February 16, 2023

Empowering and supportive – taking part in pageants has provided a real self-esteem boost for plus size model Kimberly Bateman. 

Kimberly, who lives in Orpington, has received a number of pageant awards over the past few months and says taking part is about much more than just celebrating your outward appearance. 

Kimberly models her favourite Apples & Pears dresses

She explained: “Pageants aren’t just about the beauty side of it. It’s nice to dress up but it’s also about being part of something bigger, being part of a sisterhood and getting to know a lot of people who are beautiful both inside and out. 

“I’ve been through a lot over the years including domestic abuse and I also suffer from fibromyalgia and ME so I have to pace myself. 

“But I am 52 and having the time of my life dressing up and being a part of something special. My husband is amazing and has supported me throughout. He comes to all the events.” 

As well as picking up a 2022 Finalists sash from our friends at the Miss Voluptuous pageant, she also won the service award for doing the most volunteering over the year. 

Kimberly has since had a number of successes with the Kerri Parker Academy. She recently won Best Fashion Model, Covergirl Directors Choice and a New Ambassador award as well as being named runner-up in Most Potential category and the Covergirl Publicity Award. 

She is now looking forward to her next event with KPA in April where she will be wearing an Apples & Pears dress in the spring wear category. We can’t reveal which dress she will be wearing just yet but keep an eye on our socials for photos to follow! 

Kimberly is also making an appearance as Miss December on this year’s KPA calendar raising money for a charity which provides holistic cancer treatment. 

Perhaps the most empowering moment for Kimberly though came when she took part in the Warrior pageant for people living with an invisible illness or disability. 

“As part of this pageant I wore a bikini for one of the rounds. It was a big step for me but it made me feel so amazing. It wasn’t about winning that day. It was the fact that I felt amazing in myself. 

“I posted the photo of me in the bikini on my Instagram and Facebook and at first I thought maybe I shouldn’t have posted it but it turned out to be the best thing I have done. 

“Being involved in KPA has been amazing, it’s given me belief in myself. Every woman deserves to feel beautiful whether you are big or small, short or tall and we should all be able to celebrate our own unique bodies.” 

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