Bikini-clad beauty pick of bunch
While most people have packed their swimsuits away until next summer, Waiau Pa’s Melissa Misson is still proudly wearing hers.
On Saturday night she wore it so well that she won the NZ Ralph Swimsuit Model of the Year final in Panmure.
Competing against 15 other women from around the country, Melissa wowed the judges to take top honours and progress to the Australian version of the event in the Gold Coast in May where she will go up against 23 Aussies.
The event features two rounds – After Five and Swimsuit and as well as parading in these, Melissa is aware that the ladies must introduce themselves well and show a bit of personality.
‘‘You get judged on a number of things – how well your outfit complements your figure, the music you choose, your hair, nails, confidence, if you speak well and how well you capture the audience.’’
The competition will be fierce with the top 12 contestants set to feature on the 2010 Ralph calendar, with the winner earning the treasured cover shot as well as taking home $20,000 in cash and prizes.
While Melissa works during the week in a key accounts/ sales assistant role for freight company Kuehne + Nagel Limited at Auckland Airport, a big chunk of her spare time is taken up with dance classes and gym sessions to help her stay at the top of her game.
With the extra added incentives this time round, Melissa said she has already stepped up her preparations.
‘‘I’m just exercising a lot and trying to eat properly.
‘‘I will also be trying to get a lot of sleep,’’ she said.
While her trip is all expenses paid, Melissa and her boyfriend plan to stay an extra couple of nights to unwind.
After first competing in beauty pageants at 15 while still at Rosehill College, Melissa has gone from ‘‘strength to strength’’.
First placings at Ms Pauanui 2006, Miss Matarangi 2006, Miss Kingslander 2008 and Miss Safari Lounge 2008 have already stood her in good stead, while she has been a keen participant in Miss Franklin and Miss Franklin Universe.
Melissa will be looking for a sponsor for this year’s Miss Auckland pageant, while the Miss Indy, Miss Best Model Australia, Miss Lingerie Model of the Year, Miss D1NZ and Miss Hawaiian Tropic titles will also be firmly in her sights.