Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Glitz Pageants - A Family Tradition of Personality!

I have eight grandchildren – five boys and three girls. Two of the boys and three of the girls have been in glitz pageants. In fact, all five won the very first pageant that they entered, even though they went up against more “polished,” experienced pageant kids. Just recently, my youngest granddaughter was in her first pageant, and we wondered if she’d break our streak of luck. She didn’t! She won the crown, along with all the optionals.

How have all my grands managed this? Is it because they’re so breathtakingly gorgeous? Well, of course I’d like to think so. After all, I think they’re all beautiful, but I might be just a tad biased. Every parent and grandparent thinks his or her children are the prettiest or most handsome on earth, right? That’s how it’s supposed to be. Looking at it from an objective viewpoint, there’s no question that my grandkids are attractive. They’re cute, but that’s not why they’ve been so successful with pageants.

I’ve discussed this before, but it bears repeating: IT’S THE PERSONALITY!! Yep, all five won because of the personality they showed on stage. The first four were between the ages of two and three when they did their first pageants, so they understood kind of what was going on. They’re all happy, upbeat kids, and we knew we could get them to smile on stage. Number five, however, who’s not quite a year old, was somewhat of a mystery. We had no idea how she would react to being on stage in front of an audience.

Fortunately, her mom made sure that the baby got a good nap before the pageant. Backstage, she kept her happy and in a playful mood. The other babies in her age division were pretty, and they had beautiful pageant dresses. The big difference was in personality points. The others didn’t cry onstage, but they were kinda just “there.” They didn’t laugh, smile, or giggle. Our baby, on the other hand, smiled, giggled, squealed, and kicked her legs in glee. The judges could tell she was happy on stage and having a great time. This, of course, scored personality points, which put her over the top.

How did we get our baby to show so much personality on stage? We had a secret weapon – her older brother. She thinks her eight-year-old brother is the greatest, funniest thing on the planet. We took advantage of this at the pageant by placing him in the audience. He sat just behind the judges, and he called out to his little sister when their mom walked the baby onto the stage. He made sure he had the baby’s attention.

Next, he slid out to the edge of the aisle, making sure he still held sister’s attention. He danced around and made faces, and the baby loved it! We were pretty sure this strategy would work, and it did. That’s how to score personality points in a pageant. Our pageant baby is carrying on the personality tradition!

Friday, March 18, 2011

How to Enter Pageant Photos

Photos are often a big part of glitz pageants. Most have a Best Photograph category, which might be an optional. Even if it's an optional and it's not a requirement, it's still a good idea to enter a photo of your child. Why? Because it serves as an "introduction." Pageant photos are usually judged hours before the pageant begins, so entering a pageant pic is sort of like getting a "headstart" on the pageant.

You know what they say about first impressions, right? If you enter a WOW pageant photo, the judges will remember that contestant and be eager to see her on stage. This is exactly the response you want from your pageant pics!

Now, down to the basics of entering pageant photographs. The pageant photos should be 8 x 10 inches or 8.5 x 11 inches. A commenter just told me that in her experience, most glitz pageants prefer the 8.5 x 11 size (By the way, thanks for that info!). Maybe it depends on the region of the U.S. Each photo should be placed in a clear photo protector, which is more or less like a sleeve. You need to include a paper that has the contestant's name and the age division she's entering. This should be back-to-back with the photo, so that the judge can simply turn the photo over to see the child's name and division. Make sure you use a large enough font so the information can be read easily. It should also be neat and attractive.

Some pageants allow contestants to enter more than one photo, and some pageants have different categories for photos. For example, the pageant might include glitz photos, natural photos, black-and-white photos, etc. Take advantage of all photo categories! If the pageant allows you to enter more than one photo in glitz, do it. You'll usually be charged extra for this, but if you have great pageant photos, it will be worth it. Give the judges more than one preview of your daughter by entering more than one "look."

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Beauty Pageant Tips: Keeping Kids Happy Backstage

Most child beauty pageants and toddler pageants include a lot of wait time. Contestants and parents might have to wait backstage or at another location for hair and makeup. Then they have to wait for their age division to begin so that they can do their beauty walk. If they’re entered in more than one event, like swimwear, casual wear, or outfit of choice, they might have time to wait for those to start, also, after they’re dressed and all ready for the event. After they’re done with all their stage walks, they have to wait for crowning. Depending on the age division, the number of contestants in the pageant, and on how the pageant is organized, wait time can be considerable. For girls who are old enough to understand winning, the time waiting for the crowning ceremony can be pretty uncomfortable.

