Showstoppers! Our African Beauty Queens show off their National Costumes at the 2011 Miss Universe pageant

The Miss Universe 2011 is heating up! With the finale just around the corner on the 12th of September 2011 in São Paulo Brazil, the beauty queens from all around the world have just a few days left to make their mark.

The National costume segment is always really interesting to watch! Check out our 8 African beauty queens (6 beauty queens from Sub-Saharan Africa (Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Angola, South Africa and Botswana), 1 beauty queen from North Africa (Egypt) and 1 beauty queen from the island of Mauritius) in their various costumes.

Miss Egypt’s costume is our fave – WOW! Miss Tanzania’s is definitely buzzworthy as well. Sophie Gemal also stood out and has definitely represented Nigeria well at the pageant.

Based on analyst predictions, Miss Angola has consistently been rated as the top African contestant this year. Do you agree?

To vote for your favorite African Queen, head over to the Miss Universe website – Click HERE

Sophie Gemal
Country: Nigeria
Hometown: Abuja
Age: 22

Sophie Gemal in Brazil


Leila Lopes
Country: Angola
Hometown: Benguela
Age: 25


Larona Motlatsi Kgabo
Country: Botswana
Hometown: Gaborone
Age: 25


Sara El Khouly
Country: Egypt
Hometown: Alexandria
Age: 23


Erica Nego
Country: Ghana
Hometown: Accra
Age: 26


Laetitia Darche
Country: Mauritius
Hometown: Flic en Flac
Age: 20


Bokang Montjane
Country: South Africa
Hometown: Johannesburg
Age: 25


Nelly Kamwelu
Country: Tanzania
Hometown: Dar Es Salaam
Age: 19


Photo Courtesy of Patrick Prather/Miss Universe Organization, L.P. LLLP , Guilherme Lara/Fotoarena.

95 Comments on Showstoppers! Our African Beauty Queens show off their National Costumes at the 2011 Miss Universe pageant
  • NG MAAMA September 9, 2011 at 9:20 pm

    yeahhhh beautiful…..

    • Ty September 11, 2011 at 12:42 am

      Bn say sth abt olisa adibua battery of his colleague. Stop overlookinf things.u said nthy abt mercy johnson scandal bt u were first to publish d whole pix. Stop hiding truth bring it up u will still get ur endorsement n kp ur friends if dts wat u r afraid of

      • Magnetic! September 12, 2011 at 10:25 am

        its a fashion site abeg….. if u are looking for gossip and everthing in between visit the gossip blogs.

  • molly September 9, 2011 at 9:22 pm

    Yayyy!!! 1st to comment. They all look so beautiful but I wonder why Sophie’s dinner gown is so… bland. Wish her all the best sha.

  • Hot-Angel (Hottu Babe) September 9, 2011 at 9:33 pm

    Dang! Sophie’s traditional wear, WHY?! It’s a beauty pageant and you cover her WHOLE face??! No smiling?! That’s not good!

    They all look good though…

  • looters September 9, 2011 at 9:33 pm

    aww Ms Nigeria looks absolutely gorgeous 🙂

  • ewagain September 9, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    yeah the egyptian chics outfit is definitely a stunner but dayuuum the SA trado does it for me..the colours r so pretty!!!…they all look nice in dr costumes

    • ewagain September 9, 2011 at 9:41 pm

      err but Miss Tanzania sha…just keep a good distance 4m ur fellow contestants …:)

  • madman September 9, 2011 at 9:54 pm

    African women are the most beautiful in the world. Only wish you would wear your real hair — why so much self hate against the hair ?

  • NNENNE September 9, 2011 at 9:59 pm

    Go Sophie ! Edo princess!!

  • Truth be told September 9, 2011 at 10:04 pm

    Why did Miss Nigeria have to have her whole face covered in the trad costume? Anyway she looked nice though. I liked Ghana’s evening gown

  • mjp September 9, 2011 at 10:20 pm

    i don’t think tanzania’s costume was really cultural…i’ve seen tanzanians..i don’t think thats what they wear o

  • quebeecee September 9, 2011 at 10:41 pm

    ps oh make d tanzanian girl no wound person oh..wayo oh nne,..d odas wr lookin great..egypt was definitely d best for me sha..

  • leggy September 9, 2011 at 10:44 pm

    i don’t like ghana’s trado, what is that mess? ghanians do not wear that.

