Miss Universe costumes are getting out of hand

What’s happened to the National Costumes at the Miss Universe pageant? Picture: Richard D Salyer/Miss Universe

WHEN the first Miss Universe, Finland’s Armi Kuusela, won the crown in 1952, she donned authentic Karelian clothing — featuring a long-sleeve blouse and ­ankle-length skirt — as a nod to her Finnish heritage.

This year’s Miss Finland, Rosa-Maria Ryyti, strutted across the stage in stiletto heels with straps that wrapped around her bare legs, a gold bikini and leaf-printed cape that looked like leftovers from the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show — an homage to “fall foliage in Scandinavia”.

Miss Spain Carla Barber Garcia sports a half beard and moustache during the 2016 Miss Universe Pageant. Picture: EPA/MIKE NELSON

Miss Spain Carla Barber Garcia sports a half beard and moustache during the 2016 Miss Universe Pageant. Picture: EPA/MIKE NELSONSource:AAP

If there’s a reason to watch the Miss Universe pageant, it’s the national-costume portion, which has devolved from a respectful showcase of cultures to a kitsch extravaganza.

“Contestants are able to wear traditional clothing or create something unique that represents an iconic item in their native home,” says Paula Shugart, president of The Miss Universe Organization. “It can represent their flag, a local flower, reference popular culture or even make a ­political statement.”

Miss Nicaragua Daniela Torres. Picture: Richard D Salyer/Miss Universe

Miss Nicaragua Daniela Torres. Picture: Richard D Salyer/Miss UniverseSource:Supplied

Miss Thailand Aniporn Chalermburanawong wore a Tuk Tuk as her national Costume. Picture: Richard D Salyer/Miss Universe

Miss Thailand Aniporn Chalermburanawong wore a Tuk Tuk as her national Costume. Picture: Richard D Salyer/Miss UniverseSource:Supplied

Miss Venezuela Mariana Jimenez. Picture: Richard D Salyer/Miss Universe

Miss Venezuela Mariana Jimenez. Picture: Richard D Salyer/Miss UniverseSource:Supplied

Contestants once stuck to the attire of their country’s native settlers, but as more Latin American and Asian countries — whose traditional costumes were naturally more glitzy — entered the competition, the outfits became more and more ­outlandish.

In 1992, Miss Paraguay Pamela Zarza won the costume portion by wearing a seven-foot-wide feathered creation that blocked Miss Panama and Miss Peru from sight. And it matters, just as much as looking good in a bikini.

Three of the past four national-costume winners have gone on to place in the top 16, out of 80 total contestants.

Miss Australia Monika Radulovic wore a Dame Edna inspired outfit as her National Costume. Picture: Patrick Prather

Miss Australia Monika Radulovic wore a Dame Edna inspired outfit as her National Costume. Picture: Patrick PratherSource:Supplied

Miss Hungary wore a Rubik’s cube-inspired costume. Picture: EPA/MIKE NELSON

Miss Hungary wore a Rubik’s cube-inspired costume. Picture: EPA/MIKE NELSONSource:AAP

This year’s most notable looks include Miss Hungary dressed as a Rubik’s cube (inventor Erno Rubik hails from the European nation), Miss Thailand’s “tuk tuk” — complete with working headlight — and Miss Australia, who sported a giant headdress made to resemble Dame Edna Everage’s trademark campy glasses.

Miss USA Olivia Jordan enlisted Adam Selman, famed for dressing Rihanna, to create her patriotic ensemble. The result? An ­“eagle” constructed from 5000 laser-cut feathers.

 

[Source:-news.com.au]