credit: CREDIT:  MARIO TAMA/GETTY IMAGES

No Bikinis Allowed in this Unlikely Beauty Pageant

prisoners

You wouldn’t know it at first glance, but all of these ladies dressed in evening gowns and full makeup are not just beauty contestants, they’re also prisoners.

This is how Talavera Bruce prison in Brazil, where the women are serving their sentences, helps boost the inmates’ confidence. In the beauty contest, the women compete in the evening gown and beachwear categories and they get judged on elegance and “outlook in the future.”

READ: This Prison is So Dangerous, Even the Guards Won’t Go In

The 10-year tradition allows the women to increase their self-esteem. First place also wins a sash, a hair dryer, and a flat iron — all in the name of beauty and confidence.

This year’s first place winner, Neri Rangel, told the Brazilian television network Globo, “When I entered [the competition], I said…I am no better than anyone else. But I’m going to enter to win. They always say that the TB Girl has to be beautiful, friendly, and charismatic. And I’m all of those things.”

The ladies in the swimwear competition

pageant swimwear
CREDIT:  MARIO TAMA/GETTY IMAGES

Inmate Micheli Neri Rangel celebrates her win.

prison pageant
MARIO TAMA/GETTY IMAGES

A beauty contestant hugs her little brother that was allowed to watch the competition.

prison pageant
CREDIT:  MARIO TAMA/GETTY IMAGES

Read more about why Talavera Bruce Penitentiary holds the annual pageant here.

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