  • TToooooooo September 9, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    woww! thiss is crazy why most of the girls have to be Light skinned?? what happened to the blacker the berry the sweeter the juice? #Randomthought

    • Ame September 10, 2011 at 3:01 am

      LOOL…dat only applies to men

    • ao September 10, 2011 at 8:16 am

      The blacker the berry the sweeter the juice still applies to both men and women. Having light skinned contestants this year does not mean dark skinned beauties do not exist. Anyways, the first Black African contestant to win a major beauty pageant was dark skinned. So, no worries.

      • Yoknyam Dabale May 7, 2012 at 9:16 pm


      • Yoknyam Dabale May 7, 2012 at 9:18 pm

        Agreed. Real talk!

  • gbonju September 9, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    angola is so gorgy

  • Enwongo cleopas September 9, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    Egypt does it for me but mehn these girls are really splendid and beautiful…AFRICANS ARE REALLY BEAUTIFUL TO THE CORE!

  • Sassy September 9, 2011 at 11:12 pm

    Hmmmm, love the Botswana’s chic look…. Seems she gets prettier by the day!!!

  • Lee September 9, 2011 at 11:17 pm

    Sophie’s looking real good. i wish her the best. Miss Tanzania outfit no be joke o! she’s ready for the fight

  • MelonX September 9, 2011 at 11:29 pm

    Se they couldn’t find any black beauty, why are they all yellow? Creative outfits sha.

  • tobi September 9, 2011 at 11:30 pm

    the finest is definetly angola egypt and tz

  • Lizzie September 9, 2011 at 11:34 pm

    Nice one Egypt. Tanzania looks like a Beyonce get up. Love Bey still…lol

  • EFIA September 9, 2011 at 11:51 pm

    what in heaven’s name is GH wearing for traditional wear? there’s no tribe in ghana that wear such an outfit as their Traditional wear.

  • olu September 10, 2011 at 12:19 am

    umm the ghana girl looks like she can be from germany

  • hmmm September 10, 2011 at 12:43 am

    i dint know Tanzanians were vikins 😐

  • Tosin September 10, 2011 at 3:40 am

    Nice girls, love the Cleopatra outfit, the Nigerian doesn’t look Nigerian (as someone previously commented, African women are morphing into Peruvian/Brazilian/Indian-maned lions). Maybe it’s a passing phase.

  • africhika September 10, 2011 at 3:53 am

    Miss Nigeria is BEAUTIFUL!!!! Miss Ghana’s cultural outfit was very very bad.

  • Rocks September 10, 2011 at 4:02 am

    Miss Nigeria’s look rocks, the traditional outfit was great, but wished the headgear showed more face, great presentation, Ghana EPIC Fail, what happened to Kente Fabric, known world wide Rubbish………….

  • toriola September 10, 2011 at 4:37 am

    Ms Egypt looks magnificent. Wow! Ms Nigeira, why you come pull lagbaja cover facE?

  • diva September 10, 2011 at 5:00 am

    damn, sophie sure has a lot of competition. the all are absolutely stunning, found angola quite attractive

  • diva September 10, 2011 at 5:02 am

    i feel like sophie’s height is one reason why she won’t win. she is indeed the shortest of all these girls. unfortunately, this competition is not solely based on facial beauty

  • I am Me September 10, 2011 at 5:05 am

    Confusd about Ghana. Is dat ha costume??? As in realy!!!

  • mary007 September 10, 2011 at 5:19 am

    Our beauties stand out. Love all their traditional outfits. Best wishes.

  • THE AMAKA September 10, 2011 at 6:10 am

    you’re right, only two dark skinned girls, one is SURPRISINGLY South Africa. lol
    I love Nigeria’s outfit, only that it covered her face, na wa! they could have done without that part.
    as for Angola, Ghana, Tanzania, and possibly Mauritius, those are not cultural costumes, sorry. but Ghana, LOL, why am i not surprised?

  • babycute September 10, 2011 at 6:40 am

    gooooooooooooooooo nigeria!!! gorgeous!!! ummm what is tanzania wearing???

  • yehni September 10, 2011 at 7:39 am

    Eh Côte d’Ivoire, where is our own miss? Lol!

  • ao September 10, 2011 at 8:14 am

    Like most said, why cover Miss Nigeria’s face. Geez. Anyways, I love Angola’s and South Africa’s traditional outfits. I don’t understand Ms. Ghana’s traditional outfit. Miss Mauritius’s evening gown does not photograph well. It looks sloppy. Miss Botswana has a nice evening gown as does South Africa. I think the African reps really stepped up this year.

