Proud parents can help build their child's future by entering her in cute baby contests. From magazine covers and modeling jobs to cash and products, learn how to help your baby capture first prize. If you're interested in sharing your baby's beauty with the world, consider entering him into one of the competitions discussed in the sections below.
Before entering your child into a contest, make sure you understand the rules, potential costs, and rewards whether in the form of payment, exposure, or free products. You should also be aware of what the terms are when you submit your child's photo. According to an article on entering baby contests on Babble.com, the fine print on a photo contest may include using your child's image for other campaigns and advertising beyond just the contest.
If you are entering a contest online, you'll also want to consider and be aware if the website will identify your child. Many parents are concerned with not identifying their child for safety reasons online, so make sure you understand whether a contest's position on this before entering your little one. Some sites, such as Parents.com, promise not to identify your child (they do however use a display name of your choosing for your account).
Infant Photo Competitions
The contests in this section work well for families who wish to show off their adorable new baby. The easy entry procedures and stress-free participation make them good choices for all parents.
Gerber Photo Search
Gerber has long been synonymous with adorable, smiling babies. If you think your little darling could be the next Gerber baby, enter the company's annual contest. It is open to children between one day and 48 months old as long. Children must be legal residents of the United States, the District of Columbia, or Puerto Rico to be eligible. Children must not be represented by an agency or manager.
- Gerber.com and enter the photo online during the submission period. There are five different 'milestone' categories, ranging from birth to preschooler, and children can be entered into each category only once. Photos must have been taken with 30 days of submission. Judging criteria is based on overall visual appeal, the expressiveness of the child, and how consistent the photo is with Gerber's 'Growing Up Gerber' mission.
- Prizes: The Grand Award Recipient receives a cash prize of $50,000 which can be used for the child's future education or other purposes, and another cash prize of $15,400 which can be used or taxes associated with the prize. Winners also receive $15,00 worth of Gerber's clothing, and the opportunity to appear in Gerber advertisements for the following year with paid travel expenses. Winners for each 'milestone' receive a cash prize of $350, along with $750 worth of merchandise from the Gerber Childrenswear line.
Bidiboo is a website with a contest for kids of all ages. For babies, there is a zero to three years of age category. Contests are done monthly, and winners can win up to $1000. To enter their little one, parents must connect with Bidiboo via Facebook.
The contests are done in the form of 'votes.' It is free to join. You can vote every ten minutes, but individuals are limited to voting for the same participant only ten times per day. If you don't want to wait ten minutes to vote, the website allows you to purchase bonuses, so your votes are in without having to wait.
Parents can choose whether they want to allow everyone access to their child's folder, allow friends and family to see the photo on social media, or keep the photo private. The website does identify the name and age of participants in their contests if you make the child's image public.
Our Cute Babies
Our Cute Babies holds a monthly contest with a contest for children two and under. There are 75 categories including action shots, siblings, beautiful eyes, messy kids, and favorite toys. There is no cost to enter, and you can upload as many photos as you want. The contest runs from the beginning of the month to the end of the month, but it is not carried over to the next month. There is no monetary prize, but winners are featured in the Our Cute Babies Magazine.
There are two different ways to win this contest. Visitors can vote for their favorite photos, and the top three winners in each category will receive a ¼ page photo in Our Cute Babies Magazine. Two Contest Administrators and three guest judges will choose 90 photos from all categories to be featured in a ½ page photo in the magazine.
New Parent Magazine
The website for New Parent Magazine has a weekly cutest baby contest that offers the opportunity to win unspecified cash and prizes. Once you have created an account, you'll upload your adorable photo, and it will be posted on the website. Registered used vote for the cutest baby that week; however, each use is limited to one vote per week to keep things fair.
The weekly winners can advance to semifinal and final rounds, and ultimately one winner will be chosen to appear on a featured issue of the print magazine and receive the Grand Prize, which is to be announced. New Parent retains all rights to the photo once you enter the contest.