The best way to keep your little girl happy is to keep her entertained backstage. That way, the wait won’t seem so long, and her mind will be taken off of being nervous about how she’ll place in the pageant. With this in mind, plan ahead of time to take some toys, games, or books with you to beauty pageants.

Of course, what you take in the way of entertainment will largely depend on the girl’s age and on her individual interests. Babies might enjoy rattles, hand puppets, or musical toys. Toddlers might enjoy simple games, books, blocks, or pull toys. Younger kids might also feel comforted by having their favorite stuffed animal in tow. Older kids might enjoy hand-held video games, iPods, or netbooks.

Keep in mind that other the kids in the same age group will usually be together in pretty much the same location backstage, and they often play together. In view of this, you might want to include a game or toy that encourages participation of more than one player.

If your daughter enjoys coloring or drawing, bring along a coloring book or some paper, along with some crayons or colored pencils. NEVER consider taking markers to a pageant! No matter how careful you are with them, they often find a way of getting on the child’s skin – or even worse – ruining the dress.

You might want to provide a special new toy for pageant day. Take your child shopping to pick out a toy or game before the pageant, but don’t allow her to open it and play with it until she’s waiting backstage at the pageant. This will give her something to look forward to and help keep her happy, excited, and smiling!

The Perfect Pageant Kit

If you compete in glitz beauty pageants, you’ll find that you have a lot of stuff to keep up with on pageant day. If you’re organized and use a last-minute check list, you’ll be sure not to leave anything behind. You don’t want to be miles from home and realize you forgot to bring along everything your child will need. By keeping everything together, staying organized will be much easier.

Your glitz pageant dress should be stored in a large plastic box with a tight-fitting lid. The dress should sit upright in the box, and a rolled-up beach towel should be placed inside to keep the bodice’s form. The skirt needs to be spread out on the bottom of the storage box.
Some pageant moms prefer to store their pageant dresses a little differently. They still use the same type of box, but they place the bodice flat on the bottom of the box, turn the skirt upside down, and place the skirt on top of the bodice. This helps give the skirt more “lift.”

Let’s call the box you keep the beauty dress in your beauty box. Its main purpose is to house the dress and provide a means to transport the dress safely, but you’ll have room in the “beauty box” for other items, as well. Here’s a list of other items you need to have in the beauty box for glitz pageants:

1. White mary jane shoes.
2. 2 pairs of white ankle socks with lace.
3. Hairbow in a small crush-proof box.
4. 2 pairs of earrings.
5. Choker.
6. 2 crowning pins.
7. A long button-up shirt.

Place the choker, the earrings, the crowning pins, and any other jewelry in the box with the hairbow. Place the socks in a plastic bag with the shoes – you don’t want any dirt from the shoes to get on the dress. The dress should be considered your prize pageant possession and should always be protected and well cared for.

Keep related small items together in a separate box. For example, a fishing tackle box or a craft box with compartments and a handle work well for this. This box should hold safety pins, bobby pins, straight pins, extra rhinestones, hair spray, tissues, E6000 glue, toothpicks, sheer lotion, Wet Wipes, and any small toys or books you’re bringing to the pageant.

Hang any other outfits, like those for sportswear, casual wear, costume wear, or outfit of choice in a garment bag. Place the shoes and other accessories in plastic bags and store them in the bottom of the garment bag.

Now…how do you carry all this stuff to the pageant? I found that a rolling cart or dolly works well. The beauty box can be strapped securely onto the dolly with bungee cords, and the accessories box can rest atop the beauty box. More bungee cords can keep it in place. Garments bag can be hung on the handle. Of course, all this is much easier if you enlist a friend or family member to help!

Pageant Stage Walk with a Toddler

When you enter a toddler pageant with your child, you might want to do the stage walk with your child, especially if she's under three years old. Keep in mind however, that some toddlers cna do the pageant walk all by themselves, and such kids will often score higher than one who was escorted on stage by a parent or other adult. Of course, judges don't expect young toddlers to go on stage by themselves. In this case, judges of toddler pageants won't deduct points for parent participation.

You might choose to walk with your toddler and hold her hand, or you might prefer to walk slightly behind the child. Do this only if she's old enough to understand to stop on the Xs. It's a BIG must for her to stop in front of the judges and remain there long enough for them to get a good look at her. She'll also need to turn on the Xs - with or without your help.

