The beauty pageant is a cultural phenomenon in which women are judged on their physical beauty, talent, personality, and their answers to judges’ questions. While the emphasis is placed on the beauty aspect, it is important to be as prepared as possible with some simple tips for answering beauty pageant questions, because that's your opportunity to show who you are inside. Generally, canned answers are not the best course of action. Answering well reflects that you are confident and well-spoken.
Preparing to Be Unprepared
There is a chance that you will be asked a question that you’ve never thought about before in your life. One of the best ways to be ready for this is to become a seasoned improviser. In many regions, there are classes in improvisation in which you and your classmates will be put in many strange scenes and situations. The only way to get through those scenes is to talk your way through it. Classes like these will build up your skills in such a way that you are used to gliding gracefully through your spontaneous response instead of stumbling through it.
A lot of people have the tendency to mumble, swallow words, or speed through bits of language, making them difficult to understand. Practice enunciating every syllable when you are at home working on your answers. By emphasizing exactly how these words should sound, you can increase your chances of being easily understood when you give your answer. This can also set you apart from other contestants who have poor diction.
Confidence cannot always be taught, but it is one of the most important attributes of a beauty pageant queen. Some ways to develop confidence in your speaking are to speak in front of a large group of people, to join a speaking group like Toastmasters, to act in a play, and to frequently engage people in intelligent conversation. Some people like giving themselves affirmations such as “When I speak, people listen” or they visualize themselves doing well during the answer portion of their routine. Confidence does not come overnight, but it can be achieved with hard work.
Take a Moment
No matter how confident or improvisation-friendly you may be, it is a good idea to take a few seconds before you answer a question. The more quickly you respond, the more it looks like you have come into the contest with an answer already prepared. This few seconds also gives you the opportunity to think of your answer and to try to organize it in an effective way.
Your beauty pageant answer can be divided into four main parts. After the three-second pause (the first part) you will begin your first sentence with either the words “I believe” or “I feel strongly.” Next, you will talk about your beliefs while answering the question. Lastly, you will summarize the answer saying “Overall, I believe” to wrap things up. Be completely honest as you are answering. Do not state something you do not actually believe, and try to talk about things that you are genuinely passionate about.
Bryan Cohen has been a writer since 2001 and is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a double degree in English and dramatic art. His writing has appeared on various online publications including his personal website Build Creative Writing Ideas.