MISS UNIVERSE 2018 Catriona Gray crowns Miss Universe 2019 Zozibini Tunzi, the third woman from South Africa to win the title and the second black woman to wear the crown.
The first was Miss Angola Leila Lopes.t She and the two other finalists, Madison Anderson of Puerto Rico and Sofía Aragón of Mexico, were asked this question: “What is the most important thing we should teach young girls today?”
Miss South Africa 2019 answered: “I think the most important thing we should be teaching young girls today is leadership.
“It’s something that has been lacking young girls and women for a very long time, not because we don’t want to, but because of what society has labeled women to be.
“I think we are the most powerful beings [in] the world, and that we should be given every opportunity.
“And that is what we should be teaching young girls, to take up space. Nothing is important as taking up space in society and submitting yourself.”
Zozibini also nailed the Q&A segment for Top 5, where finalists were asked individual questions.
Pageant host Steve Harvey asked Zozibini: “Are leaders of today doing enough to protect future generations from climate change? If not, what more should they be doing?”
The 26-year-old model answered, “Steve, I think that the future leaders could do a little bit more, but I feel like we as individuals, ourselves, can also play a part in making the climate the way it should be in the future.
“I mean, we have children protesting for climate and I feel like as adults, we should join as well, we should have corporations join as well, and the government should take it seriously.
“I mean, from 6th grade, I’ve been learning that the climate is deteriorating and the planet is dying, and it is up to us to keep our planet safe.”
The pageant’s final tally named Madison Anderson 1st runner-up, Sofía Aragón 2nd runner-up, and Zozibini Tunzi Miss Universe 2019.
Zozibini is the third woman from South Africa to win the title, and the first black woman since Miss Angola Leila Lopes was crowned Miss Universe 2011.
Catriona Gray passed on the Miss Universe crown to Zozibini at the pageant’s grand coronation night at the Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Georgia.
PHILIPPINE BET Gazini Ganados, most stylish among the top 20 finalists of the Miss Universe 2019 pageant held on December 8 (December 9 in Manila), at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Georgia.
Two of Gazini’s most memorable fashion moments happened during the preliminaries of the competition last December 6 (December 7, Philippine time).
Donned in creations by the Cebu based-fashion designer Cary Santiago, Gazini shimmered in gold in the evening gown competition and dazzled in her Philippine eagle-inspired ensemble in the national costume parade.
Oli said one of his personal favorites was Gazini’s arrival outfi t, an orange jumpsuit created by Jun Ador, when she landed in Atlanta.
He said, “It was so beautiful, bold, structured and meaningful! I had to commission the great Dr. Jerome Navarro of Felizo in Bulacan to do the phoenix brooch she used for that, the symbol of the city of Atlanta.”
At the pageant’s photo shoot for Chi, Gazini was draped in a red-and-pink Rajo Laurel dress, another of Oli’s favorites.
He said, “It was so striking they saw Gazini’s modeling prowess!” Gazini stood out in a fuschia pink feathered dress, also designed by Jun Ador, when she watched with the other candidates the circus show Volta by Cirque du Soleil at the Atlantic Station on Wednesday, December 4.
“The cameras gravitated towards her. I think that was a moment!
“Most of the candidates wore long gowns for the show, but she opted to wear this knee-length, beadless dress! That was quite daring” says Oli.
Another of Oli’s favorites, a vintage Cary Santiago dress that Gazini wore at a Miss Universe press junket last December 5 (December 6, in Manila).
He exclaimed, “She brought high fashion couture at 7 in the morning!!
“And it was the first time she sported her signature mid-part straight hair!! She knew when to lay out the winning card.”
Later in the same day, Gazini changed into a pink ruffled dress by Philipp Tampus for the press launch of the newly designed Miss Universe crown, the Power of Unity Crown.
On December 4, Wednesday, Gazini wore a Barong-inspired ensemble, also by Jun Ador, at the preliminary interviews.
In another side event, Gazini wore a trench coat from Kandama, which was fully handwowen by the artisans in the Julongan village of Kiangan, Ifugao.
She draped it over a red-feathered dress, a look styled by by Qurator Studio.
During the pageant’s rehearsals last December 3, Gazini was spotted wearing a jumpsuit by Steph Tan Couture.
For her final look at the Miss Universe pageant, Gazini wore a crystal-embellished jumpsuit from the House of Victoria Emporium.
According to Oli, Gazini brought 11 pieces of luggage to the Miss Universe pageant.
“In our mind, and during the planning process, we were conditioned that the pageant would run for about three weeks; however, it was later announced that it would only be for 10 days!
“To be honest, we had so much clothes! haha! She left Manila with a total of 11 huge luggage.”
Oli said Gazini was firm in her decision to feature creations by Filipino fashion designers and showcase the country’s exquisitely hand-woven fabricss.
The celebrity stylist said, “The direction from Gazini herself was clear, she wanted to show the best of the Filipino to the world!
“We incorporated bits and pieces of local fabrics, mixing them to make it modern and now!”
Oli added that Gazini was very much involved in the planning of her outfits.
He said, “Gazini was 101 percent hands-on! To be honest, she gave us a deadline.
“’By this time all clothes have to be in, multiple fitting sessions, editing, pairing with accessories, etc!’ Or, ‘We have to be shooting them by this date!’
“She worked tirelessly with stylists and designers, myself… plus a huge support system in Cebu…!
“Prior to flying in Atlanta, Gazini herself scheduled dates to shoot her clothes. So we had enough time to look at each one closely. We had time to assess and edit!
“She has a lookbook, it was so organized that each look is laid out with corresponding accessories, hindi sya malilito… so it’s a bit easier already.”
He added that when preparing for an event, Gazini would have her outfit and accessories all laid out the night before.
“She’s that organized!,” Oli said, explaining she wanted the clothes to be the least of her worries in the morning as she got ready for another day in the Miss Universe competition.