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9 Facts About Miss Universe That Show Why It’s the Most Popular Beauty Pageant

After 70 years of being created, Miss Universe is still one of the most popular beauty pageants in the world. In its long history, many anecdotes and memorable moments have made it a classic event that’s still relevant today.

At Bright Side, we discovered that over the years there have been several interesting stories surrounding this beauty event, so we want to share them with you.

1. Some queens have been stripped of their crowns.

3 winners have held the Miss Universe title for only a short period of time after they gave up the crown or were stripped of it by the pageant organization itself. In 1974, Amparo Muñoz, the only Spanish representative to have won first place in the competition, resigned after just 6 months.

Then, in 2002, Oxana Fedorova was removed after 4 months, and in 2015, Colombian Ariadna Gutiérrez was stripped of the crown due to a mistake made by the gala’s host, Steve Harvey, when announcing the winner.

2. Only one country has reigned for 2 years in a row.

A feat that only Venezuela’s candidates have achieved is repeating the crown for 2 consecutive years. The beautiful women who won the title were Dayana Mendoza in 2008, and Estefania Fernandez the following year.

3. A contest in Texas was the precursor of Miss Universe.

What is known as Miss Universe today had its beginnings as the International Pageant of Pulchritude, whose initial purpose was to promote Texas as a tourist destination. Therefore, the first edition of this pageant was held in Galveston, Texas. Its concept later evolved, giving way to the first edition of Miss Universe in 1952.

4. There is an age limit to participate.

Among the requirements that the Miss Universe organization establishes for the participants is the minimum and maximum age to compete. According to their current rules, at the moment the pageant begins, they must be no younger than 18 or older than 28 years old.

5. They were crowned in bathing suits.

The beautiful ball gowns in which the winners are seen being crowned were not the rule before the 1960s. Before that decade, the new beauty queen was crowned wearing her bathing suit.

6. Mexico has won wearing red dresses.

The 3 titles that Mexico has won in Miss Universe have been received with candidates who have worn a red dress in their final parade. This is how Lupita Jones won the 1991 crown, Ximena Navarrete, the 2010 crown, and Andrea Meza, the 2020 crown; all of them have the same detail in common.

7. There was an attempt at sabotage.

The road to Miss Universe does not seem easy, and this could be seen in the attempted sabotage experienced by a contestant from Puerto Rico. In 2008, when Ingrid Marie Rivera was competing in her country to win the title of Miss Puerto Rico, her clothes and belongings were sprayed with pepper spray.

This attempt to stop her participation in the show was ultimately unsuccessful, and she ended up winning the crown.

8. Its costume gala is a tradition.

During the competition, there are several events in which the participants demonstrate their talents, and one of those that have endured over the years has been the national costume show. In this gala, the different delegates wear costumes that allude to their countries of origin. It has been held for almost 60 years.

9. The tallest and shortest winners

In the history of Miss Universe, there have also been some records. The tallest height ever recorded for a delegate is Amelia Vega for the Dominican Republic, with 6’2″. And the shortest contestants have been 5’3″, in 1965, Apasra Hongsakula, from Thailand, and in 1958, Luz Marina Zuluaga, from Colombia.

What stories about beauty pageants in your country can you share with us?

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