The pageant world has long been criticized for its cookie-cutter stereotypes.
But thanks to reality television, an entirely new realm of the beauty queen world has been opened.
And as a curvy mother of five Latina, it was not until later in life that Jonella Roath realized she was in fact beauty queen material.
“Being a stay-at-home mom for 10 years, being in pageants helped me regroup with myself and have better self-esteem,” Roath told Fox News Latino.
Roath is one of the contestants on “Crown Chasers,” a new TLC show that follows the surprisingly cutthroat world of Mrs. Pageants in Denver, Colorado.
Created by the same network that gave viewers “Toddlers & Tiaras,” Roath saw the show as an opportunity to show that “being different is good.”
A buxom beauty with Panamanian heritage, Roath struggled with not being your typical stick figure contestant.
“When you think of pageant world you think of thin girls,” Roath said.
However, she wanted to set an example that being unique is beautiful.
“I never realized what an asset this was until I became an adult,” Roath revealed of her mixed Latino heritage and distinct look.
“I didn’t really know what being Latino was until I got older.”
While her husband was hesitant at first when TLC came knocking at their door, Roath said it became clear to her that “at some point you have to realize you have to do something for yourself.”
So what drew Roath to the world of Mrs. Pageant in the first place?
“My mother is a very strong Panamanian and I felt like I hadn’t done anything in my life to make my mother feel like I had done something great.”
Adding, “Part of me was doing this to prove a point that I could do this and maybe get approval from her.”
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