Are Beauty Pageants Harmful Essay

Competition can be fairly called one of the main motivators, as well as one of the main organizing principles for individuals. It affects many spheres of life: employment, work performance, global marketing, education, creativity and arts, even entertainment. A bright example of the latter is beauty contests; despite their purely entertaining nature, they can be harmful or even dangerous in terms of setting inappropriate beauty standards, encouraging to evaluate people by their appearance, and affecting public opinion negatively.

The most obvious detrimental effect of beauty pageants is enforcing an inappropriate body perception for men and women. Unlike the majority of “average” women, the beauty of such contests’ participants is cherished and rehearsed; this is the case when natural beauty is heavily supported by the efforts of visagistes and dressers. Though pageants represent the absolute minority of the society, their appearances set high, unrealistic standards for how women of all ages should look like (Miss America). Young girls who try to live up to these standards, mature women complexing about their bodies, men who demand their wives/girlfriends to look like beauty pageant participants—all of them are affected by the illusions propagated by beauty contests.

Another perception issue arises from the very nature of beauty contests—the objectification of women. Despite proclaimed gender equality, physical attractiveness (including sexual) remains one of the major requirements for women today (FAR). No matter how progressive and tolerant people strive to be, they still make their first impression about other people by their appearance, and this is natural. However, the idea of beauty contests implies evaluating women solely on their physical shape, ignoring all other aspects of individuality. Interviewing, meant to show a contestants personality, is a fraud; as one of the former pageants wrote, none of the judges wanted to hear about deep problems, asking about the most challenging childhood experiences (Generation Progress). This turns a woman into a media object, or even a product, that can be assessed and then either approved or rejected; due to the popularity of beauty contests, such an attitude is being widely propagated.

Health problems among the younger generation is yet another negative effect caused by beauty contests. Skinny models performing in such shows have undergone years of exercising and diets—they have developed special lifestyles to maintain their perfect shape; on the other hand, adolescent girls striving to look “better” exhaust themselves with hunger, considering it to be the main method to becoming slim (FAR). Such an attitude often leads to anorexia and other related psychological problems; because of the continuous influence of media-created images of the “perfect shape,” the number of young women with anorexia remains high.

The idea of beauty contests implies competing in physical attractiveness. Ignoring the absurdity of this idea, a number of detrimental effects caused by such contests still needs to be emphasized. Beauty contests set unrealistic standards of beauty, which lower women’s self-esteem and increase the demands of men for their wives or girlfriends. Beauty contests objectify women, turning them into a product that can be assessed based solely on its appearance. In addition, beauty pageants influence the minds of adolescents, often resulting in anorexia and other psychological disorders.


“The Negative Effects of Beauty Pageants on Society.” Miss America. N.p., 11 Nov. 2010. Web. 13 Jan. 2014. <>.

Angelotti, Amanda. “Confessions of a Beauty Pageant Drop-Out.” Generation Progress. N.p., 25 Jan. 2006. Web. 13 Jan. 2014. <>.

Ferguson, Ryan. “Anorexia: The Scourge of Adolescence.” FAR. N.p., 30 June 2012. Web. 13 Jan. 2014.

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Essay about Do Beauty Pageants Do More Harm Than Good For Children?

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Do Beauty Pageants Do More Harm Than Good For Children? The lights are all on you, the make-up, the hair, and the extravagant dresses. Your blood pumps with adrenaline; you feel nervous, yet excited. All eyes are on you; the pretty girl strutting across the stage in ostentatious costumes that flicker once caught in the light. Many people have witnessed a beauty pageant whether it is one on television or stage. Not many are in denial of the lovability of the younger aged children executing their talents in front of crowds. Beauty pageants have been around since the 1920’s setting a trend in the American society, but the history of beauty pageants began in Troy and Ancient China, where the contestants consisted of sculptors, actors, poets,…show more content…

The lifestyle of these children develops into an abnormal one. It is full of competitiveness, jealousy, stress and negative self-evaluation. Some beauty pageants that emerged as a strong marketing and advertising tool developed into political, educational and entertaining events. When small children are encouraged to participate in such pageants, they start developing a self-image, and work hard to manage with it. They start planning their diets to have picture-perfect faces and bodies. This makes them avoid certain food products at such a tender age when it is very important to have healthy eating habits for the proper development of the body and the brain. This not only has shot-term consequences but long-term effects. These children are at a higher risk of developing eating disorders because the idea of a perfect body becomes an obsession with them. Secondly, they remain weak physically and are more prone to diseases as their body could never become healthy enough to develop a strong immunity system. Eating disorders like Anorexia Nervosa and Bulimia Nervosa are commonly found in these children. In many of the case, these take on such a severe form that psychotic intervention is required to normalize the situation. Apart from the physical and eating disorders, the beauty pageants have an erosive effect on the

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