Toddler Beauty Pageants

Toddlers and Tiaras on LifeStyle YOU has sparked huge debate over whether kid’s beauty pageants are great confidence boosters or just plain creepy.

Most, like Herald Sun writer Cheryl Critchley, think they reflect poorly on the children and the parents. “The other night I watched, transfixed, as truly awful stage mothers trowelled make-up on their five-year-olds, doused them in fake tan and teased their hair to the heavens,” she said. “One eight-year-old, tarted up to rival Tammy Baker for a beauty pageant routine, swivelled her tiny hips and pouted "I'm so hot tonight" … It was like watching a car crash. It was so, so bad but I couldn't turn away.”

But whatever your view of the phenomenon you better hold your breath because it’s coming to Australia.
Melbourne based company, Little Miss Bayside, will host its own child pageant in June, 2010, in response to the “huge popularity” of such shows around the world.

But pageant organiser Laura Buik insists her event will not be an over-the-top forum for stage-mothers. "Images of American child beauty pageants have at one time or another made us all cringe - myself included," she told the Herald Sun. "But the Little Miss Bayside Pageant is not about false teeth, fake tans and over-the-top rhinestone-encrusted gowns. We want to encourage children and promote self-esteem through a fun and supportive experience."

The pageant will consist of three main sections - Modelling & Interview Questions, Photographic and Talent. Entrants will pose in a formal gown, casual outfit and sport or swimwear and can choose whether to wear make-up or not.

Many psychologists and their mothers have been very vocal about their disapproval of these events because they say it teaches children to believe that being beautiful is everything.

What do you think? Are toddler beauty pageants okay?

Catch Toddlers and Tiaras on LifeStyle YOU.

Want more? We thought you might like this video.


Sign Out

Join the Conversation

Please note, LifeStyle cannot respond to all comments posted in our comments feed. If you have a comment or query you would like LifeStyle to respond to, please use our feedback form.

Please login to comment
Posted by MelissaReport
I would love to put my little one in as I think it builds stepping stone for the future and gives little girls a lot of encouragement and self esteem you need alot of that in our world today :)
Posted by Report
Disgraceful! ban them and let children be children; time enough to grow up and decide for themselves if they wish to parade around like a tinsel town bimbo. What about instilling a sense of beauty in children and keep it authentic - no phony Hollywoodising our kids
Posted by Report
I have been inspired by Toddlers and Tiaras and now I am running The Little Prince & Princess of NSW Pageant in 2013 at a venue in the Illawarra, we are looking for more contestants, aswell as judges for the pageant day!! If any-one has any experience in pageants, then you can qualify. Contact us through our Facebook page if interested..... Cheers
p.s. This is not a 'glitz' pageant (it is much more downscale than those)
Posted by MelissaReport
Hi could you please keep me informed and send me some info to thanking you :)
Posted by Report
i am 11 years old and i WOULD LOVE TO DO A BEAUTY PAGENT BUT I NEVER HAVE BEEN ABLE TO mabye give it a chance some people want to do it and its not just mikki wood
Posted by Report
i dont think this should be band i believe certain aspects of it should deffinatly be banned though but as a sport it should stay. maybe be toned down
Posted by Jennifer281Report
I think it is a great thing for children if they WANT to do it. I am looking to start a pageant for SA. Mine will however be both Natural and Glitz. With the same prize awarded to top winners in both segments.
Posted by Report
I LOVE pageants!! I think they are fantastic! I do agree sometimes some of the people are over the top and sometimes some of them shock me too, but who cares, that’s them. I can see what some of you are saying but a child can have a child’s life and still do things they love like this. Also, we as the parents need to protect our children from predators and be aware of this, they are around regardless, but why should we stop playing dress up because of the sickos in the world. I think that’s ridiculous! As a child and to this day, i wish i had the chance to go in beauty pageants and I LOVE the glitz pageants, the more glitz and glamour the better, i think they are great! Looks like lots of great fun too. I am hoping, if they bring it back next year, to go into it myself in the over 18s, as i am a young mum, not too old and would love to do it, as it is my dream. I love the American ways, i always have, always wanted to be a cheerleader at school etc, love all that!! I really think if the child loves to do it for them (like i did) and not pushed onto them by family then "why not". I definitely think there should be glitz pageants in Australia, as most I’ve seen or looked into in the past are natural pageants and you can’t have anything fake (no fake tans etc etc). I think it’s the child and the parents’ choice to decide. As i feel like i really missed out living in this country not having those opportunities. I have a 15 year old daughter and a 13 year old daughter and they love that kind of thing too, very much like me and they are the ones that found out about the US pageant coming to Melbourne in July and they are begging me to put them into it, without me saying anything. We are very girly girls and LOVE this kind of thing, it’s all fun and as long as it doesn’t get nasty then i think it’s great for those who love this type of thing, like we do! One of my daughters said she doesn’t really want to go in the natural pageants as much as the US one because you can’t get a fake tan and the natural pageants are not as glam as the glitz pageants and so excited that its coming to Australia. I thought it was cute. So for all those people trying to stop it and have a problem with it, STOP! We all are different and like different things, and we love this type of thing, so leave it alone!!!!
Posted by Adriana15Report
I am excited about the pageant coming to Australia, as I am a pageant coach, I have been involved with dance, modeling and gymnastics most of my life, I am also a personal fitness trainer and I also work as a tiny tots gymnastics teacher, dance teacher with young ballerinas and also teaching dance to children who have never danced before. I know that with all my experience I can help young children wishing to enter this world of pageants to become confident in all aspects of what is required...... As it is not full glitz is awesome and even if it was full glitz that is acceptable too as long as the child wants to participate and it is not all about the parent wanting the child to do it! If you would like to hire me to improve your childs chances of becoming a winner or just improve there confidence in the world of pageants phone 0417628619 My rates are very reasonable!!!
Posted by deb_hoReport
Aussies have held some sort of pageant since time began! Girls have paraded in their bikinis on the beach in Miss Surf quests, in gowns for Miss Australia and the like and babies prettied up for baby shows. No big deal. I think what most people object to is the way these American kids act. They're obnoxious, bratty and rude. Their (usually very overweight) mother misguidedly believes that her child is the most beautiful, talented, adorable child with the best personality. Wrong. These kids are quite often so plain that without makeup they're like every other kid. And they have zero talent. It's cringe worthy to watch when you've watched children who learn dancing full time perform. I'd be extremely embarrassed if some of these pageant princesses were mine.