Mitzi Danielson-Kaslik, a 19-year-old university student from Douglas, has reached the finals of World Top Model.

Mitzi is one of 50 finalists to be chosen from around 10,000 applicants worldwide.

The finals will consist of two weeks in the Maldives, with various categories which will lead up to the final awards night, which she says will be streamed on the HBO TV channel.

She applied to the competition after finding out about it through Miss Atlantic, a pageant that she recently competed in.

Mitzi said: ‘I saw that one of the girls there was going to apply for Top Model England which is run by the same people and I thought I would like to apply for the top model of the world.

‘When I was there I asked if anyone knew how to apply, and from then I just kept going through the rounds.’

While she has not had to pay yet, she will need to pay for her flights to the Maldives, accommodation and various outfits.

It is for individuals aged 20 to 30, and although Mitzi will be 19 at the time of the finals, she said they made an exception for her.

World Top Model is not called a pageant but Mitzi says it is very similar to one.

As well as having an overall winner, participants can win in the categories: Miss Congeniality, Miss Photogenic, Miss Charity, Miss Swimwear and Miss Evening Gown.

She said: ‘I wouldn’t regard myself as partaking in pageants on a regular basis, simply because it is expensive, and my goal isn’t to go into Miss World.

‘I do more online competitions, photo shoots and day modelling jobs.’

Mitzi explained that pageants have changed a lot, and that for a lot of women they can be very empowering.

‘Pageantry in the 70s I think is difficult to call empowering, but I think now, largely pageants have evolved an awful lot,’ she said.

‘For example, they are letting married women into Miss World now.

‘Nowhere near has it evolved enough but it has evolved to be more inclusive and there is a greater variety of people who go into it.

‘I think it is not a bad thing, and I think that pageantry for a lot of women is incredibly empowering and exciting, and largely now pageants are run by women, so it used to be men getting the money and men judging.

‘I think that when it is run by men it is difficult to say that is very empowering for women, particularly when you see some of the commentary that they used to have.

‘You also used to have to be weighed before the pageants, they have dropped that for Miss Universe, although they have not dropped it for World Top Model.

‘Having said that, I eat three meals a day, I work out five times a week, which is not a crazy amount, so I think that is a step in the right direction.’

She added: ‘I find modelling as a whole really empowering and I really enjoy it.

‘I started when I was 14 and I found it incredibly empowering. At that age you can get body issues and you find yourself uncomfortable in your own skin. Modelling really helped me to overcome that and I found it really enjoyable.’

She started modelling when someone asked if they could take pictures of her hair. Mitzi then helped someone else gain experience in photography, where they would take portraits of her.

During lockdown, she says her Instagram blew up from 1,000 followers to 12,000, and since she has been offered brand deals and featured in magazine covers.

The category that Mitzi is particularly keen to win is Miss Charity.

She said: ‘Best swimwear, things like that are based around something you chose to wear and how you look. Miss Charity is based on how you choose to represent certain charities.

‘It is not only how much you made as well, it is the causes you chose.’

On top of university and modelling, Mitzi is in the process of setting up her own charity called Helping Hand.

It provides cards for individuals who have difficulty communicating their circumstances, so they can, if they struggle in the public, show the card and people can understand their situation.

This is the charity that she will be representing at the competition.

The final World Top Model will take place in October, and in the meantime, Mitzi will be busy preparing.