Last night, Zozibini Tunzi of South Africa was crowned Miss Universe – the most coveted beauty pageant title in the world. But her victory meant so much more than that, as now, for the first time ever, all of the major pageant titles in the world – Miss America, Miss USA, Miss Teen USA, and now, Miss Universe – are held by black women.
Miss Universe, Zozibini Tunzi, joined Miss America Nia Franklin, Miss USA Cheslie Kryst, and Miss Teen USA Kaliegh Garris.
“I grew up in a world where a woman who looks like me, with my kind of skin and my kind of hair, was never considered to be beautiful,” Tunzi said, according to the BBC.
“I think that it is time that that stops today.”
Pageants and the beauty industry, in general, are known for being painfully exclusive and lacking much-needed progression. So, for a clean sweep like this to happen, is a huge milestone.
“It is important to little brown and black girls to see three strong figures, three strong women, African American women that are doing so much great work,” Miss America, Nia Franklin, told the New York Times back in May.
“People will argue that race doesn’t matter. But race does matter in America, because of the history, because of slavery.”
While none of the women are the first to wear the crown for their title, the fact that currently, every title is held by a black woman has seen people take to social media to express their excitement at the history-making moment.
Oprah was amongst the slew of celebs, beauty moguls, and fans congratulating Tunzi on her huge win.
Hundreds of other social media users have been pointing out truly how important her being crowned as Miss Universe is and the significance the women holding all four of the major titles.
This news proves that representation is vital, not just in the world of pageants, but beyond that too.
Congrats Zozibini Tunzi!