Miss Universe Australia 2015 Finalist – Melissa Barnard

Well, it’s that time of year when the search to find Miss Universe Australia is well underway with finalists being selected across the country.
Early next month at the Sofitel on Collins Melbourne the judging panel have the incredibly hard job of selecting the 2015 Miss Universe Australia.

Today we are chatting with finalist Melissa Barnard from Western Australia who is one of the national finalists who will be competing for the 2015 title of Miss Universe Australia and hoping to follow in the footsteps of Jennifer Hawkins, Rachael Finch, Jesinta Campbell and last years winner Tegan Martin.

First of all the all-important introduction tell us a little about yourself…?
Being passionate about the beauty industry for some time and formally training as a hairdresser, I took the plunge and opened my own business earlier this year and I am thoroughly enjoying the process of building my brand and business. I also enjoy fitness outside of my day-to-day work schedule and there’s nothing better than getting home, taking my dog for a walk and working out!

Melissa Congratulations on making it so far in such a coveted competition! We have to ask how has the overall experience been so far …?   And how are you feelings in the lead up to the finals. ..?
Being a contestant from Western Australia, I have been so fortunate to be a part of a group which has become so close over the past seven months leading up to the final – the process of meeting new people and getting to know all the finalists has been so rewarding. The biggest challenge leading up to the National Final is being organized and also maintaining my nerves! I’m excited to get to Melbourne and meet all of the other finalists and I’m looking forward to the process. Miss-Universe-Australia-2015-Finalist---Melissa-Barnard2

With contestants coming from all over the country and bringing their own individual flare
What do you think will set you out from the rest of the finalists  competing in the 2015 competition …?
 I believe that Miss Australia should be someone who represents our diverse country not only physically but emotionally. I believe that my look is a modern take on Australian beauty but I also believe my views and opinions represent young Australians and their ability to speak truthfully and openly about many topics.

What is something people might find interesting about yourself …?
The other WA contestants and I were lucky enough to visit the BaliLife Orphanage where we were able to interact with all of the children and perform for them. I think many people would find it interesting to know that I have a passion for child welfare and this experience proved to me how important it is for me to pursue my passions in helping others in need.  

Speaking of a person’s unique flare or style what would you say is your best style or beauty secret …?
Being in the Beauty Industry I love keeping up to date with make-up and hair trends. Although keeping up with such trends can put stress on your hair and skin, my best kept Beauty secret would be the treatments and products I use on both my hair and skin to keep it healthy and hydrated.

With Fitness becoming more and more a part of a person’s personal style how would you describe your fitness regime and how it relates to your life …?
I really enjoy fitness as I like challenging my body in order to feel healthy and full of energy. Fitness has become a huge part of my life as I now box, walk and train outdoors regularly and I have found that I am healthier than ever and have more energy to keep up with the Miss Universe Australia schedule!

Who or what inspired you to get involved in the Miss Universe Australia Pageant …? What drew you to such a competition ….?
Over the years of watching the pageant I have noticed a certain glow that contestants have when they get up on the stage. They always look so happy and full of life, because why wouldn’t they be? its an amazing experience. I think that Miss Universe really helps you grow as a women and gives you the confidence to accomplish all of your dreams, big or small.

Speaking of inspiration who inspires you most …?
People who genuinely inspire me are not Celebrities but people in my own community. One that’s really stands out is most definitely a woman in Western Australia that got set alight deliberately by another woman. This happend almost 3 years ago and watching her transformation and seeing how strong and admirable a woman can be after such a tragic and horrific experience is amazing. not only is she strong she has held so many functions for charity. Her story is definitely a story that hits close to my heart and Inspires me everyday.

The Miss Universe Pageant has a long history of associating with charity are there any social causes that are particularly close to your heart that you would like to  use the platform of miss universe to advance …?
As i have spoken so Highly about the Importance of Child Welfare  I am fortunate enough to be a part of the ToyBox children’s charity thanks to the Miss Universe program and have found it to be incredibly rewarding working with sick and disadvantaged children in order to bring happiness and enjoyment to their lives. I believe an investment in the welfare of all children is important for our future and I would like to use the Miss Universe platform to encourage people to be involved with existing charities focused around adolescent development and education. Another Massive Charity close to my heart would be any sort of Animal rescue programs. I try to donate to different sorts or causes as often as I can but mainly to the RSPCA. I love animals and I feel like I would love to use my Platform to do more and fight for them as they cannot fight for themselves. I have Applied to be a foster care taker for abandoned or abused dogs and so far that’s the little bit that I have done around my community, but I feel I would love to do so much more!

What is something you hope to bring out of the Miss Universe Australia Pageant …? I hope that this experience provides me with the focus, drive and determination to succeed in my personal and professional life. I feel that Miss Universe Australia provides girls with a platform to feel beautiful and confident whilst developing personal skills which we can use throughout our personal lives. I also foresee my newfound friendships lasting a lifetime and that, to me, is priceless.

Now the Quick 5

What is something you find yourself always saying …?
You only live once.

Your Favourite place in the world to wind down and relax …?
Wherever the weather is warm and tropical. I just came back from Bali and lets just say I didn’t want to leave!

What song would you say is your personal anthem or theme song …?
Titanium by David Guetta. I listen to that song and feel Empowered to be fearless.

If you could give yourself one piece of advice 5 years ago what would it be …? 
To save money and Invest. these are my goals right now and I wish I had of started earlier.

And Finally five things you cant live without …?

My Family, Boyfriend, Rambo (my dog), Friends and Food.

Spend your Sunday poolside sipping Veuve Clicquot at W Brisbane