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The Excessive Price Of Magnificence Pageants

Tens of 1000’s of dollars can get you a 12 months of school, a brand new automobile or perhaps a down payment on a house. Or you could use that money to enter a significant beauty pageant, like the Miss USA pageant, set to take place Sunday. Contestants often spend an amount that is more than the money prize awarded to the pageant’s winner: reportedly someplace in the 5-figure vary for national pageants, and presumably a lot much less for state and local titles.

Kim Gravel, star of Lifetime’s “Kim of Queens” (which can return for a second season this fall), owner of The Pageant Place costume and coaching service and the 1991 Miss Georgia America, mentioned pageant dresses alone can run from “$seven-hundred to $1,000 when bought off the rack, or as a lot as $5,000 for the severe competitor.”

“Now it’s an enormous business,” stated Gravel. “There’s a pageant each week.”
Lisa Barefield, advertising director for Henri’s Cloud Nine in Minerva, Ohio, which is dressing four women competing in the 2014 Miss USA pageant, mentioned she’s seen custom dresses value $8,000 to $10,000 every “for the big pageants.”

Roughly 2.5 million ladies compete in greater than 100,000 beauty pageants every year in the U.S. according to Statistic Brain, and at the least seventy two % of contestants hire a pageant coach like Gravel, usually at a value of $a hundred or more an hour, sometimes three classes every week, based on Gravel—and a long checklist of different bills. Then there’s hair and makeup (about $250 an hour), a spray tan ($75), and a wig or extensions ($200).

Pageants additionally charge an entry charge that may range from $300 to $500, Gravel said, though some pageants can price as a lot as $1,000 to enter.

Barefield said prospects sometimes want further outfits past an evening gown — for the opening number, interview portion, rehearsals, swimsuit competitors, and public appearances. And all have to be accessorized with footwear and jewellery.

“It can undoubtedly add up,” said Barefield.
Rachel Slawson, 19, the present Miss Provo USA 2015 and a Miss Utah USA 2014 contestant, spends a bit less than a lot of pageant contestants. She plans to spend $600 to $seven-hundred at Salt Lake City-based mostly shop Ypsilon for her costume to compete in the 2015 pageant.

“To me, it isn’t so much long clip in hair extensions about the price of the costume as it is how I really feel in it,” she mentioned.
Final season, Slawson stated, she spent solely $a hundred for a Nephi Garcia gown because the designer gave her a low cost as promotion for his model. She’s also sponsored by make-up artist Jannet Delgaldo, Pureza Salon, Medi Spa and Xtend Barre Provo, which supplies her magnificence providers and an area to train in alternate for promotion on social media to her 2,500+ followers. All the rest of her expenses, including journey prices and the entry charge, she pays for on her own.

“My first pageant I invested little or no effort and money,” she said. “This yr I have taken it more significantly. I want to win. I want to be Miss Utah USA.”

Gravel said younger women enter pageants not simply to earn scholarship money, as she did, but additionally because they believe a win will assist propel them into the highlight. Actress Ali Landry, for example, was Miss USA 1996 and singer Britney Spears competed in local pageants in her native Kentwood, Louisiana.

“It’s lucrative on so many different ranges and that’s why it’s so aggressive now,” she stated. “It’s concerning the launching pad.”

Pageants have also modified over time, from what contestants wear—swimsuits, Gravel mentioned, use to be rather more modest, for example — to a lower price of entry, as paradoxical as that sounds.

“It was dearer again in the day,” she stated, as a result of there wasn’t a “dress store on each corner,” forcing girls to pay designers for customized-made dresses. Now the choices are limitless, because of a proliferation of formal-wear outlets and imports from international locations like China.

“The accessibility is extra prevalent so it drives the fee down,” Gravel stated.
While health has at all times been a part of pageants, Gravel mentioned, expectations have gone up. Many ladies, feeling they have to be in good physical form, and hire dear private trainers or go for plastic surgery. Gravel believes this is ailing-advised.

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