their fitness is in no way advertising sexualism. Not only beauty pageants keep fitness and health as the criteria to win but also the sports and entertainment industries count on these traits.


Miss Universe 2019 winner Zozibini Tunzi


Feminism, as it has been a rebellious subject for centuries, aims to equalize the standard of women as that of men, giving them the right to make decisions hence presenting them as the independent individuals of the society by eradicating toxic ideologies of patriarchy and male chauvinism. Referencing the core idea of feminism, beauty pageants promote the equality standards among men and women as male pageants like Mister World and Mister International also have swimwear competition. Nobody puts allegations that these contests as a promoter of sexual harassment against men and this clearly demonstrates the hypocrisy that feminazis and critics hold within themselves.


Miss World 2019 Toni-Ann Singh


Needless to say, the titles like 'Beauty with a Purpose' and 'Confidently Beautiful' justify the whole concept of the competitions. Just like every competition has some ground rules, beauty contests also have a few of them that restrict the requirement of minimum height and weight. Each time a woman is crowned as a winner of international competition, carrying the title with pride and honor, she becomes an inspiration to thousands of women of all ages. All the respect, that she had been striving for is earned when she becomes a grandeur of her country, of her people, of her family and all these achievements remark the biggest victory of her life. These competitions inculcate the values of responsibility, confidence, compassion, and sportsmanship. The unbiased judgment of beauty pageants has lately been evident with the crowning of unconventional beauties like Miss Universe 2019 Zozibini Tunzi and Miss World 2019 Toni-Ann Singh last year.