On behalf of all of the U&I Lifestyle team, I can proudly say that we are absolutely honoured (and mega excited!) to be sponsoring Natalie Campbell, the current Miss West Sussex, and now finalist of Miss Galaxy UK!
Natalie beat thousands of other hopeful entries wanting to make the grand finals to also compete for the national title of Ms. Galaxy UK 2017.
The Miss Galaxy competition is taking place in March, so with just a matter of weeks to go, we thought we would catch up with Natalie and find out a little bit more about her participation in the Pageant world!
Hi Nat! Before we get into the nitty gritty details of the competition, why don't you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Of course! I'm 32 and half Brazilian, I was born there. My mum is from Brazil and my dad is English. I moved to England when I was 7, and since then I've mainly lived in and around Surrey, the West Sussex way most of my life.
We love that area! We grew up in Surrey, so we know it well!
I Love living smack bang between Brighton and London, two of the best cities and my favourite places!
If you could describe yourself in 3 words, what would they be?
Passionate, affectionate, foodie!
A woman after my own heart! What do you usually like doing in your free time? Do you have any hobbies?
I love exercise, especially boxing and yoga. I started Crossfit recently which is insane! I also love being creative. I wrote children's stories which I hope to publish one day. I'm quite into my music, too. I used to play guitar, and love singing, Karaoke is my thing! I'm strangely good at bowling which I'm learning isn't necessarily a good thing when on a first date - men don't seem to like losing or nearly losing (laughs)! I love a good holiday, too, and exploring new places.
It sounds like you're a busy bee! Now, let's talk about the beauty world. Is the pageant world something you've always been interested in, or did you decide one day that you were just going to go for it?!
I modelled as a child and did some adverts and acting bits, but I had never done pageants. It's something I looked at last year as a goal to work towards to get myself in shape, there's nothing like having to appear on stage in a bikini to get your backside in the gym!
That's very true! If there's something that will motivate you, it's a beauty pageant! What made you apply for Miss Sussex, and what did you think you could bring to the competition?
I read an article last summer in the metro about these pageants, and the winner was a Vegan who I started to follow online. To cut a long story short, due to a Uterine disorder in which I suffer from, I turned to a clean Vegan diet to help my body heal naturally. Having the competition to aim for made me think. I could bring a good example of someone who had to work really hard to get there, with a good, varied, clean diet, as well as doing regular exercise.
Oh wow. That's really interesting. Well done for changing up your diet to something more natural, that can only be a good thing!
How did you feel when you won Miss Sussex, and you knew that you'd be entered into Miss Galaxy UK?
I was ecstatic! I supposedly beat quite a few to the post, and it felt amazing to know that my hard work that I had put in was starting to pay off. It gave me more focus, confidence, and determination to continue to be kind to my body.
Amazing. Congratulations! What are you most looking forward to in the competition? I'm looking forward to meeting the other girls, as I've heard good things about the positive and encouraging vibe that the Galaxy pageants have. I'll be nervous, but it'll be exciting, too!
How are you prepping for the competition?
For the grand final, I'm currently following a daily exercise programme, with one rest day a week (sometimes 2 rest days if I am really feeling it!). I have one cheat meal a week, but now with only 6 weeks to go, I'm eating 5 or 6 small meals a day which are high in protein. My meals range from pulses, beans, quinoa, Vegan protein shakes, nuts, seeds, and plenty of green leafy veg. Oh, and lots and lots of water! As well as that, the other important pillar is SLEEP! A solid 7 or 8 hours is essential for muscle repair and being rested enough to train properly.
Can you describe a typical day taking part in a pageant?
Well, this will be my first big one! But I know that it will involve practice, practice, more practice, interviews, make up, and hair and wardrobe changes!
Do you have any fashion or beauty icons that you look up to/that inspire you?
I like the healthy and strong look. I follow lots of people on Instagram who promote healthy, strong looks. I'm not interested in looking skinny, it's all about being healthy and strong. Fashion wise I can't say I'm up with any trends really as I live in gym gear mainly, but classic looks... "less is more" make up wise, but lashes are a must! I always keep up with mani's and pedi's as I am quite a girly girl when it comes to my appearance, I'm just not about the heavy make up look on a day-to-day basis. For a pageant, you have to cake it on, which for me is a little weird but equally a bit of fun too!
Have you learned anything about yourself since taking part in the beauty pageant competitions?
I've learned to love my body and respect it most definitely. I can't control the pain I get from the Adenomyosis (the Uterine disorder), so taking control of what I COULD meant what went into my mouth and how I exercised. I am more appreciative of the journey and not just the goal. Becoming strong physically helps with the mental side of things, too. I've realised that the way you look can be in your hands, and you have the power to change for the better. It's an amazing feeling!
If you could give advice to someone who's looking to enter the beauty pageant world, what would it be?
Do it for YOU. Enjoy the process and the journey, and see yourself only as the competition. Compete with yourself to be a better version of yourself, both physically and mentally every day. Mindset is everything. Also, HAVE FUN!
Well, we certainly can't wait to hear and see more about Natalie's journey! We'll be keeping up to date with her story on Instagram, and you can do so too, by following her @nataliedurazzocampbell.
As Natalie's sponsor, we are lucky enough to be attending the Miss Galaxy UK competition in March, so we will of course be taking plenty of photos and videos, and following up with a new blog post to let you all know how Natalie got on! Good luck, Natalie!!
In the meantime, why not come along to our Single Networking Event at Kouzu on Friday 10th February, where Natalie will be attending! You can come and meet Natalie, whilst enjoying a fun evening that'll be filled with Prosecco, delicious nibbles, and lots of exciting, young individuals, who will be there to network and have a great time.
You can click here to find out more information and purchase your ticket!