Texas pageant queen Lauren Carrion shares inspiring story of 40-pound weight loss

Lauren Carrion is no longer the camera-shy girl. She struts onstage in body-hugging evening gowns and swimsuits. She embraces the spotlight as a pageant queen.

Lauren began competing in pageants a little over 2 years ago - "Before I began competing, I was in a place where I was lacking confidence and I was 40 pounds heavier. Pageants helped my find my confidence again, and after competing in my first pageant, it became a hobby I became extremely passionate about" - she explained.

The beauty queen would now like to spread a healthy and sensible message to Americans about body positivity. Carrion puts an emphasis on allowing women to be themselves. Her message is that women should not allow the media to dictate to them who they should be, or tell them that their bodies are not right. 

Let's know a little more about her inspiring story through this interview!

You competed at the Miss Texas Belleza Latina pageant, what is the most memorable moment from the contest?

I think the most memorable moments were arriving at the pageant, meeting my pageant, sisters, and placing 2nd runner up, while my family and friends were in the crowd watching me. I worked incredibly hard for six months to perform well. I felt like I left it all on stage, and all the hard work I put into the competition was worth it. 

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Did you plan to compete in another pageant in the future?

I am not quite sure where my pageant journey is going to lead me. I told myself that if I did not win Miss Texas Belleza Latina I would retire. After taking a month off and really thinking about it, I think I have the passion to continue competing in pageants.  

What do you expect to gain by competing in pageantry?

I do not think I ever expected to gain anything from pageantry in the beginning. I have gained so many positive experiences and friends. I now know that I want to be an inspiration and role model to all those around me. 

Many misses have said that their dream since a child was to participate in a pageant as prestigious as Miss World (or Miss Universe). It this your case ? And if so, why ?

I would say yes if I had begun competing in pageants at an earlier age. Since I began competing at the age of 25, I think my goal is to just make it as far as I can in the Miss division for any system. I do admire those women who make it as far as Miss Universe or Miss World.   

Did you face any moment of disappointment with yourself during the pageant journey, and how did you overcome it?

No, I feel like I have only positive experiences in pageantry, and everything happens for a reason.

We’ve all seen the stereotypical portrayals of pageant contestants, a la Miss Congeniality, spreading peace, love and beauty throughout the world. How do you think you'll make a difference?

I believe that my passion for volunteering and giving back to others will lead me to touch the lives of so many people. I know I can give others hope for a better future.

What would you advise any young girl out there who has a dream of being a queen one day?

I would tell them to Never Give Up, because anything is possible with hard work and dedication. Along the way, there might be some hard times or set backs, but Never Give Up. You have to keep pushing forward to achieve your dreams and goals. 

Who is your ideal beauty queen and why?

My ideal beauty queen currently is Miss Universe 2017-Demi-Leigh Nel Peters. I believe she is a huge advocate for women. She used her awful carjacking incident, and turned in into such positive influence by starting Unbreakable. When I look at her, I feel like she has such a personable personality, and her confidence radiates onto other people.