|▲ Contestants and audiences give a standing ovation to Nicaraguan Sheynnis Palacios, who was named first place in the 2023 Miss Universe contest (Source: Business Insider)
The 72nd 2023 Miss Universe opened at El Salvador on November 18th with cheers from the audience. This 2023 Miss Universe featured 84 contestants representing their countries. Only unmarried women in their 20s were allowed to participate in the existing Miss Universe. However, in this Miss Universe, as the rules changed, married women, LGBTQ+, and plus- size models were also eligible to participate. As a result, the 2023 Miss Universe has been greeted and praised by people all over the world.
The winner of the 2023 Miss Universe contest was Nicaraguan Sheynnis Palacios. In an interview shortly after the contest, mental health activist and content creator Palacios was asked, "If you could live one year in another woman's shoes, who would you choose and why?" Palacios cited Mary Wollstonecraft, a known proponent of women's rights, for the reason: "She opened the gap and gave an opportunity to women." Despite the unexpected question, Palacios responded with a witty response, expressing her support for women's human rights. In addition, Palacios expressed her honest thoughts regarding mental health issues during the 2023 Miss Universe competition. In the case of Palacios, it is said that she suffered from severe anxiety attacks in the past when she was in college. Palacios, who struggled with mental health issues, started a TV segment called Understand Your Mind for women who were similarly struggling, and touched the psychological comfort of many women.
This Miss Universe was able to have participants from various women's awards due to the changed regulations. In 2018, following Spain's first transgender delegation, Angela Ponce, Machete of Portugal competed in this Miss Universe as transgender. She was cheered by the audience as she was ranked in the top 20. "I'm most proud of the challenges I overcame with fortitude and strength," she said in an interview, "Leading me to develop pillars of humanity and kindness in my life." Another participant, Nepalese representative Garrett, had a hard time with depression caused by PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome). Garrett participated in the competition and expressed support for women's hormone health. Garrett stated, "I am a determined, resilient, and genuine woman who embraces her true essence and nature without fear," and, "My life experiences have molded me into the strong, bold, and courageous woman I am today." Unlike before, married women were given the opportunity to shine on the stage for the 2023 Miss Universe. As a result, Camila Avella, a mother of a child, has made her way to represent Colombia. Camila is currently a journalist. She participated in a beauty contest to win for her country in 2018, but was not selected due to regulations. However, in August of last year, when the organizer of Miss Universe's tournament announced that married women could also compete, she said she decided to try again. In addition, Miss Chile Celeste Viel's mother won the same title 30 years ago. Viel's mother Paula Caballero has also held the Miss Chile title. "I have her with me through all of this process," Viel recently told HOLA. "I'm living the same emotions that she lived, and that's priceless to me. She's accompanied me throughout this whole process and has shared some of what she's experienced." Viel placed in the top 20 at this year's competition. The 2023 Miss Universe, which featured participants who had never been seen before, delivered great courage and confidence to women around the world.
Miss Universe has been criticized all along for commercializing women up until 2022. However, Miss Universe, which has respected diversity since this year, is receiving rave reviews from around the world for giving new opportunities to female participants who have lived in conservative culture. We support Miss Universe's future moves and give infinite praise to the participants who participated in the competition on behalf of their country at Miss Universe 2023.
By Park ChaeHyun, cub-reporter email@example.com
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