Health Team

North Carolina crowns first bald beauty queen

Posted March 27, 2011
Updated April 10, 2011

— A Raleigh woman who lost her hair to an autoimmune disease was crowned Saturday as North Carolina's first bald beauty queen.

Sandra Dubose-Gibson, a married mother of two girls, was selected as the 2011 Mrs. Black North Carolina at a pageant in Raleigh.

Twelve years ago, at age 25, Dubose-Gibson lost all her hair to alopecia, a disease that causes the body's immune system to attack hair follicles.

bald beauty queen N.C. crowns bald beauty queen

As Mrs. Black North Carolina, Dubose-Gibson will travel the state encouraging women of all races to value their inner beauty.

"My mission is to be the catalyst that enables women to heal the experiences that have eroded and challenged their self-esteem," she said in a statement. "I am here to help them see the beautiful human beings they truly are and boldly celebrate that beauty and strength from the inside out."

Last summer, Dubose-Gibson talked to WRAL's Dr. Allen Mask about her experiences with alopecia.

She said the loss of her hair left her depressed at first, but she came to realize that her hair didn't define her beauty.

Dubose-Gibson created a support group for women with alopecia, made a documentary about her experiences, and wrote and recorded a song that's a personal anthem about discovering her real beauty and purpose. She works as inspirational speaker.

"I was chosen to carry this burden, and it's not a burden at all," Dubose-Gibson said. "It's really been a blessing for me."


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  • CONUNDRUM Apr 1, 2011

    In response to jellygirl and cherylpoea1, White people can have Mrs White NC pageant but you're right, the NAACP would protest it but it would still be up to the White pageant to keep it going (I'm pretty sure there is some pageant with all White contestants in NC but calls the pageant something else than Mrs. White NC). BUT what some people are not empathizing is the historical reason for Mrs. Black NC pageant, which traditionally practice ILLEGAL discrimination. (Now the pageant is under "new" management, which would "never do that") and also the culture of people not believing that Black is beautiful.

    Let's be honest even in Black pageantry, a bald woman wouldn't be a traditional winner. Which is the reason why this is news. So its hard to imagine a Mrs. NC (despite race or ethnic group) as Black bald woman.

  • wildcat Mar 28, 2011

    BEAUTIFUL! What an inspiration she is to all ladies that has alopecia. May God continue to bless her and all that has to deal with alopecia.

  • luv4ubaskets Mar 28, 2011

    History: When Black women were not allowed in White pagents; Black folks started their own pagents. They wanted to recognized Black Beauty too. Keep in mind segregated pageants and events started because White America didn't want us part of their pageants and events.

  • DeathRow-IFeelYourPain-NOT Mar 28, 2011

    I whole-heartedly agree with cherylpoea1 and jellygirl. But I also don't believe this is the proper forum for that discussion.

  • twoods7 Mar 28, 2011

    Yawwwwwn. This is news; seriously?

  • BigUNCFan Mar 28, 2011

    Congrats to a beautiful lady.

  • wdprice3 Mar 28, 2011

    Ahh, such contests display the unmentioned roots of racism!

  • jellygirl Mar 28, 2011

    Why do we have a Mrs. Black North Carolina? Doesn't seem quite right since you can't go around have Mrs. White North Carolina? That being said, she is a beautiful.

  • cherylpoea1 Mar 28, 2011

    Why can't we have an all white contest?????? The NAACP would stop it in it's tracks saying its racial!!!!!! It's ok for them but not for the whites.. Think about it.

  • boatrokr Mar 28, 2011

    What a terrific lady. Congratulations on your win. I know you'll inspire teen girls who need a boost to their own self-esteem.