Mrs South Dakota International posing with crown. Pageant VideosJessica Beal-Bahmuller, Mrs. South Dakota International 2016, is just as impressive as she is beautiful. What’s her secret? Constantly improving her skills by watching pageant videos.

Welcome to part two of how to analyze and improve yourself as a contestant using pageant videos.  If you didn’t catch my last post, just click here to catch up.  If you did, and you’ve already started analyzing your last pageant, here’s part 2 of how to be your own pageant coach by critiquing your pageant performance.

4. Watch your facial expressions while modeling and answering questions on-stage. Make sure you don’t look nervous or have a blank stare while modeling or standing in your line-up.  The most important thing is to look like you’re having fun, not as though you’re bored or feel that being on-stage is pure torture!  Beauty queens always display a pleasant, relaxed expression on-stage.  So whether your answering onstage pageant interview questions or modeling in your gown, make sure you’re smiling no matter how you feel on stage!

5. Pay attention to your grammar skills and articulation. You can be amazingly perfect in every way when working the stage, but if you answer pageant interview questions by mumbling or display poor grammar skills, you’re probably not going to leave with the crown.  If you’re still in school, pay attention during your English and Communications classes and focus on developing good speaking habits.  If you’re no longer in school, get some feedback from family and friends.  Don’t be afraid to hire a pageant coach to help you improve your speaking skills.  People will automatically think you’re one smart cookie who’s ready for the title if you display solid public speaking and communication skills!

6. Write down six things you did well.   The biggest mistake most contestants make when watching their own pageant videos thinking they did everything wrong.  Make sure you identify and celebrate your successes!  Even if it’s your very first pageant and you didn’t make the semi-final group, you probably did several things well.  Write down what you did well with red marker on an index card and keep it in plain sight.  That will give you some positive motivation for your next pageant!

7. Write down three things you would like to improve.  Whether you’re advancing to the next competition level or returning next year to the same pageant, identify three areas in which you’d like to improve.  Then when you’re preparing for your pageant, review your notes and take action to improve in those areas.  Maybe you need to take a couple of modeling lessons or just spend more time brushing up on your current events.  There’s always room for improvement.  Remember: just because you’re the prima ballerina, doesn’t mean you can stop taking dance lessons!

8. Now incorporate what you’ve learned into the prep plan for your next pageant. Generally speaking, successful contestants allow a minimum of four to six months to prepare for their pageant.  That gives you plenty of time to shop for a fabulous wardrobe, work on your physical fitness, develop your public speaking skills, and improve your overall pageant performance.  Just set your goals, develop your action plan, and your next pageant video will reflect your improvement!