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things i learned from drag race


Hi, it’s Mio. Today I am going to share with you three things that I learned from RuPaul’s Drag Race.


Recently, I have been into watching RuPaul’s Drag Race on Netflix. First, what is RuPaul’s Drag Race? It is an American reality competition television series, and the host is the charismatic drag queen, RuPaul. Dozens of drag queens who have passed the audition to participate in this race have to survive through weekly challenges to win. The two queens who are the lowest ranked in that week have to do a lip-sync battle to compete for their life in front of judges including RuPaul, and the queen who loses will drop out that week.


This is a really tough race. There are many kinds of challenges, for example, singing, sewing, doing musicals, dancing and comedy. Queens compete to show “Charisma, Uniqueness, Nerve & Talent” through those tough challenges, and the winner becomes America's next drag superstar.


Last year, this show was awarded the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Reality-Competition Program. The show started in 2009, and last year in 2018, season 10 was broadcasted. The show has been renewed for season 11, which is so amazing. Anyway, through this show, the drag queens teach us many things. I learned three things from them, which are Beauty, Strength and Love.


First, Beauty. I was so surprised at how they do their makeup when I watched it for the first time. It is very advanced and so high quality. Every week at the end of the show, there is a runway called the “main stage”. For this runway, the queens showcase their makeup and outfits to fit the theme that RuPaul gave them. The show shows the makeup and dress up process, which is one of my favorite moments on this show. I was so surprised at how they transform their makeup for each theme. The shining moment that they change from men to drag queens, I think it is so exciting for them, and even we, the audience who are watching get so excited too.


The thing I was most surprised with is the eyebrow. I got to know that using a glue stick can glue the eyebrows down from this show. Glue the eyebrows down, put the powder on, draw new eyebrows and done! It is just like magic. There are other things like how to apply eyeshadow, base foundation, contour cream, highlight… they understand the shape of their face, eyebrows, eyes and nose, and they know how to enhance their beauty. I want to imitate their skills as a woman who wears makeup.


The second thing that I learned from them is Strength. Like I said, I like the moment they put on their makeup -- it is the best moment not only because we can watch their makeup process but also because we can hear the real voices from their hearts. When they put on their makeup, they talk about their past or conflict. For example, being bullied by their friends only because he is gay, being taken to the therapy by his parents so he would return to be a normal boy and how his heart broke, being taken to the church by his parents and being made to write all the names of everyone whom he has had sex with. I was so shocked.


I think it is painful for them to be hurt by others only for being gay, for being non-white -- for being the minority. They are human beings just like we are human beings. It is as natural for them to wear makeup and be drag queens as I wear makeup and dress up every day. We are both humans, but each of us has a great and beautiful and shining personality in our own ways. There is no right or wrong about sex. I respect them for being who they are no matter what others say. I think they are so strong for overcoming the past, conflict and painful experiences.


The last thing that I learned from them is Love. This race is a very hard race both mentally and physically. During the race, they argue every time. Things like pointing out others’ bad attitudes, makeup and dress. Fighting because of a discrepancy in opinions during collaboration work and being sarcastic. But after fighting, they reflect on their attitude and try to reconcile (although it doesn’t work out well every time). They try to respect and accept others, and realise the importance of tolerance.

彼女たちから学んだ事の最後は、「愛」です。このレースは、体力的にも精神的にも大変なレースです。レースの中で、彼女たちは毎回言い合いをします。他の人の悪い態度、メイクやドレスを指摘したり、共同作業中の意見の食い違いから喧嘩になったり、悪口を言い合ったり。でも喧嘩の後、お互いに反省して、ちゃんと仲直りするように努力します。(毎回、いい方向に行くとは限りませんが) 尊敬して相手を受け入れるように努め、寛容である事の大切さに気付きます。

Not every queen has had supportive people around them. Like I wrote in the section for Strength, some of them have had painful experiences. They have a compassionate heart for each other and understand and accept their pain. This is such a beautiful moment. This is the moment that I can feel Love from them. During the show I sometimes hear the phrase “this is not the RuPaul’s best friend race”, but I think this race is like that a little bit too.


I think these three things I learnt from them are so important in our daily lives. And now about being gay. Sadly, it is the reality that there is still prejudice against the LGBT community. But now, the world is changing. The world must change. There are no borders within sex and race. I respect their ways of life as drag queens. They shine doing what they want to do. I want to shine doing what I like, just like them.


You can watch RuPaul’s Drag Race on Netflix. Have you checked it out yet? Currently, all the seasons from season 1 to season 10 are being streamed. If you have not seen it yet, please check it out and learn lots of things from them!


Images from Tumblr

English Edited by Kiara

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