According to Wikipedia, a beauty pageant or beauty contest is a competition that mainly focuses on the physical beauty of its contestants. The contests often incorporate personality, talent, and answers to judges’ questions as criteria.
The phrase almost invariably refers only to contests for women and girls; similar events for men or boys are named otherwise and, most likely deal with body physique. Winners of beauty contests are called beauty queens.
The first modern pageant was staged by P. T. Barnum in 1854, but his beauty contest was closed down by public protest. He previously also held dog, baby, and bird beauty contests.
Modern beauty pageants as we know them today are traceable to the Miss America Beauty Pageant, which was first held in Atlantic City in 1921 under the title “Inter-city beauty contest”.
Since then, beauty pageants have generally gained acceptance in most societies leading to the emergence of several local, national and international pageants across the world.
In this capacity, the foremost international pageants are the “Miss World Competition founded by Eric Morley in 1951, Miss Universe founded in 1952, Miss International founded in 1960 and Miss Earth founded in 2001 with environmental awareness as its main concern. These are considered the Grand Slam pageants—the four largest and most famous international beauty contests.
Despite the numerous types of pageants that we have today, the secrets to winning any, of them remains the same. The principles required to win a local pageant are the same for an international pageant.
This means that every aspiring beauty queen must be well groomed and acquainted with these winning principles that have been applied by past and present title holders to achieve their dreams. These principles are the basics required and demanded by both audience and judges alike by any “head’ that would dare to wear the “crown”.
The essence of most beauty pageants is to celebrate the totality of the beauty of a woman. This however goes beyond looks to project such qualities as; intelligence, confidence, poise, charity, charm among others.
Presently, titleholders of local, national or international beauty pageants are involved in one form of social work or the other. The majority of beauty queens use their offices to get involved with NGOs or individually established pet projects during the course of their reign. For some queens these projects span the period of their reign and for others it continues even after.