  • Demmy September 10, 2011 at 8:39 am

    They all look beautiful 🙂

  • Lady G September 10, 2011 at 9:36 am

    they are gorgeous

  • evy September 10, 2011 at 9:53 am

    I concur. For a beauty pageant, the face needs to be seen at all times. Why on earth did the Nigeria girl have her face covered! Love the Egyptian’s wear.

    • ofilispeaks September 11, 2011 at 9:49 pm

      she was trying to be like Lady Gaga

  • ivory September 10, 2011 at 10:10 am

    go sophie….dat eyptain chic”s outfit is so gorgeous…. i love ms angola too….

  • kiki September 10, 2011 at 10:16 am

    Maybe the face covering didn’t do it but Sophie looks absolutely gorgeous.

    24 hours to go. Lets keep voting people!!
    For more Photos

  • Nikky jay September 10, 2011 at 11:29 am

    SOPHIE GEMAL is Hot like Fire!!!

  • istidele September 10, 2011 at 11:34 am

    Indian hair on Benin coral beads

  • :) September 10, 2011 at 11:50 am

    Bostwana is toooooooooooooo cute! Ghana is looking good and her abs are tight. Rooting for the beautiful Miss. Nigeria though. Note to future Miss. Nigerias, please tighten those abs just for the competitions after that u can eat all the eba u want. 🙂

  • tamara September 10, 2011 at 11:57 am

    awww dey look so amazingg….

  • rose September 10, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    nelly roks

  • winch September 10, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    The egyptian lady is smashing

  • ishya September 10, 2011 at 1:51 pm

    Miss Tanzania rill rocks..thats outfit z ril gorgeous!for those who dont know,it’s a modifyed version of a masai girl..

    • Salama September 10, 2011 at 7:19 pm

      Eh? Come again? Modified version of masai wear my foot! I ain’t from the eastern axis but I know masai wear when I see it and this ain’t it. This is pure viking/amazon/martian gear. She looks like she just stepped out of some sci-fi movie. Lol!

  • Tiki September 10, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    I like the fact that Miss Nigeria looks like the only girl who would still be pretty if you washed her face…plus she aint got angles or muscles, just soft feminine curves #Iaintalesbo.
    Ghana, ur outfit is an epic fail and a disgrace to all ghanaians u are supposed to be representing. You just proved them right for questioning your title.
    Vote Sophie Gemal!

    • Tiki September 10, 2011 at 1:59 pm

      Well, Miss SA looks like she could rock ‘au naturel’ too…plus her outfit is lovely, and she looks like she totally pulled the fanfare off…

    • Cynthia September 12, 2011 at 1:45 am

      I agree! I am from Ghana and I was like what was that Mess smh. Good luck though. She did not represent Ghana well at all

  • Luvlyn September 10, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    *bangs fists on the table* I want a BN wedding segment. Its been a very long while!! Grant my wish Bellababy!!

  • PRECIOUS September 10, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    sophie gemal God shall surely be with you coz this your cultural dress is one in a million.gush,r u people seeing atallllllllllll? c how beads were used so wonderfully to design a dress.its so beautiful to behold.

  • shay shay September 10, 2011 at 5:43 pm

    S.A is my fave for national costume….

  • dlapikin September 10, 2011 at 7:06 pm

    sophie seems to have a bit of fat on the belly… And I agree with the comment about the covered face! Anyway they are all gorgeous… One of them has to take it for Africa.!

    • mary007 September 11, 2011 at 12:06 am

      I would so love to see your belly, arms, legs to ensure you are fatLESS, even if you are not in the public eye to open your mouth like this you must be buff!!!

  • allen September 10, 2011 at 7:54 pm

    Sophia isn’t gonna win. Let’s not kid ourselves.

    • mary007 September 11, 2011 at 12:07 am

      SO! what if she wins, what will you do?

  • Gloria September 10, 2011 at 8:32 pm

    They all look beautiful,God really did a great work in creating dis beauties am sure it was on Sunday.

  • dorothy September 10, 2011 at 11:22 pm

    Ghana Ghana Ghana….dey neva seize to amaze me, always tryin too hard to impress n dey end up doin it so wrong, dis is just a perfect example…no tribe in Ghana n maybe Africa as a whole wears dat as a national or trad costume..if dey had even used their kente dat every one knows dem for to sew dat ugly gown, it wud hav scored dem a point at least.

  • undecided/decided September 10, 2011 at 11:58 pm

    wow… they are all so preettttttyyyyyy….
    God created sha..

  • Dee September 11, 2011 at 2:03 am

    I’m totally rooting for miss Botswana. love the SA outfit.gorg.

