Miss Teen USA is Getting Rid of Their Swimsuits Competition

This year is all about breaking the mold of the traditional beauty pageant queens, from the first openly gay contestant Miss Missouri Erin O’Flaherty to the first Army officer crowned Miss USA 2016 Deshauna Barber. Now it’s Miss Teen USA’s turn. The Miss Universe organization has replaced the Miss Teen USA swimsuit showcase with a totally new athletic wear competition.

Why? The swimsuit competition is used to highlight athleticism and physical health. But for years, it has gotten backlash over its seeming exhibition of the pageant participants. The Miss Universe organization hopes that this new transition to athletic wear will still promote the importance of physical fitness without the feeling of exploitation. They openly support ideas of feminism and equality, and they’re taking action to prove it.

Miss Universe president Paula Shugart tells USA Today that “This decision reflects an important cultural shift we’re all celebrating that empowers women who lead active, purposeful lives and encourage those in their communities to do the same. Our hope is that this decision will help all of Miss Teen USA’s fans recognize these young women for the strong, inspiring individuals they are.”

The Miss Teen USA pageant 2016 will be held in Las Vegas on July 30th. We’ll definitely be tuning in.

[H/T: E! Online]

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