Miss SA 2019 goes beyond conventional beauty standards, Mzansi approves
Since the announcement of the top 16 for the Miss SA pageant on Thursday, South Africans have taken to Twitter to approve of the competition's decision to ditch the conventional beauty standards to give a true reflection of society.
Sibabalwe GcilItshana, parliamentary officer and researcher for Equal Education, is one of the contestants who captured the public eye, for being the first ever openly "queer" entrant.
In her top 16 interview with host Bonang Matheba, Siba said the competition would give her the opportunity to share what she believes is an important aspect of her identity as a South African woman.
She also hopes to empower women who see themselves represented in her.
Siba said she was open to telling her story.
"I do not intend to stand for anyone else, I just have my experience and my truth to share."
Models Sasha Lee-Olivier and Beulah Baduza also had many questioning why they were considered plus-size.
The models responded to this on eNCA on Friday morning.
"I am a professional model outside of the Miss SA competition and if you are not a size zero, then you fall into a spectrum of plus-size, and when you are told this in your castings long enough, you start to see yourself as that," said Beulah.
Among others who caught the public's attention was 24-year old Kgothatso Dithebe, who has a unique facial birth mark.
Kgothatso said because of this, she suffered from low-self esteem while growing up.
Twitter is here for diversity, from sexuality and Afros to plus-size models.
These are the responses:
In the midst of all the homophobia on SA twitter itsp refreshing to learn. We have the first queer contestant on #misssa2019 pageant... sibabalwe gclitshana the is comfort news we lgbt+ south africans need in the midst of #zodwacancelled #phatjoecancelled sagas pic.twitter.com/AOnYGd08Xx— Waseem Imam Saheb (@WaseemIS) July 11, 2019