The Miss Universe National Costumes



Miss Switzerland Zoé Metthez


Miss Norway Elise Dalby

Why are National Costumes such a big deal at Miss Universe? First and foremost, Miss Universe is a competition of nations and a National Costume is like a badge. It serves as a symbol and something that distinguishes one contestant from the others.


Miss Croatia Ivana Mišura


Miss USA Nia Sanchez 

It all started in 1962 when Miss England Kim Carlton in her iconic Beefeater costume with a sexy twist won the Best in National Costume award. Since then, National Costumes have evolved in so many ways. Today we’ve seen costumes heralding peace treaties, famous buildings and even famous personas. In short, National Costumes are no longer “costumes” in a sense but rather symbolic forms of art that delve into the inner sanctum of cultural heritage from the windmills of the Netherlands to the mythical dragon of China.


Miss Indonesia Elvira Devinamira


 Miss Guyana Niketa Barker

In overall, Colombia is the runaway queen of National Costumes posting six wins. Thailand is not far behind with 5 while Panama, Korea and Brazil each posting 4 wins. Last year’s winner is Miss Nicaragua Nastassja Bolívar who looked truly festive in her pre-Columbian costume.


Miss Ireland Lisa Madden

Year after year, these costumes would either awe the audience or raise the eyebrows of the critics so much so that one British newspaper labeled it as an annual Halloween costume parade. In 1992, Miss Paraguay Pamela Zarza upped the ante by wrapping herself in gargantuan feathery orange plumes to the point that neither Miss Peru nor Miss Miss Panama can pose alongside her. She won the award.

japan Miss Japan Keiko Tsuji


Miss Great Britain Grace Levy

Three winners of the National Costume Award went on to become Miss Universe. In 1998, Porntip Nakhirunkanok’s aubergine traditional Thai costume was a hit among the Taiwanese prevailing over Miss Japan’s kimono and Miss USA’s sexy cowgirl outfit. Ten years later, Wendy Fitzwilliam wowed the Hawaiians with her carnival costume. In 2003, Amelia Vega’s starfish and seahorse ensemble – a costume representing her country’s coral reefs – won the award. If anything, National Costumes are a way for candidates to get noticed. Just ask Kurara Chibana who used a sexy samurai costume that has been the talk of the misso town for days. Did the costume help her in grabbing the first runner-up title? You bet it did!


Miss Malaysia Sabrina Beneett 

Thus, in an annual basis, fans are all gaga about the National Costumes. Not only it is about their country’s pride but also about having their candidate get noticed. Get one national costume right and your candidate will be the talk of the pageantry world for days. Some nations put a lot of effort in putting up a suitable National Costume and they have became expensive as well as expansive.


 Miss Myanmar Sharr Htut Eaindra

This year, from the Tribute to Borobudur of Miss Indonesia to the Shadows of Siam of Miss Thailand to the Celtic warrior costume of Miss Ireland, the Miss Universe National Costume contest will be a feast of colors, of designs and of cultures. Missosology gathered some of the notable costumes that we are bound to see this month. If you want your candidate to be featured in this page, you may email us at


And now the big question is – which costume will eventually be hailed as the best?


Miss Sweden Camilla Hansson


  1. Miss Malaysia amazing this year, from Miss World national costume to Miss Universe Malaysia, all candidate from Malaysia 2014 all best and stunning

  2. Ireland looks so cool! I love the northern European warrior-look. but Miss USA seems primed to take the best national costume win (or at least top 3)

  3. wow, just wow! any of these amazing costumes -indonesia’s, guyana, myanmar, malaysia, japan, ireland or sweden’s- could win! i’m tired of carnival, las vegas, mardi gras inspired feathery costumes!