Miss England contestant breaks convention by wearing wetsuit
A Miss England finalist went against pageant protocol by submitting photographs of herself wearing a wetsuit for the optional swimsuit round.
Aysha Khan, 21 from Blackburn, Lancashire, was the only contestant out of 49 others to choose a full-body swimsuit, earning herself a position in the top 20.
She made the decision to submit the images of her wearing the full body swimsuit to show you don’t have to wear a bikini to feel confident.
The swimsuit round was officially banned in 2010 after it was described as a “parade on stage”.
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Contestants are still able to enter an optional Miss Beach Beauty round. As well as this round there are 10 other optional rounds a contestant can enter in a bid to become fast-tracked into the top 20 of the Miss England competition.
“I wanted to push forward the message that swimwear doesn’t necessarily mean a bikini.” Khan said in her Instagram post.
“Empowerment can be felt in many different ways and can be promoted in many different ways. Some women may feel more confident showing more skin and some women feel more confident showing less - the message being; empowerment is a personal feeling, and not wearing a bikini does not mean I am not confident about my body.”
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When she found out her take on the Miss Beach Beauty round had earned her a spot in the top 20, she said she was “shocked to say the least”.
Khan will now go on to compete in the Miss England final on 1 August in Newcastle.
The reaction to her alternative swimsuit has been overwhelmingly positive. People have taken to her Facebook page to praise her for her body positive message.
“Love your message Aysha! So happy that your experience through Miss Lancashire and Miss England shows you for who you are.” One fan wrote.
“Good for you! Always be true to yourself.” Another agreed.