  • The Amaha September 11, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    1st: Absolutely love the Bini costume as a chica who grew up there. Want it for myself. Would reduce/nix the ruffles on the bottom tho, Ai has HIPS like Toolz!
    Miss Sophie Gemal is a gorgeous, stunning chica! Miss Nigeria, Miss Botswana and Miss South Africa are the only ones who wore trado (tho slightly modernized) outfits! Every other person is strutting around in a fantasy get-up and quite frankly they look reedeeQlous! Naija gets my vote. I’m ok with Ms. Angola as well tho that little mermaid costume…hmmm…a sim nothing abeg. They say if u have nothing nice to say, don’t open ya mouth!

  • MsYola September 11, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    they should have got a Nigerian back and front to rep us, sophie is half ethiopian I feel she doesnt do us all nigerian girls enough justice. my vote goes to miss Egypt and SA.

  • Nelly Ib September 11, 2011 at 3:26 pm

    miss nigeria’s is really one of d most traditional. Ehmm… Is dat supposed a b Ghana’s trad wear. **jst thinkin out loud**

  • getch September 11, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    my favourite fshion show in Addis ababa, Ethiopia

  • Obi September 11, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    I think Ms Egypt pulled the old “white outfit magic” stunt, lets see if it works this time. As for Botswana, SA, Nigeria … the only 3 that really brought their traditional elements into their outfits. The others … I don’t know. The girls are pretty/ beautiful no doubt but if we judge by outfit, then the Botswana, SA & Nigeria (with me rooting for Nigerian of course) pulled it effortlessly. How I wish Ms Gemal’s pretty face was shown with that gorgeous outfit.

  • ofilispeaks September 11, 2011 at 9:40 pm

    Why is Ms.Nigeria looking like Lady Gaga? Don’t like it =/

  • fyi September 11, 2011 at 10:14 pm

    Miss Nigeria Universe has a beautiful face, she is petite or short but she is not toned , you can’t come to an international pageant without diet and exercise or go on stage without being toned, she will not be making the top 15. Also, that navy dress is doing nothing for her figure(boring dress), there are probably no personal trainers for women in Lagos, someone should start a business!!!.

    • pynk September 13, 2011 at 12:39 pm

      There are personal trainers. You just have to be willing to put in the work. In other developed countries, girls start pageants from small and are groomed for the big pageants. In Nigeria, u hit 18 and everyone tells u that u r pretty so u sign up. thats the major difference.

  • fyi September 11, 2011 at 10:18 pm

    Miss Nigeria’s traditional is atrocious!!! Nigerians we are known for our flamboyant traditional, why did she have to choose such an ugly traditional costume that covers her face. South Africa looks gorgeous in her traditional, she looks better in it than her evening gown and swimsuit

    • THE AMAKA September 13, 2011 at 6:24 am

      dont call someone’s culture ugly…

  • o September 11, 2011 at 11:53 pm

    I can’t get over miss angola. She is too pretty. 🙂

  • lamidejitog September 12, 2011 at 5:40 am

    Black is Beautiful!!!

  • AJCiti September 12, 2011 at 6:30 am

    I think all of these women are beautiful and I’m happy that Africa is representing. I think it’s unfortunate there is a disproportionate amount of light skin women compared to darker skin women though…

  • dewowo September 12, 2011 at 9:04 am


  • segzy September 12, 2011 at 11:23 am

    ha!!! wh made that AMOURED TANK for sophie gemmal?? choi! lmaoooo

  • amaka September 12, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    SA brought a dark girl wow,thought it will be someone light skinned but she pretty love her dress.

  • Sauce September 12, 2011 at 9:44 pm

    LOL@ the vikings comment…She sure looked like a cast out of Spartacus!….LMAO!

  • Halima September 13, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    I guess congratulations are in order to Ms. Angola and Africa as a whole.Bravo!!!

  • Miu miu September 15, 2011 at 4:35 pm

    SA with the big belly button?

  • vivienne September 17, 2011 at 7:35 pm

    No offence but you guys are just being to local for my liking . I love tanzania’s outfit ….. they were jst tryin to be creative unlike you plain nigerians, and i also love ghana’s outfit…. it doesnt have to be a national costume in particular its also trying to be very creative as well so pls u guys shouldnt have a rural mentality besides Nigeria’s outfit is too plain but still cool tho

  • okwusi gloria September 23, 2011 at 2:07 pm

    i love all d outfits ,its real fashion nd some portrays d african pride and i think its a gorgous look out dere,designs and d beauty ar jst so perfect,kip it u

  • YehYah October 5, 2011 at 2:59 am

    Wow!!!!! Amazing!!!

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