All hail the queens of the carnival!
Bringing the fun and festivity in the fashion and Filipino artistry, the beauty queens of Miss Universe Philippines 2021 stunned in their national costumes. It’s one of the most-anticipated segments in the pageant world and none of them came to disappoint. Did you know that P-Pop group BGYO was also behind the soundtrack during the national costume segment? Read on below for our favorite national costumes at the Miss Universe Philippines 2021 and the meaning behind them from Jan Louise Abejero’s mais-inspired gown to Steffi Aberasturi’s rattan ensemble.
MAUREEN WROBLEWITZ’S BANGUS NATIONAL COSTUME
Maureen reps Pangasinan City in a crystal-encrusted gown by Louis Pangilinan. On her Instagram post she details, “the silver beads, crystals, and sequins were hand-embellished as a representation of the rich and fine salt beds of the Province where it was derived and owed—’panag asinan’—where salt is made.”
KISSES DELAVIN’S LAPAY-INSPIRED GOWN
Kirsten Danielle Delavin wearing a Polly Lagyap creation featuring the Lapay, Masbate’s most symbolic and culturally distinct bird.— Pirena 🔥 (@zekshielove) September 23, 2021
🔗 https://t.co/yXlHzwYqz0#Kisses4Universe #KissesDelavin#MissUniversePhilippines2021 pic.twitter.com/5yKULCNU3n
Kisses Delavin represents Masbate through its symbolic bird—the Lapay in a gown made by Polly Lagyap.
JASMINE UMALI’S EGYPTIAN-THEMED GOWN
According to Jasmine Umali’s Instagram post, her national costume created by June Samson Pugat was inspired by the “Egyptian-themed enthronement” of Manileña, Carmen Papa y Arevalo, who was crowned Manila Carnival Queen in 1925.
AYN BERNOS’ FULLY-BEADED CARNIVAL QUEEN LOOK
Ayn Bernos’ intricately-designed gown by Edwin Uy initially featured the Maria Clara gown’s signature sleeves. On her Instagram post, Ayn says, “this piece is a tribute to Carnival Queens, inspired by the diversity of Filipino design and culture.”
BEATRICE LUIGI GOMEZ’S BAKUNAWA GOWN
Cebu City’s Beatrice Luigi Gomez is the 𝘽𝘼𝙆𝙐𝙉𝘼𝙒𝘼, the moon eater. 🌙— Sugbo.ph (@SugboPH) September 23, 2021
Bea’s National Costume is designed by fashion designer, Axel Que. What’s the inspiration behind the design? Read the story here: https://t.co/MEsHuXKqYh
📸Photos and story from Edward James Castro pic.twitter.com/xuMHA9eTNC
Beatrice Luigi Gomez brings all the glamour in a terno pantsuit by Axel Que, inspired by the Bakunawa, the serpent-like dragon in Philippine mythology that was believed to devour moons. Pants on the national costume stage? Yes, please!
MIRJAN HIPOLITO’S TRIBUTE TO HER LOLA
A tribute to her lola who once joined pageants like herself, Mirjan Hipolito defines regal Filipina beauty in a creation by Kapampangan doll couturier Cholo Ayuyao. “I was once the girl in the corner, secretly admiring the beauty of my lola, preserved in that black and white frame,” shares Mirjan.
KRIZZALEEN VALENCIA’S COLORFUL REPRESENTATION OF MUSLIM CULTURE
Rich in history, Krizzaleen Mae Valencia’s intricate ensemble created by Silverio Anglacer was to honor the colorful tradition of Muslim culture.
CHRISTELLE ABELLO’S GOWN MADE OF PIÑA
Representing Aklan, Christelle Abello is a vision in a Ryan Salazar Lopez gown. It was made of the piña fiber of Aklan with colorful appliques that depicted the vibrancy of her province.
STEFFI ABERASTURI’S WOVEN STO.NINO GOWN
Celebrating Cebu’s traditional livelihood rattan weaving, Steffi Aberasturi’s national costume honors the city’s craftsmanship. The intricately-woven gown celebrates the 500 years of Christianity in the Philippines by “honoring the colors of one of the most well-known religious relics of the Philippines—The Señyor Sto Niño.”
INGRID SANTAMARIA’S ODE TO HER GRANDMOTHER’S GOWN AS THE 1937 MANILA CARNIVAL QUEEN
In a shimmering and cascading creation by Rajo Laurel, Ingrid Santamaria pays homage to her grandmother Carmen Arnaiz Zaldarriaga’s winning gown as the Manila Carnival Queen in 1937.
KATRINA DIMARANAN’S AIRBRUSHED ART DECO GOWN
Nothing compares to a mother’s love and Katrina Dimaranan knows that full well. “The ombré color from lavender to white is an homage to my Lola Betty and my Mom’s favorite color,” says the Taguig City representative in an art deco detailed gown by Val Taguba.
ISABELLE DE LOS SANTOS’ SAMPAGUITA-INSPIRED NATIONAL COSTUME
More than her city, Isabelle represents the Philippines’ national flower—the sampaguita. It features a modern barong-style ensemble adorned with a huge feathered fan by Oz Go.
JANE NICOLE MINANO’S HOMAGE TO ROMBLON’S CARNIVAL QUEEN
Jane Nicole Minano’s heavily-beaded traje de mestiza by Erjohn Dela Serna was an homage to Isabel Bowers—Romblon’s first and only Carnival Queen. The color of the beadwork, which took two weeks to be completed, was inspired by marbles, a product that the city is known for.
KHESHAPORNAM RAMACHANDRAN’S HEADLINE-MAKING TURN
Representing the city of Iloilo, Kheshapornam Ramachandran makes a powerful statement in her terno made by Alfie Jolo Desamparado. The print on the gown itself will definitely make you look twice as it had the headlines of Ilonggo orator and writer Graciano Lopez Jaena, who founded La Solidaridad. “The embellishments are handcrafted to depict the pillars of Molo Church and handbeaded with acrylic stones,” shares Khesha on her Instagram account. As for the trail? They’re laser-printed faces of some of the most empowered women of Iloilo: Pura Kalaw, Teresa Magbanua, Patrocino Gamboa, Miriam Defensor Santiago, and Josette Biyo.
JAN LOUISE ABEJERO’S CORN-INSPIRED NATIONAL COSTUME
Probably the only Miss Universe Philippines 2021 candidate who broke the rules and wore her hair down, Isabela representative Jan Louise Abejero was a standout in this yellow terno inspired by the mais. As she honored the top corn-producing province, this Roel Rosal look was a win. “To me, corn is a symbol of life, abundance, and new beginnings.”
You can watch Miss Universe Philippines 2021’s National Costume segment below: