Class-12 pass out Ananya Khurana was surfing Instagram when she stumbled upon Skinella’s Match Me If You Can contest in April. She competed against 11,000 girls, between ages 15 to 25 from across the country, and won the title and a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh. Khurana, 17, who just finished high school from Prudence School, says, “The idea of this contest interested me because I would not be judged on the basis of my body, as I am skinny and wear braces.
Like I said during the Grand Finale, it’s the personality that matters, and what you feel inside out. So, I simply registered and participated in the rounds. I used to wait eagerly for the rounds.” About organising the event virtually, Dolly Kumar, Founder, Cosmic Nutracos, the parent company of skincare brand Skinella, says, “Since the inception of Skinella in 2017, we have organised three successful seasons of Skinderella a pageant where we don’t judge girls on the basis of their height, weight or the colour of the skin but on how spontaneous and confident they are being themselves.
Skinderella is all about breaking the stereotypes and the unrealistic standards of beauty imposed by society. This year due to the pandemic, we decided not to do Skinderella in the conventional way, but do something virtually. So we came up with this idea, equally credible and clutter-breaking. We introduced a new online property #MatchMeIfYouCan.” The contest started in mid-April, where the participants had to match ‘30 Ex Skinderellas faces’ to a host of clues.
“There were three rounds in total to reach the finale. The rounds used to be unveiled on Skinella’s website on specific dates. I used to eagerly wait for the rounds and my scores. We had to solve picture and video puzzles by 30 ex- Skindrellas 10 finalists each year. Based on the clues, we had to answer the questions,” says the Model Town resident, Khurana, an aspiring businesswoman who wants to pursue BBA. Though she was nervous because it was her first time participating in such a contest, “I feel that I am confident enough to put myself in the audience whenever asked.
My thoughts instil confidence in me. Moreover, I used to do a lot of research to complete these rounds,” she adds. The Top 10 finalists had to further compete in three rounds in the finale. “First was fastest fingers first, where we had to answer the correct answer fast. The Top 5 were selected in this round. In the second round, we had to answer two questions; from which Top 3 were selected. Finally, in the last round two questions were asked and I was declared the winner.
And all the rounds happened in duration of one hour.” The parameters to judge the Top 10 were simple - honesty, confidence and spontaneity. Kumar says, “We were impressed to hear the answers of all the girls and it was indeed a tough call as everyone performed well.” Khurana is a Kathak graduate, learning dance since the age of three.
“The one thing I have learnt after participating in the contest is that nothing is going to stop me if I want to achieve anything. Winning Miss Matchless crown and the R 1 lakh cash prize is something I will cherish all my life. It made me believe that I am beautiful the way I am. Now I don’t care what others say about my physique, I have my own definition of being beautiful and my parents as my biggest supporters,” she concludes.