Miss Universe gowns by Filipino designer Michael Cinco in Dubai dazzle on stage

The couturier's embellished creations have become a firm favourite with contestants over the years

Outgoing Miss Universe Andrea Meza wears a Michael Cinco gown as she prepares to hand over the crown to this year's winner, India’s Harnaaz Sandhu. Reuters
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Gowns by Dubai's Michael Cinco dazzled during Monday’s Miss Universe finale.

The Filipino couturier was commissioned to create the dress worn by Miss USA in the evening gown segment of the competition. Contestant Elle Smith donned a structured nude and blue zircon gown, with embellishments that resembled a trail of delicate foliage inching its way up the dress and over the fitted bodice. Pronounced draping over one shoulder was offset by a thigh-high split in the skirt.

Cinco also dressed two of the competition’s judges – Bollywood star and former Miss India Urvashi Rautela and Miss Universe 2016 Iris Mittenaere – in both the preliminaries and final competition.

Reigning Miss Universe 2020, Mexico’s Andrea Meza, donned another of Cinco's custom creations as she handed over her crown to this year’s winner, India’s Harnaaz Sandhu. Meza stunned in a fairytale-esque gown with a shimmering bodice in a deep shade of plum, with ruffled sleeves and a princess neckline, and a full skirt.

“Growing up in the Philippines, where the whole country is pageant fanatics, I dreamt of seeing my creations some day on the Miss Universe stage,” Cinco tells The National. “So dressing up past winners and candidates has always been an honour for me and makes me proud being Filipino.

“My strength is more in haute couture and evening gowns for red carpet events and wedding gowns. But to see my gowns on Miss Universe stage, watched by millions of people all over the world, is another feeling of joy and happiness.”

Cinco has become a firm favourite with Miss Universe contestants over the years. He created the gowns worn by Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach and Mittenaere during their final walks, and has created evening gowns for Miss Canada, Miss Romania, Miss Argentina, Miss Uruguay and Miss Czech Republic in past competitions.

Photos from the moment Miss India Harnaaz Sandhu won Miss Universe 2021:

Updated: February 01, 2022, 8:50 AM