Yas, Queens: Top Miss Universe Philippines Candidates You Need To Know

Then and now, long have they reigned.
PHOTO: Judy Eddy/WENN.com

Countries have now crowned their respective queens in preparation for the Miss Universe 2018 competition in Bangkok, Thailand on December 17. There are beauty pageant aficionados who are naming their bets as early as now, even though the event is still a few months away.

We, in turn, take a look back at some of our Miss Universe Philippines queens who have made their mark on the pageant circuit and are still slaying it after they have relinquished their crown. Here, we give a throwback to their winning moments and give updates on where they currently hold court.

Gloria Diaz, 1969

It was a proud and iconic moment when the long-lashed Gloria Diaz won the crown for the Philippines for the first time. It was her charm and wit, not to mention her standout morena beauty that captivated the judges and audiences during her turn at the 1969 Miss Universe pageant held at Miami Beach, Florida.

The teenage Pinay beauty sustained her charm offensive all throughout the pageant. The audience laughed and cheered when she was asked to name her two brothers and nine sisters, "Alphabetically or according to rank?" Gloria clinched the title with her candid answer in the Q&A portion where she was asked what she would do to entertain a man from the moon who lands in her hometown. She candidly offered, "Oh just the same things I do. I think if he has been on the moon for so long, I think when he comes over he wants to change, I guess."

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Mom to "It Girl" Isabelle Daza, Gloria has built a long-lasting career in showbiz, with iconic Filipino film moments, such as in Ang Pinakamagandang Hayop sa Balat ng Lupa, and won acting awards for her performances in Nasaan Ka Man and Sagrada Familia. She is currently one of the stars in the ensemble cast of Pamilya Roces on GMA.

Margie Moran, 1973

The Philippine's journey to the Miss Universe crown continued with Margie Moran, who won the title in 1973, four years after Gloria Diaz did.

Prior to joining the pageant world, she was a model for Auggie Cordero and a dancer who performed in several musical numbers at the CCP. It was that exposure to the stage and the cameras that gave her to confidence and the preparation to win the Miss Photogenic special award, and of course, the Miss Universe crown.

When asked by host Bob Barker what she would buy with a million dollars, the 19-year-old bit her lip and breathlessly replied, "A house and lot because it's the most expensive thing and I can't afford it. If I had a million bucks I'd buy a house and lot and live by myself and other people I love, of course."

Today, she is best known for being active in promoting the arts, as one of the trustees of the CCP. She is also into socio-civic causes, especially those affecting the women of Mindanao. Perhaps in connection with her memorable Miss Universe answer, she is also connected to Habitat for Humanity, which builds homes for the underprivileged members of society.

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Pia Wurtzbach, 2015   

Completing the triumvirate of Filipina Miss Universe titleholders is Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach. She can be considered as a pageant pro because it took her three tries before she was chosen as the Bb. Pilipinas Universe to represent the country in 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The dusky morena beauty definitely placed the country on the global stage when the incident during her crowning caused a stir and became viralMiss Colombia Ariadna Gutierrez was mistakenly called by host Steve Harvey as the winner instead of her. She further endeared herself to fans all over the world with her bubbly personality and ready smile.     

Her winning answer to the pageant question, "Why should you be the next Miss Universe?" was: "To be a Miss Universe is both an honor and responsibility. If I were to be Miss Universe, I will use my voice to influence the youth and I would raise awareness to certain causes like HIV awareness that is timely and relevant to my country which is the Philippines. I want to show the world, the universe rather, that I am confidently beautiful with a heart." She has continued with her mission even though she no longer bears the crown by being an advocate for HIV awareness, encouraging people, regardless of gender, to get HIV-testing.

An actress before she became a beauty queen, Pia is active in showbiz with films such as The Revenger Squad with Vice Ganda for the 2017 Metro Manila Film Fest, and My Perfect You in 2018 opposite Gerald Anderson.  

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Miriam Quiambao, 1999

Her evening gown pre-pageant walk for Miss Universe 1999 caught attention because she slipped and fell onstage. Despite the incident, Miriam got up, regained her composure and finished her walk accompanied by loud applause from the audience.

She even leveraged on this experience for the Q&A portion of the pageant that was held at Chaguaramas, Trinidad and Tobago. Of her fall, she said that she "felt she represented those women who have fallen both on and off the stage" and hopes to be "an example to the rest of the women in the world." Because of her strong showing in all the categories, she was crowned as the first runner-up.

Back home, she became a media personality, hosting shows such as Unang Hirit and Extra Challenge for GMA. She has become a motivational speaker as well and published a book titled He Can Catch You When You Fall about her life experiences. The 43-year-old former beauty queen recently announced her pregnancy through an Instagram post on August 19.   

Shamcey Supsup, 2011

Pageant fans and followers thoroughly enjoyed watching her sashay on the stage, dubbing her graceful movement the "tsunami walk" when she represented the country in the Miss Universe 2011 event at Sao Paolo, Brazil.

Shamcey is definitely the embodiment of beauty and brains, as she has been a consistent honor student since her elementary days, graduating magna cum laude from the University of the Philippines with her Architecture degree. She went on to top the board exams for Architecture in June 2010 with a board rating of 86.60 percent.

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The Miss Universe hosts commented on her "million-watt smile," which landed her as the third runner-up that year. She keeps flashing that same megawatt smile today, when she welcomes guests to the food businesses that she and her husband Lloyd Lee have put up. Using her design aesthetics, the mom of two has planned the Instagram-worthy interiors for their Pedro 'N Coi Filipino restaurant chain and that of the LRT-inspired look of their Scott Burger outlet.  

Charlene Gonzales, 1994

Now married to forever heartthrob Aga Muhlach, Charlene lives a quieter life behind the scenes as a supportive wife and mom, raising their twins Atasha and Andres away from the spotlight. At the Miss Universe pageant held in Manila in 1994, during which she made it to the Top 6, she was the talk of the town. Her quick-witted answer to the question, "How many islands does the Philippines have?"—"High tide or low tide?" she saidis still being used to this day.

The beauty queen's bubbly personality and showbiz lineage has opened so many doors for her after her pageant days. She was known as the dancing queen for her hosting stints on Eezy Dancing and Keep on Dancing, and her PMPC Star Awards-winning show At Home Ka Dito lasted for several seasons.  

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