South Africa has crowned new Miss South Africa, Shudufhadzo Musida, and she is challenging beauty standards as well as mental health stigma.
South Africa has unveiled new Miss South Africa, Shudufhadzo Musida, who was crowned in Cape Town. South Africa is not one to stope cultural festivities, and held the annual Miss South Africa this past Saturday at Table Bay Hotel in the midst of a global pandemic. Musida's win comes as no surprise as she was voted "fan favourite" from the top 10 contestants announced last year in August. The 24-year-old has already taken to the road with radio interviews and is Miss South Africa's first crowned bald beauty.
Limpopo-born Musida expressed in an interview with Afternoon Express how she had to endure being bullied for being Venda in a country that favours Nguni culture and languages. Venda people are often marginalised because they represent a minority with a culture and language that is vastly different from popular Nguni cultures such as Zulu and Xhosa. Musida said that she will campaign for mental health and women empowerment. The newly crowned queen stated that less than 10 percent of South Africans have access to mental health services. Musida said her reign aims to fight the stigma that is attached with finding help for mental illnesses.
"If the mind is conquered, we'll go nowhere," Musida expressed in a media press briefing.
Tall and voluptuous, Musida started modelling from the age of 17 and has previously worked with international companies Eucerin and Woolworths. She has also featured in Vogue Italia's catalogue shoots. While Miss South Africa has an extensive modelling portfolio, it is current Miss Universe Zozibini Tunzi who inspired Musida to enter Miss South Africa. Tunzi's beautiful dark skin and edgy haircut broke history by being the first Black Miss South Africa to win without hair extensions. Musida took it a step further by going completely bald.
The bald look is one favoured by both sexes in South Africa and is affectionately known as chiskop. Black South Africans are known for being militant about challenging Eurocentric beauty standards. It is South African's Black beauty advocacy that saw an insensitive hair advert targeted at Black people pulled out due to public backlash. The infamous TRESemme hair advert described Black African hair as "damaged" and "dry" whilst Caucasian hair was described as "fine" and "normal". Tunzi took to her public platform to slam the company and local beauty store Clicks for running the ad which had evident racist undertones.
Musida is currently studying towards an honours degree in International Relations from the University of Witwatersrand. Congratulations have been pouring in from prominent South Africans and followers of Musida's journey. She takes over the reins from Miss South Africa 2019 Sasha-Lee Olivier. The first and second runners-up are Tato Moselle and Natasha Joubert.
I'm a big fan of pageants. Proud to have judged at least five #MissSA pageants.THX to @DoreenMorris. Congrats… https://t.co/IDIVDRhiNI— Felicia Mabuza-Suttle (@Felicia Mabuza-Suttle)1603638601.0
I can't get over how beautiful our Miss SA is. Her face hits me for a 6 EVERYTIME. #MissSA2020 https://t.co/nDBjAs2pqY— Anele Mdoda (@Anele Mdoda)1603646027.0
Happy Sunday to all my Queens sporting the beautiful chiskop...nani nonke abanye! Congratulations to our new Miss S… https://t.co/C9YXZe9OJp— Lynette Ntuli (@Lynette Ntuli)1603632540.0
Congratulations to Shudufhadzo Musida, our new Miss South Africa! #WBeauty #MissSA2020 https://t.co/ZyACjpT1AF— Woolworths SA (@Woolworths SA)1603611141.0
Congratulations to the absolutely gorgeous Miss South Africa Shudufhadzo Musida ❤️🥰 Imani Limpopo imani 🙏🏿🙏🏿🙏🏿 Re… https://t.co/xYrMu2mvYn— #POWER - OUT NOW (@#POWER - OUT NOW)1603701724.0
Gawdam current miss South Africa is so sexy and beautiful!! A brown skin girl 😍🥺🥰❤️🔥 #MissSA2020 https://t.co/3Cf3f1uC35— MALE BESTIE 👨🏽 (@MALE BESTIE 👨🏽)1603608685.0
I love that #MissSA is slowly opening up to different types of beauty. I love seeing stereotypes being broken🥺 Cong… https://t.co/SH7DRUBTEG— #SaveOurChildren (@#SaveOurChildren) 1603619387.0