Muslim Miss England contestant Aysha Khan wears wetsuit instead of a bikini, says showing less skin makes her feel 'comfortable'
Aysha Khan, the Miss England finalist who decided to sport a wetsuit and not a bikini, has been making headlines everywhere. The Muslim finalist is believed to be the first contender who broke new ground when she ditched the contest's traditional bikini or swimsuit for a surfer gear.
Recently 21-year-old Khan opened up about her action to The Sun and said: "I don’t really show much skin, because that’s what makes me feel comfortable." Some women can feel more comfortable with showing more skin while others choose to show less. "Empowerment is a personal feeling, and not wearing a bikini doesn’t mean I’m not confident about my body. And I didn’t wear a wetsuit because my religion prohibits me," she added.
The current Miss Lancashire submitted the pictures of herself in the wetsuit for the optional Miss Beach Beauty round which replaced the compulsory swimwear parade in 2010. She explained that she was aware that the round was optional but "did not want to miss out". She shared that she sported a wetsuit as it was her personal choice.
"My entry was accepted, as Miss England is very much about showing your personality. The round is about body confidence and I felt great. I was just myself," she revealed.
She was the only one out of 49 participants not to wear a bikini or a costume and managed to make it to the top 20 finalists.
"I’m proud that I’ve stayed true to myself throughout the competition and would never do anything that goes against my own morals to fit in," Aysha said.
She also spoke about how standing her ground helped her to stand out and has helped her progress in the competition. "Me being myself is what makes me different," Aysha said. Her decision to sport a wetsuit has won her a lot of praise from especially young Muslim girls.
"I’ve had a lot of messages from girls saying they are really proud of me and I’m representing them in a good way. With Miss England, I do look different to other girls. My hair and skin are darker. But it’s about embracing what you look like," the model shared. Aysha became the first Asian contender to win the Miss Lancashire title, which resulted in her automatic entry into the Miss England pageant.