Miss Universe 2023 Finally Considered Size—Is That Enough?

The 72nd Miss Universe pageant seemed different to me and the world this year. The first plus-sized candidate in the prestigious pageant was historic.

Miss Nepal, Jane Dipika Garrett, broke beauty standards as the first plus-size Miss Universe competitor. Her body positivity offered a welcome difference to the pageant. I thought her involvement was a global victory for women. Even though Nicaragua's Sheynnis Palacios won, Miss Nepal's entry was pioneering and gave young girls hope for redefining beauty norms.

Although Jane's inclusion in the pageant is significant, it was long overdue for a change. These pageants have misled us for decades about what "beauty" is. Beauty is varied and not universal. Such pageants should re-evaluate everything. Jane's entry is a step forward, but it's also a reminder that beauty standards need to be improved. How some of my coworkers view this change:

1. Late, Too Little Seeing a pageant become more inclusive is refreshing. Too little, too late. More and greater reforms are needed to make it a platform for all women. From the start, it should have been inclusive. Miss Nepal is improving the lives of many women, which merits recognition.

2. Progressive “Adding a plus-sized contestant is progressive and inclusive of the pageant. Now we see the power of influence and representation. Young women will feel more confident in themselves if they see plus-sized ladies in places like this.

3. Late but Still Happening��“Miss Universe now has a plus-size woman! It only took 72 years to dispel the prejudice that beautiful women should be zero-size. It's late, but it's occurring. In recent years, beauty standards have changed, which will lead to more revisions! Jane deserves praise.

4. Why It Took So LongWhile I applaud Miss Universe for finally including a plus-size woman, what took so long? Shouldn't this be done years ago?

5. Better Late Than Never “Including plus-size models in Miss Universe was a big step toward redefining beauty norms and promoting a more diverse and inclusive representation of women. I think the pageant should have done this years ago since they could transform how the world saw "beauty." However, better late than never.

Jane's pageant entry wasn't the only one that made waves. The first transsexual contestants were Miss Portugal Marina Machete and Miss Netherlands Rikkie Kolle. The first married women and mothers to compete were Miss Guatemala, Michelle Cohn, and Miss Colombia, Camila Avella. I don't know if this was a strategic move by Miss Universe or a genuine attempt to break the glass ceiling. For today, let's celebrate a global women's achievement.

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