Sashes&Scripts Year-End Special: the Alpha Pageant Ranking of 2017

With the Alpha pageants of 2017 being crowned in the same year (remember the MU2016 edition happening in January 2017?), we can finally list down the 2017 rankings within the same year.

Note that the Sashes&Scripts ranking is quite different from the Sash Factor ranking as we list down the overall achievements of the countries just like the Olympic medal tally from the conception of the 4 major pageants. The reason for this is simply because we believe that this is a marathon, not a sprint.
Demi Leigh Nel-Peters’ win in Miss Universe boosted South Africa only to a 15th place overall behind Spain, Germany, Argentina and Finland. Indonesia’s first Miss International win care of Kevin Liliana places her country in the board as a country to look out for…
Now on to the top 10 ranking this year…
10. Colombia – 5 crowns & 26 runner up placements, the 2 runner-up placements didn’t create enough ripple to move it higher this year.
9. Sweden – 6 crowns & 14 runner up placements
8. Brazil – 6 crowns & 37 runner up placements
7. United Kingdom (GB & England) – 7 crowns & 21 runner up placements
6. Australia – 7 crowns & 26 runner up placements
5. Puerto Rico – 9 crowns & 11 runner up placements
4. India – 9 crowns & 15 runner up placements, moves one spot higher to bring down Puerto RIco to the 5th spot with Manushi’s win.

3. Philippines – 14 crowns & 21 runner up placements, Karen Ibasco’s win brings a significant move as it comes closer to the 2nd spot. All it needs is a minimum of 1 major crown next year to overtake the US.
2. USA – 14 crowns & 59 runner up placements
1. Venezuela – 22 crowns & 42 runner up placements, Diana Croce’s 2nd runner up placement in MI just keeps on piling up the lead for this pageant powerhouse.

Kylie & Mariel: The Jump into the Big Screen

It’s currently Metro Manila Film Festival at the theaters and we see two beauty queens jump into the big screens: Miss International Kylie Verzosa and Binibining Pilipinas International Mariel de Leon…

The two beauty queens-turned-actresses can be seen at the Coco Martin starrer Ang Panday. Kylie is now signed under Viva Entertainment, so we should be expecting to see more of her on TV and the big screen. She recently had a hand on reporting as TV Patrol’s Star Patroller. Not to mention as a host of MMFF’s Gabi ng Parangal. Expect big things to come for Mariel as well as she can leverage her singing talent into a career. Both Miss International alums, both facially gorgeous, both making a plash into the showbiz industry. Can’t wait to see how their careers would lift off!

Here is a short video of the outtakes on the shoot…


Sashes&Scripts Year-End Special: Our Most Controversial Posts of 2017

With the blog hitting 1 million hits in 2017, I thought that it would be a great way to take a look back at the most controversial/ audacious post I have written this year.
Sit back as we go through some of the Sashes&Scripts posts that got pageant fans thinking, riled, and excited.

Miss World/ Miss World Philippines BWAP: Beauty Without a Purpose? – this was one of the most audacious post I have written in the blog as I have poked at the heart of the MW & MWP pageants. Upon learning that the BWAP challenge was purposely omitted in MWP after copying all the rest of the MW challenges, it got me thinking if the Beauty with a Purpose portion  was just for show…
* Opportunity Losses of the Miss World Pageant in the Philippines – another post that raised some eyebrows albeit from the international pageant fans. This was exactly what happened in MW later as the pageant was a snooze-fest in terms of its social media presence. And this is going to be an issue if the planned 2019 hosting in the Philippines pushes through…
Male Pageant Winners & the Adult Film Industry Part 1 & Part 2 – not all that glitters is gold and this is evidenced by a number of pageant hopefuls and winners that had a porn past & present. This post has perhaps raised more heads and look at how the male pageant industry has miles to go to get the same reputation as female pageants.

Is Miss Universe IMG|WME Era More Concerned in Stories to Tell? – of the ladies in this list, only 2 didn’t manage to make it into the top 16 of this year’s competition. Here is how the MU is trying to reinvent itself by appealing towards the ‘human interest’ stories of its candidates.
Ms. Earth versus Ms. Grand International: The Rivalry – this is the post that perhaps gathered the most irk from the ME fanatics. Despite the very neutral nature of the post, most ME fanatics did not agree with the comparison from a fellow pageant from Asia.
6 Reasons Why the Best Filipino Pageant Fans Can also be The Worst – arguably, this post that is a look inside the Filipinos’ worst traits (as supposed to being the best pageant fans).
The Most Damaging Scandals & Controversies to Pageant Image Part 1 and Part 2 – this is one of my most controversial posts this year and I would say it probably ranks as my top 1 most audacious post this year. Not even the Alpha pageants Miss Universe, Miss World and Miss Earth is spared in this 2-part write up.