There's another important point you need to understand. Don't let your toddler "run wild" on stage. Some parents think this is cute, so they allow or even encourage this type of behavior. There should, however, be some sort of order to the pageant walk, even in toddler pageants. It's difficult for the judges to focus on a constantly moving target.

Another mistake some parents make in toddler pageants during the pageant walk is to allow their kids to remain on stage too long. Not only is this disrespectful to the other contestants and the pageant director, but it's not popular with judges, either. Each contestant is allotted a certain amount of time for their stage walk, in order to make the pageant fair and to ensure that the toddler pageant runs smoothly and on time. When you use more than your apportioned time with your beauty walk, you're cutting into someone else's time. A lot of judges will deduct points for contestants who remain on stage for too long.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Typical Pageant Stage Walk

The pageant stage walk is where your little princess will "perform" for the judges and for the audience in beauty pageants. Keep in mind that not all stages are the same size, and not all beauty pageants use this exact pageant walk or pattern. Of all the pageants we've done, however, a huge majority have used this pageant stage walk.

The Xs are usually marked on the stage floor with tape. At each X, your little girl will be expected to do something, unless, of course, she's very young.

------------------Back of stage


-----------------Front of stage


X1- The contestant usually comes from backstage to X1. Here, she stands for just a moment. Some contestants turn here, and some don’t. Either way, the child should strike a pose on this X.
X2 – The child walks from X1 to X2. This is probably the most important X on the stage because it’s right in front of the judges. The contestant should make eye contact will each judge – not just “cut her eyes” – but actually turn her face toward each judge. Here, the child should do her personality act, like blow kisses, wave, wink, paint her face, etc. Next, she should turn slowly on this X.
X3 – While walking from X2 to X3, the child should maintain eye contact with the judges. Some pageant coaches teach their girls to do a “crab walk.” With this, the little girl walks sort of sideways. On X3, the contestant should do something else “cutesie” and do a slow turn.
X4 – From X3, the child should walk to X4, without stopping on X2. On X4, the child should wave and/or blow kisses and make one last turn before exiting the stage. If the child is exiting the stage from X4, she should wave goodbye. At some pageants, the contestants return to X1 to exit. If this is the case, goodbye waves are in order here.

The amount of time each contestant spends on time is important, and it’s a careful balancing act. You want the contestant to be there long enough for the judges to get a good look at her, but you don’t want to overstay your welcome, so to speak.

Be aware that sometimes you’ll run into an inexperienced pageant emcee or announcer who tries to hurry the contestants off stage too quickly. Try to teach your child to complete her entire routine, regardless of whether the announcer has finished talking or not.

You need to practice the stage walk at home until your child knows it well. Get the basics down first before you start focusing on smiling, personality, and poise. You can add these once she knows the pattern well.

I have a raised front porch on my house, and this is where my granddaughter always practiced her pageant stage walk. We put down Xs with tape and sat in front of the porch, in the same spot the judges would be sitting during an actual pageant.

Little Girls' Pageant Dresses - The Right Style and Fit

The most gorgeous, glitzy pageant dresses in the world won't score well if they're not a perfect fit on the wearers. When it comes to little girls' pageant dresses, the bodice of the dress should fit snugly, with no obvious gaps. It shouldn't be so tight, however, that the child's flesh is bulging out. Look closely for this around the arm openings and across the top of the bodice.

The length of the dress is important, too. Girls under the age of ten should generally wear a short dress in a glitz pageant. These pageant dresses should have multi-layered cupcake skirts that are fingertip length.

The bodice of the dress should have decorations or adornments on it, along with lots of small Swarovski rhinestones. Most little girls' pageant dresses for glitz pageants have a bodice that's made of Superstretch. Be careful about the placement of large bows and other large embellishments. Don't have them placed too close to the face. You don't want to chance anything's obscuring the child's face or detracting the judges' attention away from the little girl's face. Bigger is not always better!

The back of the dress should be beautiful, too. The judges are going to view the entire dress when the contestant does her turns, so keep that in mind when selecting a pageant dress. Many pageant moms like the little girls' pageant dresses that lace up the back because it makes it easy to get a perfect fit.

Little Girls' Pageant Dresses - The Best Color

You know how important having the right pageant dress is for glitz pageants, right? Sure you do. Otherwise, you probably wouldn't be reading this. In typical glitz beauty pageants, the dress is sort of judged twice - once in the dress category and once in the overall appearance category.

