It is an unfortunate dark side of pageantry that many assume contestants to be self-centered, vain and lacking modesty. Those involved in pageants, whether they run the events, coach the girls, or enter the competitions themselves, have found that the opposite is the actual truth. Most pageant girls are polite, outgoing, supportive young women who hope to do their best while being welcoming and friendly. Common courtesy and basic manners can sometimes be lost in favor of competition but pageant winners know its their behavior on and off the stage that helped them attain that crown and make impressions on others that continue to enrich their lives today. Here’s what to remember about pageant etiquette and how to act like a winner:

  • Always be respectful of your fellow pageant contestants. Don’t engage in negative gossip with other girls or talk and laugh while someone is onstage.
  • Always clap for your competition. Always.
  • Remember to bring all of your own beauty and talent accessories. In the unfortunate instance that you forget something and are offered the chance to borrow an item from a fellow contestant remember to thank them and to return the item in good condition.
  • While addressing judges, do so with a smile and a clear, audible speaking voice.
  • When shaking hands, make sure to do so firmly but not harshly.
  • Make sure to introduce yourself to pageant newbies and try to make them feel welcome. Ensure they have all they need and help them with any questions they may have.
  • Be respectful of other contestant’s parents and families.
  • Remain attentive to the stage director’s instructions and directions in order to maintain a well-organized backstage area.
  • Keep your costumes, makeup, props, accessories and personal belongings tidy and out of the way of others. Nobody appreciates a messy backstage area.

Within the Miss Teen Pageant competitions, we expect all contestants to conduct themselves as ladies whenever engaging in pageant duties or events. By following these tips, you’ll be able to make favorable impressions, meet new friends and learn valuable life skills that will benefit you for years to come.