With their special brand of high-octane glamour, pageant queens sashayed down the Vogue black carpet in style, whilst taking the evening’s theme of regenerative fashion to heart.
The realms of Filipino fashion design and pageantry have always strutted hand in hand, with the former sharing their immense creative talents and the latter becoming impeccable muses as they represent the country in international competitions. This synergy that often results in megawatt glamour was likewise witnessed at the Vogue Philippines Anniversary Gala, where a gorgeous coterie of titleholders came to attend the star-studded soiree.
Another queen that walked the event’s black carpet was actress and Miss World 2013 Megan Young who wore a gown by Russel May Cordero. According to the designer, when he had first met Young, he felt that he really wanted to create something with a floral accent, but decided to embellish it with Swarovski crystals to suit the beauty queen’s confident and modern aesthetic. Young’s effortless look was finished off with a sleek high pony, and fresh-faced glowy makeup.
Looking ravishing in a tea-length ballgown by Puey Quiñones was Miss Universe Philippines 2022 Celeste Cortesi, who exemplified a contemporary take on fifties-inspired femininity. She shares with Vogue Philippines that along with her glam team, she wanted to change up her look for this year’s event. “This time we wanted to do something really fun and elegant, because last year I was really sexy for Vogue,” Cortesi declares.
Accentuating her bouncy locks was a hair bow made from recycled fabric. “This just comes from an old outfit that I have. I wanted to do a bow so I asked my stylist [to] get an outfit that I wore before,” she shares, remarking how they got lucky by finding fabric that matched her gown, which also has a small bow at the waist. The statuesque beauty adds a bit of shine to her ensemble with silver pumps, diamond jewelry, and a sparkly minaudiere.
Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach, who arrived on the arm of her dapper husband Jeremy Jauncey, turned heads in a slinky evening gown by Mark Bumgarner, and stilettos from YSL. A statement necklace from Bulgari draped down her decolletage, complementing her outfit’s deep V, showcasing Belo Beauty-perfect skin.
For this piece, Bumgarner had reworked a piece from his archive by modifying the neckline to further suit Wurtzbach’s style, whilst still exuding a timeless appeal. He then embellished it with crystals, and added an inner corset, which according to stylist Perry Tabora, were materials likewise sourced from the designer’s past collections.
Wurtzbach later changed into a Louis Vuitton look pulled together with gold accessories.
Channeling old Hollywood glamour, actress and Miss International 2016 Kylie Verzosa sashayed in a sophisticated gown by Mark Bumgarner that features a draped bodice and a mermaid skirt. Stylist Perry Tabora conveys that the gown was an existing piece the beauty queen had intended to wear to Cannes, but did not have the opportunity to do so. In collaboration with her glam team, Bumgarner redesigned the dress into something more classic for the Vogue Philippines gala.
Reigning Miss Universe Philippines candidate Michelle Dee, who is set to represent the country later this year, arrived at the gala in a sleek, tailored outfit by Chris Nick. The model and beauty queen wore a long tuxedo coat with bows at the hem of her sleeve, and paired it with a micro mini skirt. According to her glam team, the look “merged just the right amount of masculine and feminine elements with sensuality and elegance,” and suited Dee’s androgynous style ensuring that they can be worn over and over again. To complete her edgy ensemble she dons Balenciaga pumps, and Tiffany & Co. jewelry.
Looking ethereal in a goddess-like gown is Miss Universe Philippines 2020 and actress Rabiya Mateo, in a chiffon creation from the archive of Anthony Ramirez. The designer had refreshed the piece to better complement the beauty queen’s style, which is one that marries timelessness with a touch of sexiness. To give her outfit a contemporary edge, Mateo goes for a clean beauty look, replete with super straight waist-length hair, dramatic lined eyes and a reddish lip.
In a figure-hugging black velvet gown, accented with an oversized white bow, Pauline Amelinckx was a showstopper at the gala. The Miss Supranational 2023 first runner-up looked ravishing in a gown by Mikee Andrei, a classic updo, and bright crimson lips.
According to Andrei, the beauty queen’s dress was a piece they had created a long time ago for one of her pre-pageant activities, but that she did not have a chance to wear. The bodice was taken from a swimsuit that Amelinckx had already modeled at a photo shoot, which they took apart to combine with a mermaid skirt. The bow, which gives the look a dramatic finishing touch is also removable, allowing the piece to be worn in two ways.