“My soul is freed.”

Blush is applied to anxious cheekbones.  Heels are slipped on.  Contestants line up for the chance to capture–or defend–the title.  But this Rio beauty pageant isn’t one you can hope to glimpse on television.  It’s held within the walls of the Talavera Bruce penitentiary in Rio.  For the contestants, women serving prison time for various offenses, this is a rare and bittersweet opportunity to express beauty and spend time with family.

INSIDE A BRAZILIAN PRISON BEAUTY PAGEANT

Photo Credit: Photo by Ashton Mullins on Unsplash