The Aurora Pijuan Phenomenon in Binibining Pilipinas

There is an urban legend in the Binibining Pilipinas pageant called the #AuroraPijuanPhenomenon. This phenomenon is said to happen whenever a strong Bb. Pilipinas Universe favorite is relegated to the Bb. Pilipinas International title whenever the reigning Miss Universe is from the Philippines.

Back in 1970, this thing happened when a strong candidate was placed in the Bb. Pilipinas International title by the name of Aurora McKenney Pijuan. She was poised to be reigning Miss Universe Gloria Diaz’ successor for the Binibining Pilipinas Universe crown but was relegated instead to the Tokyo-based pageant. Urban legend has it that she was placed specifically to that position as no Miss Universe back to back winner has been crowned then (which happened only later in 2008 & 2009).

The same thing happened in 2016 when fan-favorite for the Miss Universe Philippines, Kylie Verzosa, found herself winning the Binibining Pilipinas International title, which surprised lot of her fans. Little did we know back then that the powers at be at Bb Pilipinas Org were being strategic in her placement. Lo and behold, she has become the Philippines’ 6th Miss International winner.

This wasn’t the case though in 1974, when then Bb. Pilipinas International Erlynn Bernardez failed to make the first cut in the Tokyo-based competition. It was Bb. Pilipinas Universe 1974 Guadalupe Sanchez that made past the first cut in Miss Universe. The then 17 year old Guada made top 12. Could it be that the Aurora Pijuan Phenomenon skipped a year? Will the Aurora Pijuan phenomenon happen again in the future? We are curious to see this phenomenon at work as the Philippines holds the 2018 Miss Universe crown courtesy of Catriona Gray. We definitely are excited to see whether or not the Binibining Pilipinas International 2019 winner will become the next Miss International later this November…


Madam Stella Marquez-Araneta’s International Crowns of the Decade

For the past 9 years, the Binibining Pilipinas pageant has earned several international titles and numerous other runner-up placements thru the dedication of Binibining Pilipinas Charities, Inc.’s Chairperson Stella Marquez Araneta. The BPCI Matriarch has managed to score seven international crowns in this decade alone. With only one year more ’til the 2010s close, could she produce another international winner?

Mutya Johanna Datul, Miss Supranational 2013 – she was the first of two international titles to be won that year. The 5’8 stunner from the province of Isabela had the most polished and strong ramp skills in her batch. It was a perfect match to have seen her sent to the pageant that perfectly matches her strength. Mutya was in her best element during the finals in the Poland-based pageant – the runway. It was also with her win that the Miss Supranational pageant became a budding pageant to keep tabs on.
Bea Rose Santiago, Miss International 2013 – this lady was a personal favorite from the get go and was a personal favorite for the Bb Pilipinas International title with her semblance with Aurora Pijuan. Rumor has it that it was Bea who received top scores at the nationals. Smart, articulate, tall at 5’9″, gorgeous and blessed with long limbs, Bea was an instant hit in Japan. No surprises seeing her taking home the Mikimoto crown that year.
Ann Colis, Miss Globe 2015 – IMHO, this girl would have been better sent to a more ‘substantial’ pageant. Personally, it was like sending a ‘big fish in a small pond’ scenario. We all knew she was gonna win the Canadian-based pageant, in fact some pageant fans felt that she was unjustly underutilized as she could make a bigger splash in bigger pageants. Nevertheless, Ann Colis shines as one of BPCI’s crown jewels of this decade.

Pia Wurtzbach, Miss Universe 2015 – three times the charm. She was the perfect embodiment of an unwavering spirit and determination. Her victory after decades long drought brought back the fanaticism towards the Miss Universe pageant…
Kylie Verzosa, Miss International 2016 – a favorite even at the nationals, Kylie was the media and organization darling in Tokyo… even then-reigning Miss International Edymar Martínez loved her! Kylie’s win as the 6th Filipina MI winner further cemented the country’s status as a powerhouse in the pageant. The only country to have more Mikimoto crowns than the Philippines is Venezuela.
Catriona Gray, Miss Universe 2018 – she came to Bangkok to be crowned, or that is what this blogger feels. Catriona was a brand of her own, and that was the one thing that will only bring the Miss Universe pageant into greater heights now that she has won. Rumors have it that the owners of the MGI and MS pageants wanted her for their pageant. Had SMA given in to them, it would have been a travesty and the Philippines wouldn’t have its 4th MU title.
Karen Gallman – her win as the first Filipina Miss Intercontinental was the icing on the cake for the BBP2018 batch. Her win further cements the Philippines as a powerhouse in pageants.
It is thru SMA’s ability to match the right lady for the international pageant she is competing that we owe much to her. It is in that same vein that Sashes&Scripts is hoping to have all these 6 ladies attend the Bb Pilipinas 2018 coronation night. Having all winners within the decade present during the finals would be remarkable, it would be a star-studded affair for the penultimate night of Binibining Pilipinas 2019.

