We know you’re busy preparing for your next pageant. You’ve already spent hours practicing your talent, preparing for interview, working out and volunteering in your community… not to mention trying to find the perfect wardrobe pieces. To help we put together a list of our top 5 pageant wardrobe tips and even asked some pageant VIP’s for their insider opinions too. The results may surprise you… and are super easy to follow!
Show Off Your Personal Style
It’s important to show the judges who you are while on stage (not who you think they want to win). If you love ball gowns and rhinestones, find a dress that has just that. Crazy over velvet? Wear velvet! The most important thing on stage is looking comfortable in your own skin.
Katherine McQuade, 2016-2017 National American Miss, weighed in on the topic. She said, “My best advice when selecting your competition evening gown would be to pick a dress that makes you feel the most beautiful. Make sure your dress is your choice, not your mom’s choice and not your coach’s choice — because when you hit that stage in the dress of your choice, your inner beauty and confidence will shine out.”
Tell A Story
Let your wardrobe tell a story from beginning to end. If your natural style is classy with a lot of bright colors, follow those guidelines during the entire pageant – from rehearsal to evening dress.
Katie Elliott, Miss Maine America 2017, followed this tip while competing in Miss America earlier this year. She said, “When planning my pageant wardrobe I tried to develop a ‘look.’ Personally, I love all things that are classy and timeless so that is the style I tend to lean toward. However, other women love looking sexy or wearing unique designs. Wear whatever you feel best in and keep your look consistent throughout all phases of competition. Doing so will help the judges remember you and show your personality!”
What is the easiest way to keep your outfits looking amazing during the entire pageant? Take the time to prepare and organize your wardrobe. Before the pageant starts select your outfits – don’t forget the shoes and accessories. Then, photograph them so you can remember exactly what you’re wearing for each appearance. Say goodbye to day of wardrobe jitters! This is also the best way to make sure your wardrobe is appropriate for the pageant system you’re competing in.
Samantha Dahlborg, Miss Maine USA 2014, reminds us to, “do some research on the pageant you plan on competing in. When competing in Miss USA your gown can be more revealing and sexy, however Miss America tends to lean towards sophistication and beauty.”
Invest in Alterations
What is our number one pageant wardrobe pet peeve? When a contestants wardrobe doesn’t fit. It doesn’t matter if your dress is jersey, satin, chiffon, a-line or mermaid. If the dress fits incorrectly it will take away from your moment on stage. Alterations can be expensive – but they make a huge difference.
Laurel Stiekes, USA National Teen 2017, said, “You can’t put a price on the perfect fit! Take the time to alter your clothing to compliment you. Most importantly, LOVE what you wear! Matching your attitude with your outfit guarantees a great first impression in any situation.”
Show Yourself First
The last (and most important) wardrobe tip – make sure you wear your wardrobe, don’t let it wear you. If you put something on and the focus goes to your top, shoes, earrings, or dress – and not to you – don’t wear it. Now, we’re not saying your clothes need to be boring, but they need to show you off, not the other way around.
Génesis Dávilla, Miss World Puerto Rico 2014 says, “Less is best!” is the key to mastering this tip.