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What is the Difference Between Natural & Glitz Pageants?

08, February 2015

Natural and glitz pageants are different types of beauty pageants that differ in various aspects. Glitz pageants focus far more on the external beauty of contestants than natural, allowing young contestants to wear hairpieces like extensions or wigs; full faces of stage makeup; false eyelashes, nails and teeth (flippers); dark spray tans; as well as colored contacts.

The main differences between natural and glitz pageants are as follows:

Age range 

Natural pageants typically range from birth to 18 years old, while in glitz pageants usually participate children from 0-12 years old.

Makeup and hair

Natural pageants encourage minimal makeup and hair products, and glitz pageants allow for heavy makeup, fake eyelashes, and hair extensions.

Clothing and costumes

Regarding clothes, natural pageants are all about comfort. It is recommended that contestants wear something that matches their eye color and fancy flats. That's all! Also, in this kind of pageant, participants are encouraged to wear age-appropriate clothing that is not too revealing. 

On the contrary, in glitz pageants, the participants wear elaborate costumes and outfits, often heavily embellished with sequins, rhinestones, and other decorations. Thus glitz pageant dresses can be very puffy and uncomfortable, especially for toddler pageant contestants.


Natural pageants typically require participants to showcase an age-appropriate and not overly elaborate talent. In contrast, glitz pageants often feature complex dance routines and singing performances. Many talent presentations may require a lot of training and preparation, even hiring a professional pageant coach. 

Also, natural pageants focus on embracing communication and social features; contestants on glitz pageants must perform physically challenging. 

Overall atmosphere

Natural pageants aim to promote natural beauty and confidence in participants, while glitz pageants often have a more competitive atmosphere and focus on creating a visually stunning and glamorous appearance.

Entry fee

Glitz pageants' entry fees can range from $50 to $500, and natural pageants are far less expensive, with entry fees ranging from $80 to $200.

Despite their differences, natural and glitz pageants cater to different audiences and have distinct styles and requirements.


Brooklynn Minnis. Photo and Hair and Makeup: Toni Overby

Natural Beauty Pageants Overview

Natural Beauty Pageants are beauty contests emphasizing a more wholesome and age-appropriate approach to children's pageantry. 

Some of the key aspects of natural pageants are their emphasis on talent rather than physical appearance. They encourage children to develop confidence, self-esteem, and public speaking skills through performing a talent, such as singing, dancing, or playing an instrument. 

They may also be asked to answer questions or give a speech, which allows them to showcase their personality and communication skills.

The specific requirements for natural kids pageants may vary depending on the competition and its organizers. However, in general, here are some common requirements that may be expected:

  • Age range

Natural kids pageants are typically open to children between 0 and 12, although some may have different age categories and can go up to 18 years.

  • Eligibility

Contestants must meet the eligibility criteria, including a residency in a specific location, no prior history of criminal or unethical behavior, and adherence to the pageant's rules and regulations.

  • Natural appearance

Natural kid's pageants are typically focused on celebrating the natural beauty of children, so contestants are expected to maintain a natural appearance without heavy makeup, hair extensions, or special costumes.

  • Talent or performance

Many natural kid pageants include a talent or performance component, such as singing, dancing, or reciting a poem.

  • Interview

Some pageants may include an interview component where the contestant is judged on their ability to articulate their thoughts and opinions on various topics.

  • Parental involvement

Parental involvement is typically required in natural kids' pageants, as parents are often responsible for preparing their child for the competition, including costume selection, practice, and coaching.

  • Entry fee

There may be an entry fee required to participate in the competition, which may vary depending on the pageant's location, size, and level of competition.

These competitions make children's beauty pageants less stressful and more approachable. 

Glitz Beauty Pageants Overview

Participants in glitz pageants are judged on their physical beauty, personality, and other qualities such as talent and intelligence. While pageants have been around for centuries, glitz pageants are a more recent phenomenon that began in the United States in the 1960s.

Glitz pageants are characterized by their emphasis on glamor and glitz. Participants often wear sparkly dresses, tiaras, fake teeth, and other accessories. 

They must wear professional makeup and have their hair styled in different ways. Professional pageant headshots heavily edit the photos and give the contestant an unreal and artificial look. 

As we said, these types of child beauty pageants have a strong focus on glamor, beauty, and showmanship and typically require the following:

  • Age eligibility

Glitz pageants are open to contestants of all ages but may have specific age categories (typically ranging from newborns to around 14 years of age).

  • Entry fees

Contestants are required to pay an entry fee to participate in the pageant.

  • Clothing

Glitz pageants often require contestants to wear expensive, elaborately designed and decorated clothing, such as ball gowns, cocktail dresses, or swimsuits.

  • Hair and makeup

Contestants are expected to have professionally done hair and makeup, which may require extensions, wigs, and fake eyelashes.

  • Talent

While talent is not always a requirement, some glitz pageants may have a talent portion where contestants showcase their abilities in singing, dancing, or other performance arts.

  • Personality

Judges may also evaluate contestants' poise, confidence, and personality, including interviewing and communication skills.

Even though it might look slightly controversial, many people find glitz pageants a fun and creative way to engage their kids in competitive activities.


1 thoughts on “What is the Difference Between Natural & Glitz Pageants?”

Beian Lu [email protected]

What are some glitz pageants in the pageant system. I can't tell from just look at pageant website

July 24, 2022

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