True Beauty, from Amy Rasmussen
from Amy Rasmussen
Amy Rasmussen is a motivational speaker, wife, mother and long standing Executive Director for the Miss Utah’s Outstanding Teen Scholarship Program. At age 23, she became the youngest state director within the Miss America Organization (at the time) and has spent over a decade serving in this capacity. She is a trained makeup artist, stylist and sparkle enthusiast. Amy has been lucky to work alongside several local directors over the years and considers many of them, longtime friends.
We are so lucky at Ypsilon to be surrounded by such amazing women, including Amy Rasmussen. We put together an interview with her, as she was kind enough to share her knowledge and expertise with you all! Below you will read a little bit about her, and a lot about how you can be the best version of yourself when it comes to beauty, attitude, social media, and relationships with those around you. Take a read below to see what she has to say!
Tell us about what it is like to be a pageant director! How did you get started and what motivates you to continue?
I get this question, so often and I love contemplating my answers over the years, because my answer has changed. I have changed since I was 23 and I’m grateful to have had so many wonderful titleholders, friends and parents of contestants impact my growth. The number 251 is important to me – this is the most recently updated number of contestants I have had the pleasure of working with over the last 11 years. I have 251 amazing reasons to keep doing what I do and each year as this number grows, so does my comprehension and understanding of the incredible impact these young women are making in the world. They are my “why” and my greatest motivation to push through the stress, the late nights, early mornings and time away from my family. They are earning scholarship dollars, serving their communities and growing into incredible women!
As the director of the teen program I honestly have a front row seat to the astonishing lives of today’s youth. We are in such capable hands with these bright, talented and kind young women leading us! The teen contestants are so fresh, so full of life and their determination to change the world is SO inspiring. I’ve watched the social climate change, social media change, fashion change...but one thing has stayed constant. The love these young girls have for their communities and the people around them, stays intact and that is enough to keep the spark(le) alive for anyone!
What are some tips you give your girls as they prepare for Miss America's Outstanding Teen that other girls could also benefit from?
I like to start my new contestant orientation with a message about attitude. I tell my girls (and their parents and directors), that attitude makes 100% of the difference in PageantLand. It literally does! If you spell the word ATTITUDE and add up the number value of each letter ( A= 1, T = 20, E = 5, etc) is adds up to 100. (pretty cool, huh?) Your attitude plays a crucial part in your experience. In fact, I think it’s far more important than any piece of wardrobe, talent selection, platform topic, headshot pose or resume. Before you even put your name on the application to enter the pageant, your attitude should be determined first.
Let your attitude be inspiring to others, be memorable for all the right reasons and win or lose, walk away feeling like a winner because you are choosing to. With all the variables that go into your pageant experience, you have 100% control over this one! Choose wisely!
Fun things to prepare (after you have an awesome attitude): Listen to opinions, consider them and appreciate them – but at the end of the day YOU are the one on stage. Stay true to who you are. Period.
For girls interested in competing for Miss Utah's Outstanding Teen, what is the best way to prepare?
Start with heart. Decide your “why” and go from there! Stay organized, be on time and do the hard work. When the pageant arrives, it is usually very evident to see the contestants who have put in the necessary effort to succeed. Then, find 2 or 3 people that you trust, who can help you prepare. It can be your mom, your aunt, neighbor, former contestant, etc. These people should have an idea of what pageant life is all about. They should be your cheerleaders and people who you know - will make awesome choices with you, not for you. Don’t expect to do this by yourself.
What is beauty to you? When do you feel the most beautiful?
Beauty is a word that takes on many different meanings. For me, as it pertains to a woman’s beauty, there must be a strong sense of self, determination and confidence, within. A woman who knows her strengths, her weaknesses and who isn’t afraid of the critics – she is beautiful. Sequentially, a woman who looks out for the needs of others and has the heart of a servant is beautiful beyond measure. I feel the most empowered, the most beautiful when I wake up, put on makeup, run a brush through my hair and find ways to make my life and the lives I have direct influence on, better.
Describe your daily beauty routine!
My daily beauty routine is just that – a routine! I am a habitual makeup girl. I don’t leave the house without my routine. I wash my face day and night, with a simple soap and hydrate with a pure form of argan oil (I love that stuff!) I love Makeup Forever stick foundation because it’s a cinch to put on and it blends with ease. I fill in my brows with powder, dab on some eyelid primer and start with shadows. I like to play around with techniques and shading, depending on what I’m wearing or what my activities are for the day. No matter what colors I use – blending is vital! I am a winged eyeliner lover, and Kat VonD Tattoo in the color Trooper is my ultimate ‘go to.’ I use Urban Decay Crème Contour and fun warm shades of blush to finish my face. Lashes are a no brainer and I alternate between L’Oreal Voluminous (cheap and the BEST) and fake lashes. To complete the look, I love so many different lip products...I am not a brand snob, so it could be a drugstore gloss or Tom Ford...just depends on the day!
What are the biggest pieces of advice that you could give to young women?
I consider myself a retired teen-ager and because I work so closely with teens in both my professional and volunteer setting, I have a unique perspective to what teens are facing. The interesting thing about self perception – is that is usually is JUST YOURSELF who feels and thinks those things. It’s your - self. I have a song lyric from Bon Jovi that I absolutely love and I share it often, “If you could see yourself as others do, you’d wish you were as beautiful as you!” What a brilliant line! There are days when I wake up and I’m quick to judge myself or I put on a pair of pants that I swear fit last week and it’s easy to let my feelings of frustration take over. I then have to stop myself, remember Bon Jovi and change my way of thinking. He is 100% correct. You are trendy to someone, you are the perfect body type to someone, you are enough for so many...so make that someone – yourself.
The internet can be just that – a net! One in which you are not meant to be caught up in. It takes knowing where the nets are, and staying as far away from them as possible. If you are feeling inadequate because an influencer is making you feel like crap...STOP following them! You don’t owe anyone on social media real estate in your mind. The numbers online are all a myth. A majority of Social Media influencers buy their followers anyway...so it’s all a ridiculous game. Separate your self-worth, from the numbers you see on a screen – they are not a reflection of each other.
The next time you feel doubt, worry or you’ve compared your life to someone else, remember Bon Jovi. Someone is always looking to you to be the beautiful, strong and confident girl that you’ve been put on this Earth to be.
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What an interview! If you enjoyed what you read, feel free to leave a comment below or share on your own social media accounts, so that other women can benefit from these messages! If you have an inspiring woman in mind who represents true beauty and has a message to share on the Ypsilon Beauty Blog, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with their name and contact information. Thanks for reading!