The BEST of MUO’s National Costume Competition: Staff members at the Miss Universe Organization share their thoughts on the most memorable national costumes in our pageant's history.

Amelia Vega's national costume from the 2003 Miss Universe Pageant was especially memorable for me. It resembled the Caribbean Sea surrounding the island of her beautiful homeland, the Dominican Republic. It made me want to go scuba diving!
- Emily Panasci, Office Coordinator

I will never forget Dayana Mendoza's national costume from the 2008 Miss Universe Pageant which was inspired by women of the Amazon. It was made from stone, crystal and acrylic. Very unique!
- Emily Crabbs, Executive Manager of Production & Legal

Nothing compares to the wings on the national costume of Denise Quinones at the 2001 Miss Universe Pageant. It was stunning!
- Tricia Langa, Director of Domestic Licensing

At the 2008 Miss Universe Pageant Miss Thailand, Gavintra Photijak, walked away with the award for Best National Costume after fashioning an elegant native Thai garb. It embodied the rich spirit of Thai history.
- Annette Cammer, Director of International Licensing

I enjoyed Miss Australia Jesinta Campbell's national costume at the 2010 Miss Universe Pageant. It represented the indigenous culture of Australia by including the national flag… and of course who doesn't love the Uggs!
- Jason Webski, Marketing Manager

I think Miss Italy 2010, Jessica Cecchini, had one of the coolest props of all time. She carried a shining metal sword with her as part of her Roman Gladiator costume. That thing was heavy!
- Tom Lew, Social Media & Web Content Producer

Miss Korea 2000, Kim Sa-rang, wore an awesome Korean hanbok dress with vibrant colors. It is one of my favorite national costumes to date!
- Kristen Spirko, PR Coordinator

I liked the national costume of Miss USA 2009 Kristen Dalton. In her NASCAR costume she looked like she was ready to drive circles around the other contestants!
- Tony Cruz, Director of Informational Services & Administration

What makes a great national costume is when it is a true characterization of the country being represented. Lara Dutta did just that at the 2000 Miss Universe Pageant when she wore exotic Indian garb with native colors and textiles.
- Carlos Fernandez, Manager of Domestic Licensing

Ximena looked beautiful in her national costume at the 2010 Miss Universe Pageant! Her costume represented the Mayan culture and was made of beautiful silk with gold ribbon, pheasant feathers and snail shells.
- Andrea Chafouleas, Talent Department Manager