Bb. Pilipinas 2018 Wishlist: Alaiza Malinao

Back when Alaiza Malinao first joined Binibining Pilipinas, I immediately saw a Miss Universe vibe in her. And several years after, I still think that she is Miss Universe material and more!

The 5’9″ model is currently based in the US and was last seen during the Miss Universe pageant in Las Vegas. While we don’t see any indication that she might be joining the BBP18 frenzy, she still is one of the most sought after names to join the biggest national competition. Sun-shiny personality coupled with intense eyes on a modelesque body, Alaiza seems to embody the physical qualities of a possible international winner.
Nowadays, I see Alaiza in a number of other international pageants. Best of which is the Polish-owned Miss Supranational where she can use her seasoned model moves and score the country’s 2nd Supranational title. I also see her possibly in Miss Intercontinental with her dusky enigmatic beauty. Hers could be the first title to be won by a Filipina in the Germany-based pageant. Of course I still believe she can be our next possible Miss Universe Philippines.

All that needs to be seen is whether she will be one of the gorgeous ladies who will be heading to Araneta come application period. Only Alaiza knows the answer to that question as we can only wait in suspense.

Sashes&Scripts Year-End Special: The Philippines’ 2017 Performance

It is said that if we tally all the titles that the Philippines has won this year (from Alpha to Omega pageant) it tallied to a total wins of 50 crowns. Quite a remarkable feat for this pageant obsessed country.

Notable wins among the minor pageants this year is Teresita “Winwyn” Marquez as the first Asian to conquer the Reina Hispanoamericana title. She bested aroung 20+ ladies for the title. KF-trained Sarah Bona also scored a win via the Miss Nature Intercontinental title. Just recently, Jannie Alipoon won the title of Miss Tourism International. The Mutya ng Pilipinas winner scored the country’s 4th crown in the Malaysia-based pageant.

As for the Beta Pageants, the Philippines fared quite well too. It started with a 2nd runner up finish for Elizabeth Clenci in Miss Grand International and was followed up immediately with a 1st runner up finish of Nelda Ibe in Miss Globe. Aces & Queens trained Chanel Olive Thomas managed a top 10 finish in Miss Supranational as well as bagging the Miss Congeniality special award. Her compatriot Katarina Rodriguez’ pageant has been moved to January of 2018 and we can’t wait to see her perform.
The Alpha pageants is a different ballgame altogether. Our Miss International quest for a back to back win ended when Mariel de Leon failed to make it into the semis. Laura Lehmann managed a top 40 finish, the Philippines’ lowest since 2011 but at least was one of the 5 winners of the Beauty with a Purpose challenge. Despite looking spectacular and giving a strong performance at the Miss Universe finals, Rachel Peters didn’t go further than the top 10. Karen Ibasco’s Miss Earth win on the other hand continued  the winning streak of the Philippines in the Alpha pageants. Her win marks 5 consecutive years of winning one or two of the Alpha pageants since 2013.

With the 2017 pageant season about to close and the 2018 national pageant season about to start, we can’t help but get excited for what is next. Binibining Pilipinas 2018 and Miss Philippines Earth 2018 should be getting a head start soon!

Sashes&Scripts Year-End Special: the Prediction Review for 2017

This year, I could say that Sashes&Scripts did quite pretty well in the predictions of winners. While I may not have been able to predict all the winners, majority of the winners were within my winning circle/ top 5.

Miss Universe, Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters
– I got it right this year with my MU pick.  Click here. And if we were to look at Sashes&Scripts’ first leaderboard I have the top 2 perfectly in order with Demi as MU and Laura Gonzalez as the 1st runner up.
Miss International 2017 – I have predicted Curacao’s Chanelle de Lau to which she ended up as 1st runner up. Kevin Liliana of Indonesia was my number 3 pick in the pageant. Click here.
Miss Earth 2017 – just like in MI, my third place pick was the eventual winner of the title. Karen Ibasco defied all odds to become the 4th Filipina to win the ME title. Click here.
Miss World 2017 – I didn’t have a final pick for the Miss World pageant this year with all the overlapping schedules of the pageants in the month of November. I do however had Manushi Chillar in my top 4 for the initial leaderboard.
I had better luck with the Philippine national titleholders in terms of my prediction this year.
Miss Universe Philippines, Rachel Peters – Click here. Early on I already had Rachel within my radar as a possible spoiler for the Miss Universe Philippines crown. I was right.
Bb. Pilipinas International, Mariel de Leon – She was my bet for the Bb. Pilipinas International title even early in the screenings. Click here.
Miss Philippines Earth, Karen Ibasco – After watching her video during the closed-door interviews, I knew then that she was going to be the eventual winner. Click here.
Miss World Philippines 2017 – My top pick Janela Joy Cuaton didn’t make it into the list of winner. Laura Lehman who was my #4 romped away with the title. Click here.

