In an intimate session with the former Miss Universe Malaysia, Elaine shares her thoughts on the top qualities Miss Universe Malaysia should possess, and how she intends to coach Carey.
Q. What do you think a top quality Miss Universe Malaysia should possess?
E. Apart from the physical attributes, she’s got to be of a certain height, age, a certain kind of look. I think she’s got to have the kind of eloquence and intelligence, she should know Malaysia in and out, understand the different cultures we have in our country, and most importantly, she’s got to be hip, urban, relevant and real. I think those are one of the many key factors to become the next Miss Universe Malaysia. It’s really not easy being a beauty queen!
Q. Since your reign as Miss Universe Malaysia , have you noticed any differences or changes in the pageant today?
E. I think the quality of girls are getting a lot better. More girls are willing to join because a lot of parents are willing to support them. And with family support, they think of the pageant as being a lot more prestigious. It becomes a more legitimate platform for the girls to delve into, be it in the entertainment industry, or industry for that matter.
Q. When you mentor Carey for the 62nd Miss Universe Pageant in Moscow, what will be the point of focus be?
E. When it comes to mentoring Carey, it’s going to be very goal-focused for me. A lot of girls do not have a solid reason why they participate in beauty pageants, and when you don’t have a solid reason when you do anything, you can’t go very far. The reason why you enter is going to be at the back of your mind all the time. When you get nervous, when you think your dress is not pretty enough, when you think you’re going to fall on stage, think about your goals at the back of your mind. Whether it’s fame, to make mom and dad proud, or to prove something to the world, when you have this in mind, none of the little stuff will matter to you.
Q. As for the new Miss Universe Malaysia participants, what do you think can help them stand out from the rest?
E. That’s usually something the judges will decide, but from the shortlist, basically I think whoever is responsible for picking them will have an eye for what we’re looking for, and again she’s got to be of the right criteria as I mentioned earlier. Another important thing is that she’s got to captivate the judges and the audience. Personality is very important as well! No one wants to work with a person who’s difficult.
Q. Speaking of judges, do you ever feel the decision of the judges could be a little biased at times? For Miss Universe 2013, alleged playboy Scott Disick [Kourtney Kardashian’s boyfriend] was named one of the judges. Do you feel like a contestant with a high chance could somehow lose her opportunity to win?
E. We may not always agree with every single judge on the panel, but there’s also probably a reason why he was chosen. He’s popular, people will want to tune in to watch it. Plus, he’s got a great sense of style and an eye for beautiful things. I mean, look at who he got himself two kids with! I’m sure Donald Trump has his reasons for picking the judges on the show. But at the end of the day, it’s a competition. The ball is round, so you never know who might win this year.
Q. Is there a personal philosophy that you’d like Carey to adopt, for any Malaysian girl for that matter?
E. I have many philosophies, but when it comes to competitions, I’m in it to win it! As much as it’s just Carey going to Moscow, it’s much of me trying to prepare her to go. So, I’m in it to win it, it’s going to be goal-based. 100 percent as possible, 100 percent of the time. And no procrastinating! That’s just one of the philosophies that I myself try to adopt everyday. I try to always leave someone better off than I found them!
Watch a short clip of our interview with Elaine here: