Gaia International is a global online pageant aiming to redefine beauty to empower and build self esteem, service and compassion. Gaia promotes healthy body image and the ideal that everyone is beautiful.

Shelley Grace created this is platform as a response to recent experiences within the pageant industry – the fallacy, the false flattery and the school yard bully mentality – the ensuring contestants have a strong platform and message only to then finalise the awards through a voting system based on one photo. “Being a slightly older, slightly larger competitor the last two pageants I was involved in were quite discouraging in the end,” said Grace. “I pushed myself and completed the task rounds and ramp walks etc. only to have the final titles decided on by public vote based solely on a photo. Of course, being now in the Ms/Mrs category meant at 40 I was competing against 26 year olds … needless to say we know where the votes went. From that disappointment and discouragement sprang Gaia- a true platform designed to allow all women (and in the future men, unique, youth and pets) who wish to change the perspective and rewrite the narrative will have a place to do just that.”

Grace has always adored the Oscars and Milan Fashion week where individuality and quirk were admired and rewarded. “It was something I saw missing in the standard beauty pageant arena. While Miss Universe, Miss Earth and the like all strive to better the world, the environment and prove beauty and intelligence ran hand in hand, the emphasis is still on beauty,” Grace said.

Gaia offers four categories for women from age 18 to 51 and above allowing more women to feel beutiful in their own skin and proud of who they are. They currently have contestents from all over the world. Shelley says that her dream is to see all of the countries represented on their platform. Each entrant has a platform they stand for; autism, animal cruelty, obestity, they all wish to bring their issue to the forefront of their pagent journey to change how people see and deal with them. “Following later in 2019 Gaia International will be offering Suave for men, Gaia Youth and Gaia Pet Pageant,” says Grace, which really opens up the pagent circuit to those who before never felt like they would belong.

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