When choosing a pageant dress for your child, there are several things that you need to take into consideration: overall style, fit, design, and color. The first three are fairly easy to figure out, but color is often a big question. The color of glitz pageant dresses has to enhance the natural coloring of the contestants to get the best scores.

Some of the most popular colors for little girls' glitz pageant dresses are bubble gum pink, Barbie pink, fuchsia pink, different shades of blue, light teal, peach, orange, tangerine, light turquoise, yellow, pale green, and white. Combinations of two or more colors are often seen, too.

Just because the above colors are the most popular doesn't mean that your daughter would look good in all these colors and shades. The dress has to "match" your child. For example, a fuchsia pink pageant dress might be gorgeous on a blonde, but it probably wouldn't look good on a redhead. Just because you see a drop-dead pageant dress that looks amazing in photographs or when it's on another child doesn't mean that it's going to look as stunning on your little princess.

I'm often asked what the best dress color is, and there's no hard and fast answer. It depends on the individual child. If I had to choose one color, I'd have to say white or white in combination with another color. BUT...not every pageant girl can wear white. It usually works best on girls who have naturally dark complexions, including African Americans, Asians, Hispanics, and caucasians with dark hair and skin. For girls with lighter coloring, white will do little more than wash them out when they're on stage and under the bright lights.

As I mentioned already, African American girls often look gorgeous in white. Actually, they can often get away with wearing almost any color. You see a lot of these girls in peach, orange, yellow, and tangerine. These vibrant hues really stand out on African American girls.

Asian and Hispanic girls look good in a wide range of colors and shades, too. Winning girls with this tyoe of coloring often wear peach, orange, light blue, or yellow.

Brunette caucasian girls with medium to dark skin tones often do well in light turquoise, bubble gum pink, yellow, pale teal, or one or more of these colors in combination with white.

Blondes are sometimes harder to pinpoint because there are so many different shades of blonde hair. A girl who has almost platinum hair and a girl with dark blonde hair that's almost a light brown are both considered as blondes. In general, a good place to start with blondes is to consider glitz pageant dresses in light to medium blue, fuchsia pink, or even pale lavender. Lavender might be a little risky, but there have been a few national winning blondes with pageant dresses in pale lavender.

Redheads are more limited in the colors they can wear. These girls often look best in light green or shades of blue. I once saw a redhead wearing a blue dress that was a dark royal blue, and the judges loved it.

Some contestants in glitz beauty pageants get rather daring with their choices in dress color. For example, I've seen girls wear red, gold, ivory, and bronze. Some of these contestants got rave reviews from the judges, while others didn't. Wearing an unusual color is often a gamble. It seems that the judges either hate these dresses or love them, with little in between.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Casual Wear Ideas

Lots of kids' beauty pageants offer a casual wear category, which are sometimes optional. In other words, you might not be required to enter, but if the pageant includes supreme titles, casual wear will usually be a part of the overall score. If supreme titles are up for grabs, you don't want to opt out of casual wear. Besides, casual wear events are fun!

One of the major problems with casual wear is coming up with ideas for unique outfits, and you definitely want something unique. Creativity is usually a big part of the casual wear score. With that in mind, you understand why it's important to wow the judges with something different.

Depending on the specific pageant and on the type of pageant it is, casual wear has a huge range. It might include something as conservative and preppy as a schoolgirl outfit, with a plaid tennis skirt, knee socks, heeled loafers, and a blazer or sweater, to something as wild as a biker chick look. Of course, there are lots of outfits in between, too.

Do a little research before deciding on a look for casual wear. Many pageants post photos of previous winners, including winners from the casual wear event. This will give you an idea of which types of casual wear outfits might work.

You might want to somewhat "match" potential casual wear outfits to your daughter's personality and to how she might want to act on stage. If you want to go for the "sweet look," consider ruffled baby doll tops and matching ruffled capris in bright colors and whimsical prints. Another popular look is the sailor-girl casual wear outfits.

For a "tough look," think about mini skirts, short shorts, and midriffs in black or black with anaccent color with leather boots that have matching boot toppers.

You might want to go with a "funky" look. For this, take a look at the outfits on some of the Bratz dolls.

Another popular look for pageant wear outfits is the "retro" look from the fifties and sixties: poddle skirts, car hop outfits, go-go girl outfits, and hippy-type outfits.

For a Western look, consider jazzed-up cowboy outfits: sequined hats, boots with rhinestone or glitter accents, and fringed armbands.