As for other national pageants, I only did for Senorita Colombia and Miss USA. I wasn’t lucky to predict the winners of those two pageants and I hoped I did one for Miss Venezuela 2017. Although I did predict the win of Miss Universe Thailand Maria Poonlertlarp Ehren. In terms of male pageants, I only predicted a couple of wins this year. I didn’t do predictions on several international male pageant like Mister Supranational and Manhunt International this year. The schedules were tight as it overlapped with our coverage in Las Vegas for Miss Universe. Although I did one for Mister Grand International, Mister Universe Model and a couple of national competitions.
Mister Universal Ambassador, Luong Gia Huy – For the second time in a row I predicted the winner of the contest. I had the most accurate prediction as I correctly predicted the placements of the top 2 winners as well as getting the correct placement of the 4th runner up. I got 4 out of the top 5 correctly with three exact placements. Click here.
Mister Global, Pedro Henrique Gicca – This is another almost perfect prediction on my part as I got the top winner plus one of the runner up placements correctly. Out of the top 5, I had 4 of them correctly with the eventual 1st runner up as #6 on my list. Click here.

Once When the Philippines held 3 of the 4 Alpha Pageant Titles

Once in 2016, the Philippines held three of the four Alpha pageant titles even if it was just for a very brief moment.

Today’s post, I wanted to take a look back at that moment in 2016.  From October 27th until the evening of October 29th, the Philippines held the Miss International 2016 title courtesy of Kylie Verzosa with the then reigning Miss Miss Earth Angelia Gabrena Ong(before Katherine Espin of Ecuador was crowned Miss Earth 2016) and Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach. Mireia Lalaguna hasn’t passed her title yet at that time.
Would we ever have this moment again in the future? Or will the Philippines experience winning at least 3 of the four Alpha pageants in the same year?

Bb. Pilipinas 2018 Wishlist: Maureen Montagne

Maureen Montagne is a name that most pageant aficionados are all so familiar with.

When she first competed in Mutya ng Pilipinas several years back, I thought she would be perfect to join Binibining Pilipinas as a follow up. Her joining of Miss USA in 2015 (and her top 15 finish in that pageant) and her 1st runner up finish in Miss World-America just showed how thirsty she is for a crown. Now with murmurs that she is finally joining Bb. Pilipinas 2018 this may be her last chance to secure a national title. After several failed attempts in the US, her joining BBP is something that she should have done a long time ago IMHO. I believed that she would have had a bigger chance of winning in the Philippines than in the US and I am glad she finally gave competing in BBP a chance. I think her beauty will be appreciated more by local tastes than American judges.

The 5’7″ stunner from Chandler, Arizona, took interdisciplinary studies at the Arizona State University. The 24 year old beauty queen is one of the numerous cross-over beauties that is expected to compete in Binibining Pilipinas 2018.

The Miss Universe Prizes for the Winner, Runners Up & Special Awardees

If there is one thing that is admirable in the Miss Universe pageant is that no one goes back home without anything.

The Miss Universe winner gets to go home with a number of prizes in cash and in kind. From a year’s representation as an WME|IMG talent, a year’s stay in a posh condo in NYC, clothes and gifts from sponsors, to a monthly stipend…the MU winner has it made. Just to recap, here are the prizes a MU winner gets to enjoy: Continue reading “The Miss Universe Prizes for the Winner, Runners Up & Special Awardees”

Patterns of the Miss Universe 2014- 2017 Winners

There is are two emerging trends in Miss Universe nowadays: 1st is that the past 4 winners are from four different continents, and 2nd is the long wait of each of the countries in their respective MU victories.

Miss Universe 2014 – Colombia, 56 year gap since its last win, from the Americas
Miss Universe 2015 – Philippines, 42 year gap since its last win, from Asia
Miss Universe 2016 – France, 63 year gap since its last win, from Europe
Miss Universe 2017 – South Africa, 39 year gap since its last win, from Africa
If this is the pattern, would it be safe to say that the next MU winner be coming from the Americas? Or would it skip the Americas and go to the Pacific or even the Caribbean? Could it finally be the time for  Jamaica?Perhaps the crown may find itself on a country with a first time winner? We would have to wait with bated breathe until the next MU pageant comes along…

Colombia: A Renaissance in Miss Universe

Ever since I have covered the Miss Universe pageant live since 2014, one country has always been in the top 3: Colombia.

