Miss Universe contestants take the costume part of the national costume showcase seriously. In 2016, stunning Miss Universe contestants from around the world donned national costumes that ranged from the gorgeous to the garish. Regardless of your opinions on beauty pageants, there’s no denying that these eight national costumes are downright impressive.
We’re drooling over Miss Venezuela Mariam Habach’s flamenco sea goddess outfit.
And majorly impressed by Miss Ecuador Connie Jimenez’s ability to look elegant while dressed like a giant hummingbird. Ecuador, home to over 130 hummingbird species, is known as the “Land of Hummingbirds.”
Keeping with the bird theme is Miss Nicaragua Marina Jacoby, whose elaborate bird costume reportedly weighed in at over 20 pounds for the headpiece and wings alone.
Did we mention the Miss Universe contestants are fond of birds? Miss Indonesia Kezia Warouw opted for a bird-warrior theme with her mythology-inspired outfit. In a battle of the birds, we’re putting our money on Miss Indonesia.
Miss Malaysia Kiran Jassal headed in a different direction with her 2016 national costume. Jassal’s space age pantsuit featured Kuala Lumpur’s iconic Petronas Twin Towers on each sleeve. Inanimate objects need love too!
Miss Myanmar Htet Htet Htun won the pageant’s Best National Costume award with her Burmese puppetry-inspired costume. The nearly 90-pound costume was complete with strings and levers that, when pulled, revealed an intricate painting of temples and wildlife.
And Miss Vietnam Le Hang donned a stunning costume that combined the lotus shape with a nod to Vietnam’s rich agricultural tradition.
But the best costume is Miss Sweden, whose outfit skipped right past pretty and straight into bizarre. Ida Ovmar’s Pippi Longstocking-inspired national costume included not only mismatched socks and horizontal pigtails, but also a life-size horse cutout that she carried around.
Want more? Check out Miss Myanmar’s crazy marionette performance:
Featured Image of Miss Universe Curaçao via Twitter @MaryRose89