For a more exotic look, think about jungle wear. I've seen some impressive, unique casual wear outfits with a jungle theme, including a great headhunter-inspired outfit.

Have fun with casual wear outfits! Consider suspenders, newsboy caps, sailor hats, ties, scarves, leather jackets, sweaters, shrugs - just about anything goes in most glitz pageants!

Watch these videos to get some more ideas for casual wear:


Get the Most from a Spray Tan

For glitz beauty pageants, you'll probably need to have your child tanned, unless she's an infant. Why is this so important? Because the bright stage lights can make even a girl with natural medium skin tones can look pale. Sunless tanning gives a sunkissed look without any damaging effects from UV light.

Even if your child has a naturally dark complexion, a spray tan can provide a

n extra glow and even out the skin tone. My niece is Asian, so she already has beautiful light-brown skin, but a spray tan or other form of sunless tanning really makes her skin "pop" on stage.

If you're not experienced with do-it-yourself spray tans, don't experiment with it just before a beauty pageant. The results can be disastrous. Instead, hire a professional spray tan person. Sometimes your hair and makeup person will also do spray tans for contestants.

Don't have your child spray tanned too far in advance of the pageant. I realize that many spray tan facilities claim that the tan will look great for several days, but in reality, this isn't usually the case. Depending on the individual, the spray tan can begin to look blotchy within just a day or two. Sunless tanners "tan" only the top layer of skin cells, and these cells are constantly sloughing off and being replaced by new ones, which won't be "tanned." Most pageant moms agree that the optimum time to spray tan is the night before the pageant.

Before having a spray tan, the child should bathe and exfoliate - especially the legs. Removing dead skin cells will provide much better sunless tanning results. This can be done with a scrub or a loofah. DO NOT apply any lotions or creams.

I learned from a spray tan expert that a girl who's spent some time in the sun just prior to getting the spray tan will have better results because dry skin will "soak up" more sunless tanner.

When you get the spray tan done, think twice about tanning the face. Many contestants don't have their face applied with any type of sunless tanner. Instead, they count on their makeup artist to match the face to the neck and body with foundation or powder.

On the day of the pageant, if your daughter looks "ashy," apply a tiny bit of lotion to her legs just before going on stage. To do this, place a small amount of lotion in your palm and rub your hands together. Then just run your palms over your child's legs. Don't overdo it. You don't want the legs to be shiny - you just want them to look slightly glistening.

How to Save Money on Glitz Pageant Dresses

Have you priced glitz pageant dresses for toddlers and glitz pageant dresses for little girls? Many winning dresses are custom made and can cost around $2,000. That's for a dress that includes hundreds of Swarovski stones, and a choker and hairbow usually come with the dress. That's still A LOT of money. If you don't have that kind of cash to spend on pageant dresses, you might like one of the following ideas.

One way is to buy a dress that doesn't have any stoning and stone it yourself. We've done this a couple of times for my granddaughter and my niece and have had excellent results. As a matter of fact, my best friend and I stoned the white dress in the attached photo, and I don't think it ever lost a competition. To get step-by-step instructions on how to stone a dress, follow this link:http://hubpages.com/hub/How-to-Stone-a-Dress

Another idea is to buy a used pageant dress. Ebay and some of the pageant boards always have pageant dresses for sale. Many of them will have stains on the inside from tanning, but don't let this put you off. In just about every case, the stains cannot be seen when the child is on stage. When you're buying a dress without tryingit on, pay very close attention to the measurements posted. Many sellers do not accept returns.

Here's something else I did once that worked out well. I found a used pageant dress that had a gorgeous bodice but an unimpressive skirt. Fortunately, it was a two-piece dress, so the skirt could be detached. I found a lady who made pageant dresses and paid her to make us a new skirt. We attached the new skirt to the used dress, and viola - a beautiful glitz pageant dress!

Even a good used pageant dress that's going to be competitve might cost more money than you want to pay. In that case, consider renting a pageant dress. In most areas, you can do this for anywhere from $50 to $100. A pageant director or a pageant coach can probably give you information about renting pageant dresses.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Choosing the Right Toddler Pageant Dresses

Pageant dresses are extremely important for competitions. Not only is the dress usually scored heavily all on its own, it's also a big part of overall appearance, which also usually comprises a hefty percentage of the overall score. With this in mind, you'll see why it's so important to select the right pageant dresses for little girls.

