It is a common knowledge in the United States that the Southern States – the former Confederacy – normally perform well at beauty pageants when compared to their Northern sisters. There are many factors as to why Southern states have a better chance of winning the national beauty pageant title.  Maybe it’s the Southern hospitality and charm. Or perhaps the conservative ideals when it comes to beauty and women. But definitely that exotic racial make-up from Texas to Virginia plays a major role!


What is definite however is that the Northern States are the first to get tired of beauty pageant because they tend to have liberal values and beauty pageants are not really seen as something that empowers women. The Southern States meanwhile cultivates values that are more attuned with traditional concepts of pageantry. No wonder that the most successful state at Miss USA is in the Deep South – Texas. Meanwhile, the clappers among the clappers happens to be a Northerner state – Delaware.


But that conventional knowledge is being challenged lately. For 5 straight years, Northerner states are winning! In 2010, an Arab woman from Michigan beat an all-American blonde from Oklahoma. This seems like a turning point for Miss USA and that the conversation regarding race and religion now resonates in the pageantry world.

Alyssa Campanella, Ashley Elizabeth Durham


In 2011, the deep-blue state of California won over the deep-red state of  Tennessee. While the south dominated the Top 5, a western state known as the home of the country’s most liberal city simply beat all of them!



In 2012, the tiny and Catholic-dominated state of Rhode Island won for the first time ever and by 2013, the Northern state of Connecticut beat the Southern state of Alabama.



So what does the trend tells us? The truth is, it is too early to predict if the South is losing its touch. The Miss USA trend tends to be cyclical and similar periods of drought happened to the Southern states before and they always bounce back. What is good about this is that at least, the victory is being spread across the nation and that there is no domination by any region whatsoever.  This 2014 will be a good year to see if the trend will continue. Will another Northerner win? Or a drop dead gorgeous Southerner will snatch the crown?





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