* NOTE: this is a republished post that we updated for accuracy and relevancy…

The Philippines’ Winning Streak Continues!

2013 to 2018 – Six continuous years of the Philippines winning one Alpha pageant crown after another!
This decade has to be the “winning-est” decade for the country in pageantry. In such a short amount of time the country has amassed 8 major titles from Miss Earth, Miss World, Miss International and Miss Universe! Not even pageant powerhouse Venezuela has achieved such successive wins.

The recent Miss Universe win of Catriona Gray cements the country as the premier pageant powerhouse not only in Asia but in the world. With Catriona’s  4th Miss Universe win, the Philippines has moved to the 2nd with the United States falling behind to number 3. The US has a lead however on the number of runner up placements with 50+ runner up positions on all four Alpha pageants! Catriona’s win has also placed the Philippines among the top 4 countries with the most Miss Universe winners after USA, Venezuela and Puerto Rico.
2013 – Miss International, Bea Rose Santiago
– Miss World, Megan Young
2014 – Miss Earth, Jamie Herrell
2015 – Miss Earth, Angelia Gabrena Ong
– Miss Universe, Pia Wurztbach
2016 – Miss International, Kylie Verzosa
2017 – Miss Earth, Karen Ibasco
2018 – Catriona Elisa Gray

The Philippines would need 9 more crowns to be number 1. It would still be a bit far to narrow the gap with Venezuela’s impressive 23 Alpha pageant titles. But hope is something we can hold on to for that day to come…

ABS-CBN Ball 2018: Best Dressed Beauty Queens

Everything sparkled during the ABS-CBN Ball last Saturday, September 29th. But those that truly shone were the beauty queens in attendance!
Sashes&Scripts ranked the top 5 best dressed beauty queens that night… All 5 girls showed major leg action with slits that showed off their lovely gams in shiny sparkling outfits that stole the red carpet.

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Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach looked every inch a #BondGirl in her outfit last night! 👸👸👸 Harking back to classic James Bond films like Gold Finger and Octopussy, her bronzed look with her metallic chainmail gown looked very 'Gianni Versace' of the hedonistic 80's with makeup reminiscent of 70's supermodel Veruska… Wpuld have loved her look much better if she had her hair in a "taras bulba" updo, that would made her look very 60's glamour girl meets spy goddess… Pia's overall look was very 'glossy magazine cover' worthy. Comment or tap like if you agree 😊 . . . #SashesandScripts #UltimatePageantBlog #PageantBlogger #pageant #missUniverse2015 #MissUniverse #PiaWurtzbach

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5.  Pia Wurtzbach – Pia took a major fashion risk with her outfit that night. There was a split whether you like it or not. I love the golden goddess look that was part Versace, part Bond Girl (Golden Finger)… It wasn’t an easy look to pull off. I could only imagine that it would have looked great in person and that photos don’t do justice to the whole ensemble. I would have only changed the hair to a Taras Bulba to make it more sleek.

4. Ariella Arida – she showed major skin that night while maintaining a very polished and dignified overall look. Plunging neckline with a revealing slit and sides, a look that she pulled off effortlessly. She looked every inch a goddess in her peach Hannah Kong gown with an impeccable Grecian updo. The only thing I’d change would be the earring and used a statement shoulder sweeper earring to add more pizzazz to the over all outfit.

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Just going to lay here #abscbnball2018

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3. Kylie Verzosa – she looked gorgeous in white and I have to say that the white and the bronzed effect on her skin was a perfect combination. Kylie was throwing major curves with her Francis Libiran gown. The gown itself reminded me of Denise Quinones in 2001. Kylie pulled off her ensemble magnificently!