In natural pageants, flower girl dresses are often appropriate, unless

the pageant requires all the girls to wear the same outfit. If this is the case, your entry fee will usually include a tee shirt for your child to wear with a pair of jeans.

For many small local pageants that are non-glitz or low glitz, a party dress or Sunday school might be all you need. For glitz beauty pageants, however, you'll need a high glitz pageant dress.

Glitz pageant dresses for little girls might be in one piece or two pieces. The two-piece pageant dresses are often easier to adjust as far as the size is concerned, and this is important. You can have the most beautiful and most expensive pageant dress in the world, but if it doesn't fit your child well, it's not going to score high. The bodice should be snug, and the dress length should come to the child's fingertips.

Glitz toddler pageant dresses should have full cupcake skirts, with several layers. These skirts stand out on their own, so you won't need a crinoline to wear underneath. The edges of the skirt layers have a "fishline" hem that makes the edges wavy. The skirt layers can be all the same color or different colors.

Glitz pageant dresses for toddlers should be decorated with lace, dangles, and/or bows, and lots of Swarovski rhinestones. Big clunky stones are largely a thing of the past. The trend now is to use hundreds of smaller stones instead. One large stone, like say a heart-shaped stone on the bodice, is okay. Most winning dresses have a combination of crystal stones, aurora borealis stones, and colored stones that match the dress or the trim on the dress.

Color is just as important as a proper fit. Some people simply look better in certain colors. As far as toddler pageant dresses are concerned, white is often hard to beat - IF the child can wear white successfully. Not all girls can. On a girl with a pale complexion, white will wash them out. You want a color that will make the child "pop." In other words, you want a dress that really compliments the color of her eyes, hair, and skin.

If you're trying on pageant dresses in a store or boutique, keep in mind that the dress might look very different on your child once she's tanned and is wearing makeup.

In the photo that accompanies this section of my pageant blog or pageant guide, you'll see one of my granddaughters wearing a light turquoise and white glitz pageant dress. This was a winning color combination for her. She has naturally dark skin, dark brown eyes, and brown hair, so the dress was beautiful on her and she often won prettiest dress in addition to winning many pageants with the dress. I wish I could have saved the dress for her younger sister, but she has a light complexion and blonde hair, so I knew the dress wouldn't look as good on her.

When you're shopping for toddler pageant dresses, take notice of the back of the dress, too. After all, the judges will be judging the entire dress - not just the front.

If you're not quite ready to invest in a brand new pageant dress, you might want to consider renting one. You can also find used pageant dresses for toddlers, which are substantially cheaper than a new dress.

If you get serious about beauty pageants, you'll probably want to have a pageant dress custom made for your child. These pageant dresses are very expensive, but if you choose to go this route, you'll be sure that the dress fits your child perfectly. Also, the dress will be unique, so it won't be one the judges are tired of seeing.

Infant Pageant Dresses

The type of infant pageant dresses you should be choosing from depends on the type of pageant you'll be doing. For a natural pageant, a simple flower girl-type dress will work. For a low glitz local pageant, you'll most likely be able to use a party-type dress. For a full-glitz pageant, however, you'll need a fancier dress.

Infant pageant dresses for high-glitz pageants should have a full cupcake skirt with several layers. The skirt should be short. For the right length, stretch the baby's arms and fingers out to full length. The dress should be fingertip length. You'll also need a diaper cover that matches the dress.

The bodice should have a snug fit and be adorned with embellishments. These might be in the form of lace, bows, etc. The dress should also be stoned with Swarovski rhinestones. For infant pageant dresses, the rhinestones should be small. None of the decorations on the dress should overpower the baby's face.

You'll also need a matching hairbow or a headband with an attached bow. Again, the bow shouldn't be so large that it takes attention away from the face. If you can't find a bow and headband to match the dress exactly, purchase a white bow and dye it yourself. Add a few tiny stones to the bow. White mary janes and lacy white ankle socks complete the look.

Infant pageant dresses and baby pageant dresses seem to score better if they have short sleeves. Of course, this depends entirely on the judges you'll be facing, but from my experience, sleeveless infant pageant dresses and baby pageant dresses don't seem to score as high.

Be careful when you're choosing a dress color. Babies aren't normally tanned, so the choices of colors is somewhat limited when it comes to pageant dresses for babies. Unless the baby has naturally dark skin, a white dress will completely wash the infant out on stage under the bright lights. Baby pageant with a little white on them with other colors is usually fine. Pink is usually a good color for baby pageant dresses. It's sweet, girly, and it will go well with a wide range of complexions. Baby blue might also look good on your baby. Yellow pageant dresses look good on some baby girls, especially those with darker coloring.

