Catriona Gray approves senior citizens in Miss Universe Philippines

Catriona Gray approves of senior citizens joining Miss Universe Philippines

/ 01:49 PM February 02, 2024

Catriona Gray. Image: Instagram/@catriona_gray

Catriona Gray. Image: Instagram/@catriona_gray

Catriona Gray expressed her support for senior citizens joining Miss Universe Philippines, saying pageantry gives women an avenue to be “unapologetic” in going after their dreams.

Interviewed by entertainment journalist MJ Felipe, Gray said that pageantry is a “wonderful” platform for women to share “different stories,” when asked about Joyce Peñas Cubales, a 69-year-old fashion designer joining the Miss Universe Philippines-Quezon City (MUPH-QC) pageant.


“I always loved the different stories that come through the platform of pageantry whether it’s the trans community advocate or in showing the age is just a number,” she said. “As a woman, I feel like age is usually used to limit us and our potential. There are terms always thrown at women that your biological clock is ticking or your time is running out.”


While Gray understood the concerns of some pageant fans regarding senior citizens joining pageants, she noted that there’s nothing wrong with women “representing” their respective communities.

“To see a woman who’s unapologetic going after her dream and it may not look like something we haven’t seen before but why not? She’s enjoying herself, she’s representing her community, and that’s a great thing,” she said.

“I understand [the concerns] in a way. Pageantry is a sport and many things are considered [to be] traditional. So as the rules are starting to be lifted, I can understand why the anger in some people and why it rubs them off the wrong way,” she continued.

The former beauty queen also pointed out that pageants are meant to be a “platform” for candidates to represent themselves and what they stand for. “It gives women the platform to represent something, the community or themselves.”

“Not just beautiful women who are fit and are walking onstage. That’s not what pageantry is for me,” she continued. “All of the forward movements that the organization is doing is something I support and I’m happy for. But I understand people who have a traditional sense where, ‘Oh, you just want a fashion show with [good-looking] women.’”


When asked if the Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. (BPCI) is open to such changes, Gray hoped the organization would open its doors to the “forward movements” as well.

“Why not? I love the platform of pageantry. It’s showing what a woman’s potential can be, and hopefully, they’re open to considering some of the forward movements that we’re seeing in other pageant systems so let’s see,” she said.

Gray was crowned as Miss Universe Philippines 2018 when its license was still under the helm of the BPCI. She eventually bagged the coveted Miss Universe title in the same year.

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Cubales made headlines after she was announced as one of the candidates for MUPH-QC which came after the Miss Universe Organization (MUO) lifted the age restrictions for candidates in September 2023.

Before the move, the MUO only allowed candidates aged between 18 and 28 to be part of the global tilt.

TAGS: Catriona Gray, Miss Universe Philippines

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