Like every other Miss World pageant contestant that walked the global stage on December 19 in Sanya, China, Jamaica’s Sanneta Myrie has a varied skillset and many interests. According to her profile on the Miss World website, the 24 year old medical doctor aspires to volunteer with Doctors without Borders, enjoys long distance & cross country running and loves to dance.
She stands out for many things including her beauty and intelligence, but also as the first Miss World contestant to ever compete with her hair in dreadlocks.
“My life has always been rooted in the arts and culture which has significantly impacted my own personal style. So even when I select glam, it has to have an ethnic urban twist to it”, she said in an interview with the Jamaican Observer.
Dreadlocks can be traced historically to the Rastafarians of Jamaica, and many other sub-cultures around the world who embraced the style as a symbol of their identity and expression. And, while they have become increasingly popular and widespread in today’s world, this will be the first time they have been worn on a Miss World platform. However, given that it is a platform that is meant to illustrate beauty around the world, it is completely refreshing to see a representation of beauty that is different from the norm.
The only other beauty pageant contestant to ever rock the international stage with dreadlocks was Miss Universe Jamaica, Zahra Redwood, who proudly represented the country’s minority Rastafarian faith and helped to dispel stereotypes about Rastas.
Myrie, who received the Miss Jamaica crown in August and placed in the top five out of a total of 114 contestants to compete in the Miss World pageant believes that the idea of what is beautiful truly comes from within oneself.
“You have to first find yourself and love her fiercely before people can truly be struck by you and fall in love with you. You hear all the time confidence is key, and it’s true, you have to be confident in who you are, if you ever hope to be truly beautiful”, she says.