Toddler Pageants for Little Boys?

What do you think about entering boys into toddler pageants? Sometimes there's a stigma attached to this practice, which I think is totally unfair. Two of my grandsons were in toddler pageants when they were younger, and they loved it. Much of the resistance to putting little boys in pageants seems to come from the fathers. They're afraid the boys will become or be viewed as "sissies" for being in a "beauty"


Natural beauty is not restricted to females. Many little boys are beautiful, too. And besides, as you've probably already figured out, toddler beauty pageants aren't all about looks. Personality and stage presence play a big part.

Why do I think the "sissy stigma" is unfair? Well, I largely base this on my grandsons. Both are 100% boy. They love fishing, camping, playing sports, and target shooting. They're both rough-and-tumble kids who aren't afraid of anything. Just because they put on a tux and enjoy the limelight on stage doesn't make any less male.

Actually, it's a heck of a lot easier to put a boy in toddler pageants than it is a little girl. Boys don't have to have makeup, pageant hair, jewelry, or a fancy dress. We never had to tan the boys for toddler beauty pageants, either.

In toddler pageants, boys aren't expected to be "prissy." They can easily get away with acting tough and/or cocky on stage, and the judges will usually eat it up.

Personality Points in Toddler Pageants

If you're thinking of entering your son or daughter in toddler pageants, you need to be aware of the importance of personality - the points awarded by the judges for onstage personality. With toddler pageants, personality is usually more important that poise. Many judges had rather see a toddler having fun on stage and exhibiting personality than they would seeing a toddler stiff, robotic, and "programmed."

So what can you do to ensure good personality scores in toddler pageants? First of all, make sure your child is comfortable on stage and is having a good time. This should be immediately evident to the judges. My granddaughter won her very first pageant as a two-year-old, against seasoned girls who had done numerous toddler pageants. She wasn't as polished as some of the other contestants, but it was obvious that she was having a blast on stage. She giggled, smiled a lot, and just acted a little silly. When her mom got her to turn for the judges, she twirled around several times instead of just once.

My grandsons always scored well in personality in toddler pageants, too. They did things like wink, blow kisses, wave to the audience, and acted a little cocky. One always drew his imaginary pistols from his hips, "fired" them into the air, and blew them out when he was directly in front of the judges. He came up with this move on his own, and I wasn't sure how it would play out, but it worked well. This brings up my next point.

Allow your child to help make some of the decisions about his or her stage performance in toddler pageants. If you do, he or she will have a sense of ownership and will probably be more comfortable on stage. Besides, sometimes kids come up with some great ideas!

Beauty Pageant Tips - Baby Pageants

If you think child beauty pageants might be something enjoyable for you and your child, you can start her out as a baby. If she seems to enjoy the attention and being in front of an audience as a baby at bay pageants, chances are that she'll like it even more as she gets older. If started early, she'll become comfortable with the whole beauty pageants experience.

Actually, entering a baby in baby pageants is much easier than dealing with older kids. You won't have to worry about makeup, pageant hair, tanning, or modeling. You will, however, still need a great pageant dress, a hair band with an attached bow, and the right shoes and socks.

A typical glitz pageant dress is in order - one with a cupcake skirt and some stoning. For some reason, my pageant pals and I have noticed that dreeses with short sleeves usually do better than sleeveless dresses on babies. Also, make sure the bow and hairband or headband don't overpower the baby's small face. Use white lace ankle socks and white mary jane shoes.

In baby pageants, your baby will most likely be scored on natural beauty, dress, and personality. It's hard to score a baby on poise, so personality is extremely important. This means that the contestant needs to be happy and smiling. Giggling on stage would be even better!

Arrange the baby's nap time and feeding time around the pageant schedule. Learn the schedule in advance and be prepared. for example, if your baby usually takes a nap at 2 p.m. and the pageant starts then, make sure your little one gets a good nap in before you have to be at the pageant. You can do this by starting several days before the day of the pageant by gradually changing the baby's nap time. GRADUALLY is the key word here. The same goes for feeding times.

You might also want to choose child pageants for your baby based on the age divisions. It's often difficult for a baby to compete with toddlers who can walk, wave, wink, and blow kisses. My ten-month-old granddaughter will be doing her first pageant in a couple of weeks, and she'll be in the 0-12 months age division. I don't thik we'd put her in a pageant now where the age division was 0-24 months. It would be hard for her to compete with the older kids. That's not to say that it's impossible for a baby to win against toddlers - sometimes they do - I'm just saying it will be tougher.

