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Pageat Interview Queen

Frown to Perfect Pageant Gown

Not sure what to wear for the evening wear portion of the pageant?  Turn that frown into your dream gown by following these simple tips.

Evening gowns are important for a couple reasons.  Whatever you win in becomes your signature look.  Nothing else you wear during your pageant year will be even half as memorable as your look in evening gown.  Guaranteed.  Evening gown is also the pageant judging portion where most contestants feel their best and like the princess their five year old self always wanted to be.

Before we get started, there is something we could all remember when it comes to choosing our evening gowns.  I know you don’t want to hear it, and I certainly did not want to hear it either (at first), but it is the truth:  there will always be someone to hate your gown and someone to love it.  Isn’t that a little like life though?  There will always be someone to approve of our actions just as there will always be someone to disagree with them.  And who says pageants aren’t relevant to real life? ;)

Back to the point.  When you are picking a pageant evening gown there are a few things to remember.  Starting with the most important…

Does your dress fit your personality?

Style.  Your dress truly needs to be a representation of yourself.  If you want the pageant judges to remember your softer side, you probably do not want to go with a dress with a high slit, low neckline, and lots of sheer material.  That would be silly.  Why?  The look just described is better for someone with a little more spunk or wanting to come across as sexy.  Before you even start the hunt for your gown, make a list of adjectives describing how you want to come across in your gown (warm, graceful, classic, bold, unique, sexy, etc.)

Color.  Color is another extremely important aspect when it comes to choosing the proper gown for you.  Whatever style you choose, it is important that you get it in a color that compliments your hair and skin tone.  Some colors, as much as we love them, just do not look good on us.  Been there.  Done that.  However, there are some colors that we tend to stay away from that actually look great on us on stage!  Been there.  Done that too.  When I was growing up, sometime along the way, I was told I should never wear the color red because I have red hair.  So for years, I did not own a single thing in my closet that was red!  Then one day, while I was searching for my next gown, I came across a beautiful red Mac Duggal and knew it had my name on it… or on the label.  This gown has worked well for me and taught me that every color deserves a second chance.

Is it appropriate?

Ah.  This one is always a little difficult.  I think it is always best to error a little more on the conservative side rather than too risqué especially when you do not know how conservative your judges are.  It is also important to be aware of the system you are competing in.  Have you looked at the gowns of past pageant winner?  Were their dresses modest or revealing?  What about those who placed in the top 5?  I recommend going through the past three years of photos to get a better idea.

It is also important to consider your age division and the level of the pageant.  The bigger the pageant, the more you can get away with revealing gowns. However, even if you are a teen at a national pageant, it is a good idea to still keep your look conservative.

How does it make you feel?

When you step into your gown, do you want to feel like Beyoncé or Kate Middleton?  Cinderella, perhaps?  Either way, when you wear your gown, you should be feeling your best- you deserve it!  It is the portion of the competition where you can sit back (or stand up in those tall heels) and enjoy your moment.

Can you see yourself winning in it?

So you’re thinking to yourself that this could be the gown.  Now, the next step is to picture yourself wearing it and being crowned the pageant titleholder.  Can you see it?  Speaking from personal experience, often times I get to this step and realize this is not the dress for me.  Maybe it is too plain or too “out there” but I just get a feeling that it is time to move on and find a new dress.

Is it a good investment?

You’re almost ready for commitment!  You have talked it over with your family or friends and now you look at the price tag to see how it works with your budget.  I forgot to talk about this.  YOU MUST HAVE A BUDGET BEFORE YOU START SHOPPING.  YOU MUST.  A $6,000 gown will always look better than a $100 one.  But, is it worth the difference?  Are you willing to break the bank to win this title?  If so, I say go after the gown of your dreams!  If you are like me and compete for the sake of earning scholarships, spending such excessive amounts on a dress is just not a wise investment.

Before investing in a gown, you also need to decide how long you want to use it for.  Is this for a single pageant or are you hoping to make it your gown for the next 3 years?  If you align yourself more to the latter, it may be best to choose a more timeless style so that you will still look trendy in a few years.

Best of luck with your shopping!