To be honest, there is slim pickings on the African region simply due to the low number of candidates participating, hence the combining with ladies from the Middle East. Africa has traditionally been a continent that is deemed to be a captured market of the Miss Universe rival, London-based Miss World. It is not devoid, however, of strong Miss Universe candidates this year. In fact, the strong candidates in the region are truly and remarkably strong!
My gut tells me that at least 2-3 girls will be making the first cut this year and perhaps a possible top 5 finish for one or two of the ladies in this list.
Continue reading “Miss Universe 2018: Focus on Africa & the Middle East”
Osmel Sousa is still a relevant name in the pageant industry despite his resignation from the Miss Venezuela organization earlier. He has written a book, putting up a televised reality pageant, and still training ladies for the Miss Universe pageant. No wonder, when he revealed his favorites for the Miss Universe pageant we all listen!
These are the 5 ladies he is rumored to have said to be his favorites!
MEXICO, Andrea Toscano – Osmel is one of Andrea’s trainors so it makes sense that she is on the list.
ECUADOR, Virginia Limongi – not a surprise considering that Virginia is one of the most popular Miss Universe candidates this year.
USA, Sarah Rose Summers – face-wise Sarah is one of the strongest girls factor in her personality and you have a great combo!
SPAIN, Angela Ponce – after a change of heart regarding transgender candidates in Miss Universe, Osmel put Angela in his top 5 list of faves.
PHILIPPINES, Catriona Gray – this is one of the few times that Osmel favours a Filipina candidate.
Shocking that he has not named Venezuela’s Sthefany Gutierrez in the list. He was said to have mentioned that he found her preparations lacking. Colombia’s Valeria Morales wasn’t spared either, he said that “she has no life” in the pageant. Notably obvious is the lack of diversity in his choices with ladies of color not mentioned at all.
Who will be the toughest contenders for the Miss World title? If you ask me now, that would perhaps be Maeva Coucke of France and Vanessa Ponce de Leon of Mexico.
Maeva was the winner of Miss France 2018 and was crowned last December. Due to the Miss France 2019 coinciding with the Miss Universe pageant dates, Maeva is to be sent to MW instead. Miss Mexico 2018 Vanessa Ponce was a favorite in the competition and it is no surprise she’ll be vying for the Miss Mundo title in Sanya. She follows the almost win of Andrea Meza last year.
Here’s the tale of the tape for the two ladies…
Maeva Coucke of France
Age: 24 years old, a 2nd year Law student and dreams to be a corporate lawyer.
Height: 5’9 1/2″
Eye color: Green
Interesting Facts: Maeva is actually blonde but dyes her hair red/brunette. France has not won the Miss World title since the 1950’s so she is hell-bent to do her best to win the turquoise crown. The closest France had to the crown in recent years was with Marine Lorpheline who ended up as 1st Princess to Megan Young in Bali in 2013.
Assessment: with rumors that she was “requested” to join MW instead of MU could be a good sign for France. France is one of the countries that has consistently been doing well in the past 5 years. It would be no surprise if she wins the title in Sanya.
Vanessa Ponce of Mexico
Age: 25 years old, holds a degree in International Commerce & Human Rights
Eye color: Brown
Interesting Facts: she was the winner of the 5th Cycle of Mexico’s Next Top Model in 2014. She volunteers with the Nenemi school which provides intercultural education to children of indigenous tribes.
Assessment: Vanessa is lucky to be her country’s rep as Mexico is on a roll in the MW pageant for the past several years. Their previous placement in Mister World as 2nd runner up shows how fresh they are in the eyes of the org. Mexico has never won the Miss World crown but came close with 3 first runner-up finishes: Dafne Molina Lona in 2005, Perla Beltran in 2009 and Andrea Meza last year. This might be the year where Mexico would finally get its first MW title.
In last year’s pageant, the continental groupings ditched a number of strong candidates from the running. This year, countries from the Caribbean and North America are fielding stronger ladies.
Narrowing it down to just a handful is gonna be difficult for the judges and painful for pageant fans. Nevertheless, we have 5 names that we feel would possibly make it into this year’s semifinals in Bangkok! Continue reading “Miss Universe 2018: Focus on North America and the Caribbean”
As we draw closer to the start of the Miss Universe pageant, we are getting bolder in our leaderboard by shining a spotlight on the ladies who have very strong profiles in the MU website.
Here in today’s list, you don’t get your run-off-the-mill type of beauties but ladies who have strong resumes and bios. These women are empowered, strong, and independent queens. Some of the women have compelling stories from overcoming paralysis, working as household help, shedding being overweight, facing up to bullies, to surviving tuberculosis… their stories are as varied as the countries they come from. We also have on this list career women like journalists, law students, Olympic hopefuls, academic achievers, and breadwinners. This list is not only about beauty but substance…
* Asia & Oceania
1. Vietnam – H’hen Nie
2. India – Nehal Chudasama
3. Sri Lanka – Ornella Gunesekere
* Central & South America
1. El Salvador – Marisela Montecristo
2. Nicaragua – Adriana Paniagua
3. Panama – Rosa Iveth Montezuma
* Africa & the Midde East
1. Kenya – Wabaiya Kariuki
2. Turkey – Tara de Vries
3. Zambia – Melba Shakabozha
1. Spain – Angela Ponce
2. Great Britain – Dee-Ann Kentish-Rogers
3. Malta – Francesca Mifsud
* North America & the Caribbean
1. Canada – Marta Magdalena Stepien
2. USA – Sarah Rose Summers
3. Barbados – Meghan Theobalds
1. South Africa – Tamaryn Green
2. Philippines – Catriona Gray
3. Brazil – Mayra Dias
Do you agree on our choices above? Let us know your thoughts on the comments below…
Venezuela just had it’s 8th Miss International crown and the Philippines had its first MI 1st runner up finish!
Mariem Velazco of Venezuela and Ahtisa Manalo of the Philippines proved that their countries have the strongest sash factor in the Tokyo-based Miss International pageant. Collectively, Venezuela and the Philippines have a share of 24.13% of the total number of wins.
The Miss International 2018 court of winners:
Miss International 2018 – Mariem Velazco, Venezuela
1st runner up – Ahtisa manalo, Philippines
2nd runner up – Reabetswe Sechoaro, South Africa
3rd runner up – Bianca Tirsin, Romania
4th runner up – Anabella Castro, Colombia
Continue reading “Miss International 2018: A Fight between 2 Powerhouses”
In all honesty, this blogger finds this year’s Miss International candidates weaker collectively as compared to last year’s batch. This might explain why we’ve not felt much excitement in the competition. Despite that, there are still several ladies who stands out among the rest.
Meet Sashes&Script’s bets for the Miss International Mikimoto crown on today’s blogpost.
This year’s darkhorses comprise of the ladies that are not quite high in my list but could still pull a surprise placement. A number of girls with strong sash factor falls in this list simply because they are too popular to be ignored. Also in the list are underrated ladies whose sashes aren’t very strong in the pageant world but could still give the rest of the girls a run for the money…. Continue reading “Our Miss International 2018 Faves”