This Friday, Women's Day, the Miss South Africa 2019 finals will take place at the Times Square Sun Arena in Pretoria.
South Africans are more excited than ever to see who will walk away with this prestigious title and wear the coveted crown this year.
When this year's Miss SA finalists were announced, the country applauded the organisers for finally selecting women who were more representative of SA. A more inclusive group includes women of all races, height, dress size and sexual orientation.
We finally saw women who were more natural. We saw more natural hair and less weaves or wigs. We saw barely-there makeup rather than overly done beauty pageant makeup.
All of this created a buzz around the competition and people started picking their favourites.
For the first time in a long time I personally got excited about the pageant. It was a Miss SA I was keen to watch because the organisers have finally gotten it right.
But then they sent out the promo pictures of the girls and my heart sunk.
Those same girls were almost unrecognizable.
Instead of the natural beauties I was happy to see, I was now looking at faces that were overly airbrushed and looking like they were all photographically manipulated with the same filters and Photoshop techniques - not a blemish in sight. The girls who showed off their natural hair, now wore weaves and wigs.
These dramatic changes puts a damper on what the organisers are trying achieve with this year's competition.
Why create an illusion of perfection when they should be celebrating their individuality?