Miss Spain makes history as first transgender woman to compete in Miss Universe pageant.
Angela Ponce, better known as the reigning Miss Spain, didn’t win the Miss Universe pageant Sunday.
But she didn’t seem to mind.
Simply by representing her country this year, Ponce became the first transgender woman to compete in Miss Universe.
After the preliminary rounds, the 27-year-old model said it was “an honor and pride” to be part of the history of the pageant.
“This is for you, for those who have no visibility, no voice, because we all deserve a world of respect, inclusion and freedom,” Ponce wrote on Instagram on Friday. “And today I am here, proudly representing my nation, all women and human rights.”
Though Miss Universe — and other beauty pageants — have undergone scrutiny (and changes) in recent years to avoid objectifying women, Ponce said she embraced the competition as a chance to fulfill not only her personal ambitions but also to be an ambassador for Spanish culture.
Miss Spain becomes the first transgender to compete in Miss Universe
My National Costume in Miss Universe is a traditional Spanish “bata de cola”. This is an iconic piece in Spain, also known all over the world; it is a precious reference of my country.
To make this wonderful National Costume, @luisfernandezdisenador was inspired by a number of things. The first one being the white villages of Andalusia, since we wanted to honor where I come from (Seville). The white of the villages, of purity… White representing peace, the peace that I bring as my message hand and hand with equality, respect, inclusion and love. A white ‘bata de cola’ that crosses a river of beautiful red carnations made by @hatsbyroiz.
Secondly we had the carnations as inspiration because they are the most typical and recognizable flower of my beautiful country. For that reason I wanted this flower and its color because it represents the love that, as Miss Universe Spain 2018, I’m transmitting to the whole world.
That is the motivate behind a river of red carnations shaped around my head and body, almost as a Spanish flag.
As complements, I carried a fan to expand the scent of our land, a beautiful tortoise-shell & Swarovski clip that crowns my head as Miss Universe Spain 2018.