Miss Teen USA will no longer feature the swimsuit portion of the competition. Michael Antinoro, the man who bought Miss Universe.org from Trump, has decided to go in a different direction. Instead of swim suits, the teens ranging in age from 14 – 19 will be wearing athletic wear. It’s been said that the swimsuit portion was always intended to show off the ladies athletic physique. Intending to promote good eating habits and exercise. However, pageants have always had a bad rap for seemingly exploiting women’s sexuality with the swimsuit portion. I highly doubt any feminist would disagree with such rhetoric despite the pageants so called efforts to focus on charity work and what the ladies do for their community.
This year the producers of the Miss Teen USA pageant are aiming to rebrand the pageant by having the ladies rock athletic wear. The Miss World pageant ended its swimsuit portion back in 2014 and received favorable feedback. I honestly feel it’s a nice attempt at trying to steer away from the old ways of beauty pageants, which have always been synonymous with exploiting the female body and only focusing on a woman’s physical beauty, but will it really change things? I doubt it. For years these pageants have been known to exploit, sexualize women, instill ideals of perfection, and archaic standards of beauty. We still have yet to see a pageant that will promote the beautiful differences in women, like body type for example. In my opinion if the producers of these pageants really want to promote a more positive self-image of women they need to completely revamp the competition. I give them a C+ for their efforts but if they ever really want more support from women they really need to try harder.
What are your thoughts about the changes being made to the Miss Teen USA pageant?
By: Shannon Lockhart