Beauty pageants amidst the pandemic: Time for a ‘new normal’ winner?
(First of two parts) In the past several days, some readers have asked us about the new antiviral drug molnupiravir, and how it…

Beauty pageants amidst the pandemic: Time for a ‘new normal’ winner?

The ongoing pandemic has, literally, changed the norms of our daily lives. Reinvention is key to stay “afloat,” aside from keeping a positive mindset despite the looming uncertainties as we cant get a grasp on when can we regain our normalcy. No, it’s not happening anytime soon. No one can really tell when this will end.

Aside from basketball and boxing, Filipinos are relating to beauty pageants as a personal, important life event. It is most women’s childhood dream, and a mother’s wish for their daughters.

Ms. Siargao – Michele Angela Navarro Okol

Winning in a beauty pageant is like a confirmation of one’s beauty (with a purpose) and intelligence. It gives one a sense of pride for having the honor to represent the country in the global arena.

But more than the klieg lights and the glam, pageants are organized to empower women (repeat: women, meaning all in general): from building up their confidence to creating opportunities to evolve and grow.

Beauty Pageants pandemic
Ms. Marinduque – Simon Nadine Bornilla

It is a welcoming and encouraging environment meant to push women to success. After all, a confident and successful woman has the power to make real change to those around her, to her local community, even to a global audience.

At this time when the pandemic still looms around and pushed us back to the simplest, most basic of things, where many have to fare on our own to survive, is it also time for a new normal winner for beauty pageants?

If beauty pageant judges will take a cue from the rise of social media bloggers-slashed-influencers, some are completely outside the usual stereo type of “star material” but are famous because people are not intimated by their presence. They are individuals whom people from all walks of life can completely relate to.

Beauty Pageants pandemic
Ms. San Juan – Rousanne Marie Bernos

Sans the look and figure, people are more focused on what they say, their message and extend their support, in the good and bad of times, all the way.

Although yes, beauty pageants are different because they are compelled to implement standards, but may the judges look beyond the walk, face and whistle-bait figures in swimsuit and evening gown. May they dig more on the passion to serve, what’s inside their hearts and listen, closely, to their voices.

The challenge, then, is not only among the candidates but also on the judges.

As we are in a constantly a-changing (not to say depressing) times and where “in person” interactions are still, and constantly challenged (and more are done virtually/online) and people wears face mask and shield, may we see their best version of a “new normal” winner.

There are pros and experienced ones but who knows? One of the young, vibrant, promising newbies could turn out to be the most capable, willing and effective beauty to live out the role and influence the people with their voice.

Afterall, whoever gets the crown will be the official voice of the nation. The Filipinos deserve not the beautiful, nor the sexy muse with towering height.

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