It started in 2014, when I first covered the Miss Universe pageant in Doral, Miami. In Doral I saw how Paulina Vega worked the press with her bubbly personality and charm. Then it was followed by Ariadna Gutierrez in las Vegas. She may have looked aloof by some Filipino fans but she was quite amiable when I was able to interact with her. Of course we also saw Andrea Tovar in Manila who was quite regal. Then came Laura González who, despite her overly animated facial antics, was quite a looker in person.

I have watched each of them compete live during their respective finals. Luck seems to be on their side nowadays compared to the 90’s when they sent gorgeous ladies that always ended up as bridesmaids: Paola Turbay, Paula Andrea Betancourt & Carolina Gomez (1992-1994). The 2000’s wasn’t short of lovely Colombianas as well with Valerie Tarud, Catalina Acosta and Taliana Vargas making a dent in the competition but not making enough damage to romp with the Miss Universe title.
If they manage to make it to top 3 once again this 2018 when I cover the pageant, I’m starting to think that I might be the lucky charm of Colombia in MU…lols…

PhotoCollage of the Day: the Alpha Queens of 2017

After the dust has settled, four new Alpha winners comprise the class of 2017!

Miss Earth – Karen Ibasco, Philippines
Miss International – Kevin Liliana, Indonesia
Miss Universe – Demi-leigh Nel-Peters, South Africa
Miss World – Manushi Chillar, India

Interesting to note that three out of the four winners are from Asia. It is even more noteworthy that the winners of Miss Earth and Miss International were trained in the same pageant camp in the Philippines! Not to mention that for 5 years in a row the Philippines has won one or two of the Alpha pageants consecutively. This goes to show that the Philippines is indeed a pageant powerhouse country.

Pageant Tourism: Is it Good/ Bad for the Philippines?

In 2017, within just one calendar year, the Philippines has hosted two of the biggest international Alpha pageants in the world: the 65th Miss Universe in January of 2017 and Miss Earth 2017 in November. Plus we also hosted the Miss Asia Pacific International, Mister Grand International, Mister Tourism Universe together with a plethora of other minor international competitions that are too many to even mention. Earlier this January 2018, the first Miss Intercontinental winner was crowned on home-turf, aside from hosting the ME 2018 pageant in November.

This begs the question, is the Philippines getting branded for its pageant tourism approach? Does this give off a negative connotation/ association to the Department of Tourism’s effectiveness as a government agency? Is there a good/ bad trade-off for this branding?
There are pros and cons to this situation. A definite pro is that Pageant Tourism is something that has never been done by any country in the world. It would something that could strategically appeal to the pageant loving communities all over the world. And this could be a initial ‘come hither’ call for tourists that could be a segue to the bigger tourist destinations. This can even be further developed by having the pageants’ finals held in other major cities like Cebu and Davao to push more tourists into these cities and the nearby scenic locales. The DOT can even give its endorsement and get more publicity and sponsorship for these pageants. Or even perhaps allow a incentive or tax break for such prestigious pageants to be held in the Philippines.

A con, however, is the over proliferation of pageants and it would be difficult to pick which ones would be of good reputation. With a lot of fly-by-night pageants that sprung up like mushrooms, there should be a certain criteria that must be met to be included into the roster of DOT-endorsed national/ international pageants. Another con is the fact that tourist spots in the country are spread out and it would be a logistics nightmare to feature them all in the pageant’s program. This doesn’t include the fact that some tourist areas may not have the necessary infrastructures to hold a finals night that could further highlight other Philippine tourist destinations aside from Metro Manila.

How about you? Weigh in the matter on the comments below…

Bb. Pilipinas 2018 Wishlist: Eva Psychee Patalinjug

One of the ladies that I have been waiting and wanting to join Binibining Pilipinas since 2015 is Eva Psychee Patalinjug.

The Mutya ng Pilipinas – Asia Pacific International 2014 winner is a nurse and a part-time model. The 5’7″ beauty also boasts of a meaty resume, aside from her nursing diploma she also serve as a Sangguniang Kabataan Chair. Eva, who was also a 1st runner up in Miss Cebu 2014, is around 24-25 years old and is at the right age to give BBP a shot. If she waits until she is 26 years old, she may have limited options as to which international competitions she might be eligible under BBP.
IMHO, she is ripe to bring home one of the top titles in Binibining Pilipinas. Her porcelain doll beauty is going to be a hit for Miss International and Miss Intercontinental, but her wit and magnetism would do well in Miss Universe and Miss Grand International. I am confident that she is a major contender for BBP2018 and could easily clinch any of the titles up for grabs.

What say you dear Sashistas? Does she get your nod for Binibining Pilipinas 2018?