Why Did Miss Janina San Miguel Win Binibining Pilipinas World 2008?

What is a beauty pageant?


First, a beauty pageant is a celebration of beauty. It is an act of acknowledging and giving honor to the beauty that God has given onto us. This beauty constitutes cleanliness of body and spirit, pureness of heart and soul, and goodness of actions and deeds; God who is the source of all things beautiful serves as a perfect point of reflection of the definition of the word beauty. With this alone, if the creator of beauty Itself will chose a good role model to the people, would not asks a question to measure one’s intelligence and declare her as the fairest of all.

As a beauty pageant critic, I do not find any reason for Janina San Miguel not to win the title that night. Why did Miss Janina San Miguel win Binibining Pilipinas World 2008 then?

What is the purpose of the questions and answer portion?


The pageant question and answer portion (in international pageants) is not made to measure one’s IQ or Intelligence Quotient and I think that is one of the misconceptions of the society.

The Q&A portion is there to measure not the delegate’s intellectual capacity but the candidate’s EQ or Emotional Quotient. A pageant is never an intellectual competition. It may not even a competition itself for some. Beauty pageants must not be taken lightly.

The Q&A portion is there to measure one’s personality: one’s attitude, so that judges will see and will have basis aside from the skin-deep beauty of the delegate. The judges have the need to see the beauty within – the beauty beneath the skin deep – the content of one’s character plus (and weighed against) the beauty outside which exemplifies Self-Discipline and Self-Control when one maintains and enhances her physical appearance.

It may be inferred then that pageant interview questions should be character revealing and extract the real ‘you’ of the candidate and so the invited judges are expected to have this certain skill in asking questions.

Why did Miss Janina San Miguel Win Binibining Pilipinas World 2008?


The audience that night laughed as Janina displayed the human speech that is naturally full of mistakes – and that is true. That is acceptable. The courage to face and be real to oneself and to other people in the global setting and the confidence that Miss San Miguel portrayed are unequaled by the other delegates. Her external beauty too has already gained advantage for her as she topped the Swimsuit and Gown Segment.

For reference sake, here is the criteria of Miss Philippines:

Beauty of Face: 50%                   (self-introduction)

Figure: 30%                                 (swimsuit segment)

Poise and Personality: 10%         (gown competition)

Intelligence: 10%                         (interview portion)

I hope you have a clear definition of the word “Intelligence” above.

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