Practice getting your baby to smile and/or clap on cue at home. You might use a small toy, a silly face, or a hand puppet. Be careful, however, not to use the strategy so often that the baby no longer finds the prompt interesting or humorous.

When you're on stage, cock up one of your legs so that the baby can rest on your thigh. Spread the back of the skirt of the dress behind the baby, sort of on your midriff. Whisper to her, tickle the back of her neck - anything you can do to elicit a smile or laugh. If your baby is light enough, you might want to fold one of your arms across your chest and rest her on your forearm.

Child beauty pageants pros and cons

So you think you want to enter your child in a beauty pageant? Or perhaps you're just curious about child pageants after watching related shows on television. As a "pageant Nana" and as a former certified pageant judge, I can honestly say that I've seen the best and the worst of the beauty pageant world. Two of my granddaughters, two of my grandsons, and my niece have all been involved with child beauty pageants, on the local, state, and natio

nal level.

The cons of child beauty pageants

Child beauty pageants, or any beauty pageants, for that matter, can be wonderful or terrible, or somewhere in between. Much of it depends on the pageant director and the pageant moms or pageant parents.

Let's start with the pageant director. She's in charge of choosing the prizes, choosing qualified and impartial judges, and managing the beauty pageant. A good director will make sure that the pageant runs smoothly and efficiently. She'll also ensure that all the events are held on time. A good Pageant director will choose judges who know what to look for and are fair in their assessments of the contestants.

Many of the cons associated with child beauty pageants are related to the pageant moms or pageant parents or grandparents. Child beauty pageants can be a frightening experience for some kids. They don't want to get all dressed up and parade in front of an audience of strangers. If your child doesn't really want to do a pageant, she should never be forced to do so. Child beauty pageants should be something the kid wants to do - not something the parent wants to do.

If you do enough pageants, you're likely to encounter a few bad pageant moms. Thankfully, from my experience, these are few and far between, but they do exist. When their child doesn't win, they blame everyone - the judges, the director, the other pageant moms, and even sometimes the other contestants. You might also see some bad winners. These pageant moms can be rude and nasty even when their child wins.

If a little girl or boy enters a pageant with the wrong attitude, they can be emotionally hurt when they don't win. The child's attitude is learned from the parent. The kids need to see pageants as fun and exciting and not focus solely on winning.

Other cons of child beauty pageants include the monetary cost and the amount of time involved. Pageants can be super expensive. For glitz beauty pageants, you'll need a wiglet or fall, a glitz pageant dress, a hairbow, a choker, professional pageant photos, and the right shoes and socks. To be truly competitive, your child might also need modeling lessons and a pageant coach. You'll also need to hire a hair and makeup person for the pageant, along with someone to tan your child. Of course, on top of all this, you'll have to pay the pageant entry fee. If the pageant is out of town, you'll have to include travel costs, too.

Your child will have to practice on a regular basis for pageants - unless, of course, your entering a baby. Even toddlers will be expected to "perform" on stage in most larger glitz pageants.

Pros of child beauty pageants

Child beauty pageants can be very rewarding experiences. My group loves doing beauty pageants and just can't seem to get enough of them! My granddaughters haven't done one in a while, and they're constantly begging me to be in another pageant. My youngest granddaughter, who's ten months old, will be entering her first beauty pageant in two weeks. My niece, who's fourteen, is still very involved in pageants and does them on a regular basis.

Why do our kids love child beauty pageants? The younger girls say they feel like princesses in their pageant dresses. They love all the attention and being fussed over. One is a natural ham and adores the stage and the applause of the crowd.

Kids can gain a lot of self-confidence from child beauty pageants. They learn to be comfortable in front of an audience, and they learn to be comfortable talking to adults.

Child pageants are also a great way for kids to make new friends. The younger girls are rarely competitive with each other, and I've often seen them root for other kids - even those in the same age division. They have loads of fun playing with each other backstage.

Other pros of child beauty pageants are the wonderful prizes awarded. Of course, these vary from pageant to pageant. Some of the prizes offered might include trophies, crowns, sashes, crowning pins, money, savings bonds, toys, stuffed animals, iPods, televisions, cameras, trips, DVD players, modeling lessons, jewelry, luggage, monogrammed robes, and furniture for kids' rooms.