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Imagining Catriona Gray on the MU stage be like… Comment/ Like if you agree that our Philippine bet is Miss Universe ready! … PS, love her styling by @ton_lao . She was styled on point from hair down to the toes. Love the eye makeup and the soft lips, it reminds us of Pia Wurtzbach's MU2015 finals look. It's very MU competition apt! @memayfrancisco did a great job making Cat look fierce and soft both at the same time. I hope Cat can replicate the eye make up for MU. Mamang @hairbybrentsales did an amazing job too. I always thought that Cat looks best from her left side, so putting her hair on her right side was a stroke of genius. Let's not forget the @maktumang gown which made everyone think of Cat's BBP gown. I am biased to think that gold is still her best color… Kudos to team Catriona @mimsqiu @harleybarleyyy @jololuarca @bragaisjojo It seems like last night was a dry run for something we all should be expecting for MU this year. We all can't wait for more! … Photo credits to @miss_universe_philippines 📷📷📷 . . . #SashesandScripts #UltimatePageantBlog #PageantBlogger #BbPilipinas #MissUniverse2018 #MissUniversePhilippines #MissUniverse #CatrionaGray #Philippines #catrionians

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2. Catriona Gray – loved everything about this outfit. From the hair down to the color of her strappy sandals. But I would really give it to Memay Francisco’s makeup that made Catriona’s face luminous that night. Gold is still Catriona’s best color IMHO and the sparkling Mak Tumang gown amplified the sensual aspect of the outfit.

1. Nicole Cordoves –  the golden girl in my list. Love how everything in her outfit was on point. She had on a very understated face and a gold gown cut simply but brought major bling! If you look at her earrings and ring (courtesy of Riqueza Jewellery), it was very Hollywood glam. Then what brought her outfit all together was her nails by Mi & Me Luxury Nails. She was channeling Miss Grand International colors with the emerald and gold colors! Even her eye shadow had gold/ emerald in it (makeup by Anton Patdu). Now that’s what you call well planned.

Comments or thoughts on the list? Let us know on the comments down below!

The International Titleholders of Binibining Pilipinas

In celebration of the 55th year f the Binibining Pilipinas pageant, I thought that it would be interesting to bring together all of the Bb. Pilipinas titleholders who went on to win international titles. Wouldn’t it be a marvelous reunion of sorts for past and present international winners if they were to be gathered into one stage?

So far, under the management of BPCI, a total of 17 international titles have been collected. Here is a list of the crowns that the BPCI has accumulated throughout the years…
Joanne Santos, Miss Tourism International 1997 (Macau version) – after placing 16th in Miss Universe 1995, Joanne was appointed to compete in the Miss Tourism International pageant based in Macau.
Michelle Reyes, Miss Tourism International 2001 (Turkish version) and Miss Tourism World 2002 – she was Bb. Pilipinas 1st runner up in 2001 and is the only BBP winner to win 2 consecutive international titles.
* Maricar Balagtas, Miss Globe International 2001 – ironically, the runners up of Bb. Pilipinas 2001 were the ones that brought home international crowns. Later in 2004 Maricar would then become Bb. Pilipinas Universe.

Kristine Reyes Alzar, Miss Tourism International 2002 – she was crowned Bb. Pilipinas International that same year but she got to compete in two international contests.
Noela Mae Evangelista, Queen of Tourism International 2003 – Noella was 2nd runner up in 2003 but was selected to compete in Mexico City. She was the last Binibini to wear the famous ‘Miriam Quiambao gown’.
* Mutya Johanna Datul, Miss Supranational 2013 – the first to be officially crown Bb. Pilipinas Supranational.
* Ann Lorraine Colis, Miss Globe 2015 – the first to be crowned Bb. Pilipinas Globe.

* Gloria Diaz, Miss Universe 1969
Aurora Pijuan, Miss International 1970
* Margarita Moran, Miss Universe 1973
* Melanie Marquez, Miss International 1979
* Precious Lara Quigaman, Miss International 2005
* Bea Rose Santiago, Miss International 2013
* Pia Wurtzbach, Miss Universe 2015
* Kylie Verzosa, Miss International 2016
* Catriona Gray, Miss Universe 2018

Without a doubt, this list is expected to grow more in the coming years. While this is nothing compared to the impressive list won by Miss Venezuela’s Osmel Sousa, it does give us a glimpse of how far BPCI has come through the years. With the Philippines currently at a pageant Renaissance, I am expecting at least a couple more titles would be added to the list before the turn of the decade…

Filipina Miss International Winners

If there was another title that I would love to have again, it would be the Miss International title. The reason for this is simply because I wanted the Philippines to equalize the lead with Venezuela with the most number of wins in the Japan-based pageant

