Angelica Galindez from Salt Lake City suffers from alopecia, a condition that causes hair loss all over the body. She began losing her hair at age 12, and would be teased by her classmates for her appearance. Angelica felt ashamed of the way she looked, though she grew to love experimenting with makeup and is now a hair and makeup stylist.
"Ironically, hair is my life," she says of her profession. "It's a little hard because I can't experiment with my products, but doing hair relaxes me, almost like therapy. And I enjoy working with people who have lost their hair from illness."
Her friend entered her in the Miss Philippines Earth USA pageant, using a photo of Angelica, who is half Filipino, wearing a wavy brown wig. She was accepted. Though she was hesitant to follow through, she decided that this would be a good opportunity to raise awareness about her condition, and to make a statement about female beauty, too.
Not only did Angelica compete, she did so without her wig, and ended up winning the title of Miss Philippines Water USA 2014. Next up, she competes in the Miss Philippines Earth USA Nationals in Manila in April.
This teen's self-confidence is extremely inspiring to other people who don't look the exact way society says they should. Says Angelica, "I decided that this could be an opportunity to show the world that girls like me could be classically beautiful, too."
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