Star of the Show

Senior Marcela Hymes’s on her success as a beauty pageant and runway model


Photo provided by Cynthia Hymes

“When I realized that I had won, there was so much euphoria, like it was a feeling I’d never felt in my life.”

This past May, senior Marcela Hymes participated in the annual Miss Houston Teen competition. While Hymes had started her career as a model at 14, this was her first ever beauty pageant, which proved to be a big difference from her earlier experiences.

“In modeling, you’re just wearing the clothes- you’re the clothing hanger. But for pageants, it’s a lot more about who you are and you’re displaying that. So it’s kind of like you are selling yourself instead of what you’re wearing,” Hymes said.

 Hymes sold herself well. Despite her inexperience with pageants, Hymes took home the crown as Miss Teen Houston 2022. 

“It was my first pageant, so it was a lot of new information for me, especially because I only had like two months to train because it was a really last minute decision. It was really fun, I met a lot of new people and I learned how to carry myself, so it’s easier to talk to people and not say weird things,” Hymes said. “I remember, I didn’t process that I had won because when you win a pageant, they originally say the other person’s name. They say, “and the first runner up is…” and they said the other girl’s name, and I thought she had won, because I had never experienced that before. The only reason I understood I had won was because I looked at my friend, Kennedy, and I saw her just crying.”

Since the victory, Hymes’s modeling career has flourished, becoming an incoming model for Tootsies, a Houston-based designer store, as well as traveling to Spain for a photoshoot. 

“[Spain] was pretty fun. I got to work with one of these photographers, his name was Carlos, and he just took a lot of pictures and he was really fun,” Hymes said. “It was just a fun experience because I’ve never traveled for modeling. Originally, it was just to build my portfolio, and then he wanted me to work with him again, and that’s when he introduced me to the CNA, a company I did a billboard for.”

Recently, she has modeled on the runway for Tootsies, a designer clothing store in Houston.

“[Tootsie’s] is probably my favorite modeling I’ve done before because I met [Jose] Altuve,” Hymes said. “Everybody there was really sweet and I actually got to model with my walking instructors, so it was just a really nice time.”

During the fall, she continued her modeling while also attempting to balance it with the demands of senior classes and volleyball season. 

“Luckily Coach Cat[aline] has been very patient, and she lets me work in the modeling with her as long as I tell her in advance,” Hymes said. “She’s been really great with that and let me still play even when I miss a practice.

Now that volleyball season is over, and graduation is only months away, Hymes will continue to pursue her career in modeling, particularly on the runway.