Ms Diamond UK 2021 - Charlotte Lister - Queen Interview

You may know Charlotte as the lady behind interviews at Crowns and Sashes charity pag mag; so it feels strange to turn the tables and ask the questions! Charlotte is a charity fundraising powerhouse, cancer awareness advocate and looks forward to the prep for her next competition!


Your Full Name?

Charlotte Lister.


What is your current title?

Ms Diamond UK.



How many times did you compete for your title?

Once.


What does your system stand for and why is this important to you?

The Diamond System allows all women to feel empowered by pageantry no matter their height, size, age etc, which I feel is incredibly important as I am a Mum and some systems won't accept me; but being a mum doesn't stop me from my pageant responsibilities, in-fact I get my daughter involved in a number of my events to highlight the importance of volunteering and charity work at a young age.


Can you tell me a bit about your chosen platform?

My platform is cancer awareness and end of life care and this is due to a number of family members battling cancer some have survived and some unfortunately haven't and that's why I decided to raise awareness of end of life care.


My platform for cancer is all cancers. I don't have a specific one due to my family battling many types of cancer so I feel it's important to raise awareness of all cancers whether they are common or not.


In relation to end of life care, many people don't like talking about death but it will happen to us all and in some cases they will know roughly when if they have a terminal illness and I want people to be more aware of end of life care plans as they can help make that time for both the person dying and also there friends and family a more comfortable one as everyone knows what that person's wishes are and how they will be achieved.



What do Beauty Pageants mean to you and how would you define them?

Over the years I believe that that the term Beauty Pageant has changed so much it's not about outer beauty any more and standing in a bikini on stage (which I still love and won ms Swimwear at Ms Diamond UK) but so many pageants now focus on charity work, community work as well as raising awareness for their chosen platform. So for me, the definition of a beauty pageant is being able to make a difference to others in their community or a cause, being kind and supportive to others.


When did you enter your first beauty pageant and why?

Wow! This question is taking me back… I entered my first pageant back in 2012 after being scouted for a pageant but as I was (and still am) a Mum I couldn't compete but I was interested in learning more about them so I found a system that allowed mothers to compete and that was it I was hooked, I loved getting involved in community events and raising money for charity. I also met one of my best friends at that pageant and I have since made many more. I love competing even though my nerves on pageant weekend are shocking, for me I love the pageant prep and interview the most. But I can't wait to compete in Regency International next year!



What is something important you would tell a newcomer to Beauty Pageants?

Research is the key! Research the systems, the rounds, the ethos of the pageant and their chosen charity if they have one; make sure it aligns with your values and ethos and then ENTER! Pageants help you gain so many transferable skills and are a brilliant way to meet like minded girls and women who are passionate and kind.


What is the most important thing you have done or will be doing with your current title?

I think the most important thing I have done is starting my own online international pageant magazine which has raised over £1700 for the Samaritans. I actually wanted to do this as a Queens project, but due to the pandemic I had to bring it forward but I am continuing with this throughout my reign as Ms Diamond UK and I am adding some other little bits to it over the next year with the help of my amazing team to help to highlight the amazing work that the pageant community do as well as continuing to raise money for charity.


Do you think it is important for a queen to use her title to support her system and take part in community and charity work?

YES 100% YES, once you have won your pageant the work doesn't stop! Having a National title can also open more doors in regards to charity and community work so take every opportunity that is offered to you (as long as it aligns with your ethos) and go out and make a difference as in my opinion that's what pageant Queens do!


What qualities do you think a competitor needs to win a crown?

There are so many qualities you need to help you win the crown: hardworking, determined, kind, friendly and willing to support others. When you show these qualities during your regional reign it will come across in your interview, and that interview can be a huge chunk of the overall score (some judges have told me they often pick the winner in the interview round) - if you show how passionate you are and show how hard you have worked they will notice this and it can help you win the crown, it certainly helped me.


Do you think a queen is a role model and has responsibilities connected with that?

Pageants are becoming bigger in the UK and many pageant newbies as I call them do look up to national title holders as role models, so I believe it's important to be friendly, offer advice, be supportive to the pageant community and continue to raise awareness of your pageant platform. These are the responsibilities of a title holder as well as promoting their system and it's important that they are done.


How would you explain Beauty Pageants to someone who has never experienced one?

Wow this is a tough question, but I would say a beauty pageant is a way to get involved in your local community, fundraise for charity and highlight a cause close to you and make friends. On pageant weekend it's a day or weekend full of laughter, happy tears and making lifelong friendships as well as learning more about who you are and what you want to accomplish, oh and don't forget a chance to learn transferable skills such as interview skills and public speaking.



What's been your greatest learning experience from pageantry?

Never give up on your dreams! I first competed in an international pageant in 2014 and tried a few times since to do it again as I would love to bring an international crown home but it didn't happen till this year and I'm glad it happened this way as my regional reign was such an amazing one even with the obstacles that covid gave me, I created a life long dream of creating my own magazine and raised over £2600 for various charities as well as bring a team of like minded pageant women together to make my dream become a reality.


What was running through your head when your name was announced as the winner?

Oh I turned around and cried, it was so overwhelming. Due to covid I was a regional finalist for over 2 years and throughout that time I made over 600 appearances and raised thousands for charity and it wasn't easy; it was a lot of hard work and determination so knowing that it paid off was a dream come true, even more so as my nerves on pageant weekend were terrible and all my walk practice went out of the window. But I did it, I have the crown and now I'm starting my new projects in conjunction with Crowns and Sashes Magazine, to raise more money for charity, raise more awareness and to continue to bring the International pageant community together.


Who is your Beauty Pageant inspiration?

Ohh I have so many after interviewing so many incredible women! Its hard to narrow down but the main ones are Stephanie Hill as she competed 4 times in Miss England before winning the crown which shows some serious determination. Harriotte Lane as she has accomplished so much at such a young age. Stayc Simpson Ms Achievement World who has competed in pageants while going through cancer treatment, she is a true inspiration to us all and I can't wait to meet her next year.


If you have sister queens, tell us how you are as a team and how you support each other etc.

I have 13 sister Queens as the Miss Diamond UK Pageant crowns age divisions from mini to classic as well as curve, plus they also crowned 3 ambassadors and 3 charity winners too who also have the option to compete in Regency International. I haven't been crowned very long and took a well deserved holiday but if it's anything how we supported each other during our regional reigns then I will never be off my phone, we have supported each other with campaigns, with my magazine and also through the pandemic we really have bonded already and now we get to all go to Vegas together next year which I can't wait for!


Keep up to date on all things pageant news at Crowns and Sashes Instagram page and her Ms Diamond UK 2021-2022 page.