The Miss Universe Organization has announced important change. Starting 2024, there will be no age limits for pageant constestants. The news come in the face of R’Bonney Gabriel, one of the oldest Miss Universe winners and the current crown holder, attended New York Fashion Week for Tanner Fletcher’s new collection.
Gabriel was previously asked about age extensions in her Miss Universe competition. “I am 28 years old, and that is the oldest age to compete,” she answered during the top-five question round. “My favorite quote is, ‘If not now, then when?”‘ Because as a woman, I believe age does not define us. It’s not tomorrow. It’s not yesterday. But it’s now. The time is now that you can go after what you want.”
Amy Emmerich, the CEO of Miss Universe, says Gabriel served as one of the organization’s main inspirations to make the change. “She was our muse in making this decision, but it’s been a long time coming,” she said. “As women, we all understand that youth is not and has never been a requirement for beauty, and there’s no reason why it should be a requirement for Miss Universe.”
The change will apply on all pageants that are a part of the organization starting 2024. From that moment on, every woman over the age of 18 will be able to participate.
Miss Universe has been pushing for change over the last couple of years
Gabriel spoke about the fact that she’s one of the oldest Miss Universe winners to take the crown, and that the issue was a personal one.
The decision is the latest in a string of changes taken on by the Miss Universe Organization that are pushing for a more inclusive and modern pageant. In 2022, the organization announced that it would begin allowing married women and mothers to compete, a surprisingly controversial change in this day and era.
Andrea Meza, the winner of Miss Universe 2020, has been vocal about critics who don’t want the organization to change.