The Negative Effects Of Beauty Pageants And Self-Esteem

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Most Americans are unaware that the first beauty pageant in America originated in 1854, 66 years before women could even vote. Since then, beauty pageants have been extremely detrimental to our society in many ways, although they may seem like nothing but glitter and glam. I believe that beauty pageants are exploitive because they promote the idea that women are just bodies that can be rated on a scale from 1 to 10, which causes society to believe women are nothing more than their appearance, it also has the potential to demote self esteem, and it does not accurately represent what it means to be female. While some people believe that beauty pageants boost self esteem and prepare women for future career, these pageants can also be damaging …show more content…
Even parents of contestant’s state that “they 've noticed their children have gained confidence through routines where they must speak professionally and perform onstage” (Sheaks). Some pageants like Distinguished Young Women, a pageant in Indiana, and have a more modest approach, where self esteem is created in a pageant setting. The girls have dress codes to prevent sexualization, and the pageant judges are “conscious about not putting a focus on their bodies” (Sheaks). Due to the positive environment that these types of pageants occur in, pageants can help build self esteem, rather than hinder it. One mother says that her child is “a role model to many and her confidence to stand up and speak out came from her improved self-esteem through pageantry” …show more content…
It moves the beauty pageant from the runway to real life as females fight against each other to be the most ‘beautiful’ girl, when it should not be a competition. While most people believe that beauty contests like ‘Miss America’ are just for entertainment, they are unaware of the stigma it creates and the damage it causes. There can be benefits to beauty pageants, such as how contestants can gain self esteem through pageants and develop skills that may be helpful for future jobs. Even though it is “illegal in the United States when practiced as discrimination, unequal treatment of women continues to pervade social life” (OpenStax College 265). This means that America still needs to move towards equal treatment between genders, and the first step towards true equality between men and women is not down the runway. For America and for females around the world, it is to remove these sexist pageants from practice and prove that women are more brains than

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