The Cute Kid
The Cute Kid offers five categories based on age, including zero to one year. Parents must register on the website, and each photo requires a $19.95 entry fee. The Cute Kid offers a monthly showcase contest, in which one overall winner gets $1000, and four get $500 in each category. Honorable Mention winners receive prizes, but not cash.
The Grand Prize annual winner is selected from monthly category winners and in addition to other prizes, will receive a college tuition investment fund of $10,000, which under the 529 plan is expected to exceed $25,000 in value over a 16-year time frame. Monthly winners are announced approximately 15 days after the contest ends.
Participants are judged by casting agents and professional photographers on appearance, charisma, expression, and image concept/setting. Entry in this contest means talent, modeling, and casting agents may see your baby's photographs.
Highlights Hello Magazine
Highlights Hello, designed for little ones aged zero to two, offers babies the chance to be featured on the back cover of the magazine. Parents can enter their contact information and upload an image of their infant waving or looking at a copy of the magazine. There is no registration or entry fee required.
Baby Modeling Contests
If you think your child is beautiful enough to score an early modeling career, consider entering her into one of the competitions in this section. Typical prizes include magazine covers, cash, and modeling contracts.
My Star Kid
To enter your child in the My Star Kid contest, you must create a profile to join. There is no entry fee for monthly $500 drawing, which is based on your activity on the website, referred to as 'Starpower' (this includes things like getting votes, uploading photos, sharing contest/photos).
There are three other contests My Star Kid offers. However, they all require an entry fee. Children are judged picture clarity, personality, and modeling skill, and potential in the modeling industry. These are judged by professionals in the modeling industry.
- Monthly or Tuition Prize: To enter the monthly $1000 prize or the annual $25,000 tuition prize, parents must join My Star Kid for a membership fee of $19.95, which also gives parents information on the modeling industry and casting call, as well as parenting magazine subscriptions and free gifts.
- Grand Modeling Prize: Entering the annual $100,000 modeling prize includes both the cash prize and an opportunity for the child be in a photo shoot and film a television commercial, with the opportunity for the child to be seen on national print and media advertisements. To be eligible for this prize, parents must pay an initial $19.95 fee to join My Star Kid, as well as a recurring month fee of $9.95 to be SuperStar members.
Show Off Clicks
Show Off Clicks is an annual international contest with a variety of age groups, including a zero to two category. To enter little ones in this contest, parents should register on the Shop Off Clicks website and upload a photo of their child. Entry is free, and there are two levels in the contest.
- National Level: The first level of the contest is national and is judged by a combination of public voting and a select jury panel. Winners of the national contest receive The Fame Award, which offers them a digital certificate and registration on Show off Clicks as a registered model ($500 value). Professionals at Show Off Clicks also promote the winners help facilitate modeling contracts.
- International Level: Those that move on to the international Wall of Fame are judged by international public votes and a jury panel. The top 15 overall winners receive a professional modeling portfolio, including a photo shoot by a celebrity photographer and the potential to be featured in a music video (valued at $750).
- Star Kids: From the top 15 international winners, three children are chosen as Star Kids and are awarded an international fashion photo shoot and a one-year professional modeling contract (worth $15,000). Travel expenses for the child and one parent or guardian are also provided.
Sunburst Model Search Pageant
Sunburst Model Search Pageant allows babies to enter and be accompanied by a parent on stage. The company has been involved in the modeling and pageant industry since 1978 and holds local, state, and international pageants. Categories include Baby (under one), Tiny (one year), and Little (two to three years). Parents must fill out a registration form and pay a $45 entry fee.
Parents are encouraged to get their little ones to smile and show personality. Babies and toddlers are judged on overall looks, appearance, and personality. Winners receive $250 cash prize and both winners and runners-up at the state level receive crowns, trophies, and entry fee paid for the state finals.
