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Miss America beauty pageant to drop swimsuit and evening gown competitions

"You as contestants told us you don't want to stand in swimming suits and high heels. Guess what, you don't have to."

Miss America beauty pageant to drop swimsuit and evening gown competitions
Photo courtesy: Instagram/missamerica

In a bid to not judge contestants based completely on their looks and body shapes, the Miss America beauty pageant on Tuesday announced the historic decision of dropping the swimsuit and evening gown competitions.

The Miss America Organisation took to Twitter to announce that pageants henceforth will not have contestants being paraded in swimsuits and evening gowns which have been synonymous with such competitions around the world for decades. Instead, Miss America Organisation wants its competition to be a comprehensive assessment of contestants - judging them as much for their thoughts and views as on their 'outward appeal.'

A Miss America Organisation official recently also told ABC news channel that a lot of contestants in the past had highlighted the need to focus on the inner strength of women rather than relying solely on outward standards of beauty. "Organisers had been told by young women that while they would love to be part of the progaram, they did not want to be out there in high heels and swimsuits. So guess what, you don't have to do that anymore," said Gretchen Carlson, chairwoman of Miss America’s board of trustees. "We want to celebrate your accomplishments and your talents and then we want to hand you scholarships. We will no longer judge our candidates on their outward physical appearance."

The new rules will come into place from the 2019 edition of a competition which originated in the early 1920s.