After years of competing in beauty pageants and even becoming Miss Iceland in 2015, Arna Ýr Jónsdóttir is taking a break from the pageant world after a particularly unsettling experience.
Arna was about to compete in the Miss Grand International pageant in Las Vegas when its owner, Nawat Itsaragrisil, advised she drop a few pounds before the competition. She was stunned. In an interview with the Iceland Monitor, Arna said a spokesperson for Nawat explicitly told her to "stop eating breakfast, eat just salad for lunch and drink water every evening until the contest."
Deciding she had enough, Arna dropped out of the competition — but not before writing a letter to Nawat himself. In the letter shared on her Instagram, she said, "Your staff told me that I had to loose [sic] weight for the finals because I have to [sic] much fat on me . . . they told me to eat less and then you would like me more." Adding, "Actually if anyone tells me that I'm too fat or whatever, they just don't deserve me."
Her letter ended with a general critique of the pageant and a word of advice to pageants, in general. She said, "The year is 2016 and if you are gonna hold an international pageant you have to be able to see the international beauty."
Following her departure from the competition, Arna shared in another Instagram post that she would be staying in Las Vegas to "explore the city" and of course, "eat good food."