Fox News - Fair & Balanced

Wednesday, April 7, 2010 as of 11:14 AM ET

Search Site

  • Bald beauty queen seeks to raise awareness for disease at Miss America pageant


    A Miss America contestant who suffers from a disease that led to complete baldness is out to prove that beauty comes in many packages.

    Kayla Martell, who recently won the title of Miss Delaware 2010, suffers from Alopecia Areata, an autoimmune disease that led to complete hair loss when she was a child. Martell, now 21, was diagnosed with the disease in the fifth grade.

    But in spite of her disease, Martell went on to compete in the Miss Delaware pageant four times before taking the title home in 2010. While she has previously competed both with a wig and without, this year she decided to wear a blond wig.

    SLIDESHOW: Bald Beauties

    “It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made,” she told Gretchen Carlson in an appearance on “Fox and Friends” Tuesday. “As you know, Miss America needs to be someone who’s relatable and approachable and I think that helped me to fit the needs of the job.”

    Martell plans to use her platform to raise awareness for Alopecia Areata, which afflicts more than four million Americans and two percent of the world’s population.

    “I hope to show people that beauty comes in all different kinds of packages,” she said. “No beauty queen should fit into a box and look like a Barbie every time they wake up and none of us do, as you know. So I hope to show people that you are beautiful and whatever makes you different, you should embrace it.”

    But Martell adds that she does not want to be judged only for her disease.

    “I think every contestant just wants to be judged on their character and judged by the ability to perform the duties of the job of Miss America,” she said. “And I hope that the judges can focus on what I have to offer for the program and what I can bring to the table for Miss America.”

blog comments powered by Disqus

about this blog

  • The FOX411 Blog is your first call for celebrity and entertainment news. FOX411 brings you the latest scoops using FOX’s unmatched reach in news, entertainment, TV and the Internet. Click on back now, ya hear?




Attach a photo:

most popular posts