Choosing Your Winning Gown

 There is no right or wrong way to choose a gown and no perfect formula. However, there are a few things to keep in mind that could make your dress shopping experience a complete success!


First and foremost, set a budget and stick to it. You will thank me later. There have been a few situations where I tried on a gown that was way above my budget, fell in love with it, and then walked away broken-hearted because it was THE gown, just way over budget. Only try on gowns that are within your budget. 


Before heading to the gown shop, do your research! What’s trending? What styles are new this year or up and coming? What styles are you drawn to? What colors, fabric, beading do you like? If you find something you like, write down the designer and style number, or bring a photo (screenshots work great too) to your appointment. It is also important to know your body type and what styles flatter your best features. Research styles of dresses that best compliment your figure. 

Here are some of the most common body types to help get you started:

Color & Style

Statistically speaking, white has performed very well over the past decade. However, you shouldn’t limit your color and style preference if it doesn't make you feel like a million bucks. If wearing red or blue makes you feel fierce, by all means choose that color. What is your power color? What helps you exude confidence? These are all factors to keep in mind when choosing your winning gown. Try to stick to designs that don’t distract. You want the judges to focus on your poise, elegance, and confidence in that gown. You don’t want your dress to overpower their attention.


I don't think I have ever met a pageant girl who doesn’t have a seamstress on speed dial when it’s close to pageant weekend. Meaning, you will rarely buy a dress off the rack and it fits perfectly. When shopping, bring appropriate undergarments and shoes, this will help with fit and length. Bring those items with you when you get your dress tailored as well. It should perfectly fit your body and brush the floor with shoes on. Shop early enough to allow yourself the time to have your dress tailored and do not wait until the last minute.

If you’re taller than 6’, like me, these tips probably won’t help as much as my dress shopping strategy is simply to find anything that is long enough...with shoes on. But having an idea of what you want before shopping is key. 

Thanks for reading. I’d love to hear from you: Stay happy, healthy, and grounded Mind. Heart. Body.

Megan Vladic

Miss International 2020


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