The winner of Miss UK 2017 has given up her crown after she was told to lose weight to compete at an international level.
Zoiey Smale, 28, from Nottinghamshire, was crowned Miss UK in June and was preparing to compete at Miss United Continents in Ecuador in September.
But she dropped out after the UK head of Miss United Continents told her the international directors of the contest wanted her to “lose as much weight as she could” to become a serious contender, the size 10 model claimed in an interview with The Independent.
Smale responded by giving up her title and taking a hiatus from beauty contests, and has pledged to use her experience to combat body shaming.
"I can't represent a company that thinks it's OK to body shame women because they don't have the right measurements," she went on. "I was asked to submit every measurement on my body, which I didn't do. My measurements should be irrelevant.
“For a person to tell me to change myself to fit in with a company make me feel sick,” she added. “How are people allowed to dictate what I put in my body? Beauty is not determined by the size you are on a clothes tag. So I gave up my title.”
While pageants are often criticised for objectifying women, Smale stresses that “some pageants promote charity work and body positivity.”
“On the flip side there are other competitions that I have heard of where girls are used as escorts for rich men who sponsor competitions. They go out to 'sponsor' dinners in cocktail dresses and are told to mingle," claims Smale.