State finalists advance to the international competition. At the international level, participants are offered exposure to modeling scouts looking for new talent. All winners at this level receive a $1000 cash prize, with the opportunity to win up to $10,000 for top scorers.
Bailey Agency Babies and Kids Contest
Bailey's School of Fashion, a fashion and modeling school created by celebrity Cynthia Bailey offers a monthly contest with a division for babies from birth to age one and toddlers between the ages of two and three. Parents must submit a $20 processing fee and email the Bailey agency a photo of their child along with information such as the child's age, full name, and contact information.
Winners are chosen based on overall appearance and will be featured on the Bailey Agency website and social media sites. Winners also receive an autographed photo of Cynthia Bailey.
Children in Film
The Children in Film website has a mission to empower parents and guardians with information on helping children success and stay safe in the entertainment industry. Each month Children in Film holds a photo contest for all ages with one boy and one girl winner. Babies must be at least 15 days old to be entered in the contest.
Parents must register for at least a free basic membership on the site, but entry is free. Parents can submit the photo as part of the registration process or via email. Winners receive exposure on the website and a free lifetime enhanced membership to the website (approximately $150 value annually).
Posh Child Magazine
Posh Child Magazine offers several contests for children and has an age category for babies age three and under. Only high-resolutions photos can be submitted. Each photo submitted must be accompanied by a $10 entry fee and offers the chance to get exposure in the world of modeling.
The cover contest offers the opportunity for the baby to be featured on the front or back cover of the magazine, along with an interview spread, while the monthly Fashion Icon contest offers to receive a feature spread in the magazine.
Monthly contest participants offer the chance to win $300 cash, be featured in an upcoming issue of the magazine, and have the chance to qualify for the Model of the Year title. The magazine's Most Beautiful contest includes being featured on the cover of a special edition and an exclusive Model Winners Photo Shoot.
Well-respected Parents magazine has dispensed sound advice to new parents for decades. Winners of their yearly magazine cover contest receive an expense paid journey to New York for a cover photo shoot, exposure on the website, and other potential prizes. Parents must register on the website, complete the registration form, and upload up to six photos of their little one. Babies must be between the ages of three months and two years to enter.
More Contest Sources to Consider
In addition to the sources mentioned above for contests and competitions, there are also other places that may offer contests. Prizes range from simple exposure to free products. These contests may offer annual competitions, or accept ongoing cutest baby of the month or week submissions. Consider checking the following:
- Local news stations and newspapers
- Local radio stations
- City or region-specific magazines
- Department stores or local businesses
- County fairs and festivals
- Hospitals and birthing centers
- Brands of baby and child-related products occasionally offer photo contests (Cheerios, Boppy, and Dreft for example)
Tips for Contests
To make the most of your experience, whether entering a local newspaper competition or preparing for a modeling contest, consider the following tips.
Take Your Best Photo
You don't have to be a professional photographer to take an excellent photo, (and you've probably had plenty of practice taking snapshots of your baby) but there are a few ways to make sure your little one's picture stands out.
- Take the picture when your baby is relaxed, comfortable, and happy.
- Put him in comfortable clothing that isn't screaming with prints - solid colors are often best.
- Use natural light to your advantage to get the best exposure.
- Avoid cluttered or distracting backgrounds.
Consider Pros and Cons
Like any activity you pursue with your child, there are pros and cons to evaluate. Whether you are entering a contest for fun, or for the potential of getting your child started in modeling, you'll want to make the decision that works best for you and your baby.
- Enhancing self-esteem
- Positive body image
- Cash prizes
- College tuition
- Modeling contracts
- Free products or other prizes
Cons to consider:
- Time investment
- Money investment
- Scam risk
- Stress and anxiety
- Overexposure to public
Keep It Fun
Make sure to do your research before entering any contest so you understand the terms beforehand and it can be a great experience for you and your child. If you make cute baby contests pleasant and free of anxiety for you and your child, it will yield a positive outcome for everyone. Remember a child is a child and each of his activities should have the ultimate goal of fun.