Beauty Pageants and the Effects on Young Girls

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Beauty Pageants and the Effects on Young Girls Self Esteem

There are many young girls entered in beauty pageants every year. Are the contests these young ladies entered in degrading to their self-esteem? Many people glamorize pageants as being a wonderful thing for children to be entered in, but there can only be one winner of a pageant. So imagine how the eighteen other girls whom didn’t win feel. There are many different factors to look at when judging a beauty pageant. The young girls and their mothers put so much into these pageants. many parents put pressure on their young children to do outstanding in these pageants and rise above the rest. Some girls get a great experience out of competing in the pageants but most young girls are too hard on themselves, and some develop self-esteem issues, or even eating disorders.

History of Beauty Pageants

Beauty pageants have been around for a long time in the United States, in fact they became a part of the American society in the 1920’s. Beauty pageants originated as a marketing tool in 1921 by an Atlantic City Hotel owner who wanted the city’s tourists to remain in town longer (Nussbaum). A local news reporter started the infamous term still used today by saying, “Let’s call her ‘Miss America!’” Pageants were introduced into the lives of Americans and became a major event. Marketing a racial breakthrough, in 1983 Vanessa Williams became the first African-American titled Miss America. Another advance for pageants in 1994 the first handicapped women won the title of Miss America. The pageantry world helps introduce a face to the faceless troubles of racism handicaps and illnesses (Nussbaum).

Child beauty pageants however started 40 years later in the 1960’s. Child beauty pageants consist of modeling sportswear, evening attire, dance and talent. Judges consider it the “Whole Package” (Nussbaum).

Before the Pageant

Preparing for these pageants is an assortment of demanding work. Parents either choreograph a...