Nigeria Makes History At Miss Universe 2021, Wins Best National Costume

Miss Universe Nigeria, Maristella Okpala, has won the Best in National Costume Award at the 2021 Miss Universe beauty pageant.

The grand finale took place in Eilat, Israel on Sunday, December 12. With this feat, Nigeria becomes the first African country to ever win Best National Costume at Miss Universe.

Inspired by the famous traditional masquerade of Nigeria’s Mmaawa tribe, the elaborate ensemble includes a beaded headdress and an intricate three-foot tribal mask with a colourful ancient back cape, patterns and embellishments.

They “portray the African dashiki which offers a visual appeal and forms meant to invoke the ancestral spirits.”

The costume was designed by Filipino fashion student, Kenny Gasper.

Reacting to her win on Instagram, she wrote:

The thought, the excitement and the honour of representing My beloved country Nigeria and coming back with such a prestigious / incredible award can’t be over-emphasized. Nigeria, Africa we made HISTORY

Before embarking on this journey, I told God I wanted my footprints to be left in the sand of time, to make history not only to Nigerians but one that touch across the whole of Africa.

I went in with an open heart, taking on every strides as they came, need I know that there was a special gift he has kept aside for me.

I wanted the universe to connevt and feel the rich African cultural heritage.I’m also very glad I passed a message through my costume and made a huge impact on the universe stage.

My costume is a representation of hardwork, perversance, resilience and consistency and it embodies one of the major aspect of my @missuniverse preparation.

I feel so ecstatic and without words to express my sincere gratitude to everyone who made this dream come through. Most especially to my costume designer @kennedy_gasper thank you for giving me exactly what I have envisioned in my head for so long?.

Special thanks goes to @missuniverse For finding me worthy of this title 

To my Family , Friends, and Fans all over the universe, This is for you 

Thank you so much for the love and support I Love You All 



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