Philippines’ Gazini Ganados wins Miss Universe 2019 Best National Costume Award, first after 25 years

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Gazini Ganados National Costume award
Miss Universe confirmed that Miss Philippines actually won the Best in National Costume. Credits to Miss Universe.

It’s official. Miss Philippines Gazini Ganados actually bagged the Best in National Costume Award in the recently-concluded Miss Universe pageant in Atlanta, Georgia.

Miss Universe official social media announced the win for the Philippines after the pageant ended on December 8 (December 9 PHL Time), saying, “@IAmSteveHarvey had it right: Miss Universe Philippines Gazini Ganados is the winner of the #MissUniverse2019 National Costume competition! Congratulations, Gazini”.

Pageant host Steve Harvey declared Ganados as the winner of the national costume competition live onscreen right after the announcement of the Top 10 finalists. Ganados’ photo wearing the winning national costume was also flashed on the TV screen. Ganados had just gotten off stage as one of the top 20 candidates.

https://twitter.com/MissUniverse/status/1203912109861543936

However, the confusion started when the camera zoomed out to show Miss Malaysia Sheets Sekhon – dressed in her Peranakan cuisine-inspired costume- was right there standing next to Harvey. The Malaysian candidate also corrected the host saying that it was Miss Malaysia, not the Philippines, who won the said competition.

Steve Harvey quickly replied saying: “Well, let me explain something to you. I just read that in a teleprompter.”

“Y’all gotta quit doing this to me,” the 62-year old TV host said, addressing the production team.

“I can read,” he said. “Now they’re trying to fix it. See? This is what they did to me back in 2015, played me short like that.”

Harvey referred to the Miss Universe fiasco in the 2015 edition of the pageant when he wrongly announced Ariadna Gutierrez of Colombia instead of the Philippines’ Pia Wurtzbach as the Miss Universe winner.

Harvey announced the correction saying Miss Colombia, who was already wearing the Miss Universe crown, was, in fact, the first runner-up and that Miss Philippines was the actual Miss Universe.

Wurtzbach’s win ended the country’s 42-year wait for the third Filipina to bring home the Miss Universe crown after Margarita Moran won the title in 1973 and Gloria Diaz who celebrates this year the golden anniversary of her win in 1969.

That incident earned various reactions from pageant fans throughout the world and has since become a colorful mark on the Miss Universe records.

When a tense Harvey and Wurtzbach met again on the Miss Universe stage in front of the Manila crowd, as the 3rd Filipina Miss Universe crowned the 2016 Miss Universe, they joked about the incident.

A representative from the pageant also explained, as reported in New York Post, that Steve Harvey made no mistake in the announcement. It was Miss Malaysia who was not informed that there would be an announcement of the actual winner before she would be introduced.

Gazini Ganados’ silver costume is inspired by the endangered Philippine eagle and was created by Cebu-based master couture Cary Santiago.

Ganados’ success in winning the national costume in Miss Universe followed the same success the Philippines had when Charlene Gonzales bagged the award in 1994, 25 years ago. She then wore a Bagobo-Hiligaynon-inspired attire designed by Pitoy Moreno.

Gazini’s Best National Costume win completed the 10-year-straight milestone for the Philippines at Miss Universe, with the country’s candidates landing in the semi-finals, winning runner-up titles, and eventually securing wins by Pia Wurtzbach in 2015 and in 2018 by Catriona Gray, the fourth Filipina Miss Universe.

SEND congratulations in the comments below to Miss Philippines Gazini Ganados and her design team for winning the 2019 Miss Universe Best in National Costume!

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Lorenzo Cruz
Lorenzo Cruz believes that the power of beauty could help the Philippines to rise to the top. He is a travel and fashion enthusiast who loves to explore Filipino culture.