So far we have 6 titles under our belt. This is the most number of wins for any Asian country. (Click here to see which are the countries with the most number of wins)
At the Miss International pageant, the country has 31 placements with 6 winners (1964 • 1970 • 1979 • 2005 • 2013 • 2016) and 3 runner up finishes.
Gemma Teresa Guerrero Cruz – the first Filipina and Asian winner of the Miss international title. Her lineage was that of heroes and scholars as her paternal great-grandmother was Doña Maria Mercado, the sister of the Philippines’ national hero, José Rizal. Her mother is writer and journalist Carmen Guerrero Nakpil. She donated the US$10,000 prize money she won as Miss International to Manila Boys Town and Girls Home, a home for indigent and out of school youth in 1964.
Aurora McKenney Pijuan – Her victory in 1970 made the Philippines as the first country to win the title twice. It was said that since no two countries could win the Miss Universe title in two successive years, she was strategically placed in Miss International to win us our first MI crown under the BPCI management.
Melanie Marquez – one of the tallest Binibining Pilipinas winners in its history, standing at 5’11” tall. She was the youngest winner of Miss International in history at the age of 15 when she competed in the Miss International 1979. In 1985 Melanie became the Face of the 80s winner in New York, USA. And in 1986, was the First Runner-up in the Supermodel competition.

Precious Lara Quigaman – is the fourth Filipino to have won the crown in 2005. Before moving to Bahrain, she studied for a semester at the University of Santo Tomas in Manila. In England, she attended South Gloucestershire and Stroud College, originally called Filton College where she studied Media Production and Communication.
Bea Rose Santiago – the 5’9″ beauty moved to Canada when she was only 15 years old, where she studied Communications at York University and became a model under Elite Model Management. She bested 66 other candidates for the MI crown.
Kylie Verzosa – her reign has been very productive and is perhaps one of the most traveled Miss International winners in recent years. Kylie is an advocate of mental health, depression, and suicide awareness. And she also volunteered for the Natasha Goulbourn Foundation, which aims to educate people about depression and suicide. She later on created Mental Health Matters, an online support group which aims to give emotional support to people who are experiencing depression, anxiety disorder, and other forms of mental illnesses.

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…


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?

The Winning Streak for the Philippines Continues!

After the dust has settled and all the major pageants has finished, we can now say that the Philippines continues its winning streak in the 4 most relevant pageants in the world. Since 2013, the Philippines has been winning one crown after another in Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss International and Miss Earth (arranged according to date of establishment).

Every year since 2013, we have been winning one title after another.
2013 – Miss International Bea Rose Santiago & Miss World Megan Young
2014 – Miss Earth Jamie Herrell
2015 – Miss Universe Pia Wurtzbach & Miss Earth Angelia Gabrena Ong
2016 – Miss International Kylie Verzosa
2017 – Miss Earth Karen Ibasco

The latest addition to the list is Miss Earth Karen Ibasco who allowed the Philippines its 7th Alpha pageant win in 5 consecutive years. The medical physicist wowed the judges with her gift of gab and earning the 4th Miss Earth title for the country. She brought in a sandwich victory after Angelia Ong’s back-to-back win with Jamie Herrell.
With 7 wins in 5 years, will we be seeing another Filipina winner come 2018?

Kylie Verzosa: A Life After Miss International

Outgoing Miss International Kylie Verzosa has something to be proud of after completing her reign. The Filipina beauty has made the most out of her reign travelling to almost 10 countries and promoting her mental health advocacy.

But wait, there is more. Kylie has now begun plans as an entrepreneur to focus on after her reign. Below is a snippet of her post on Facebook several days ago:
Some people have asked me what my plans are after my reign as Miss International. I have a long list and I am conquering each item one step at a time! Other than traveling, modeling and my product endorsements, I will continue to work on establishing my Mental Health Foundation that not only reaches out to those in the Philippines but also to people who need help worldwide.
I am also proud to inform you that I have started my gig as an entrepreneur.
I started with my partners and we will have our first conference on 17 – 18 November at Basement 1, Bellesalle, Roppongi.
We will be with our real estate developers from the Philippines, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia,Cambodia and Laos. Our main goal is to connect the real estate industry between Japan and the rest of Asia.” 
Here’s to wishing Kylie success in her new venture and more wonderful things in her future!