The 30-year-old model, who has served twice as a backstage host for Miss Universe, recently expressed her disappointment in not seeing any curvy contestants compete in the worldwide beauty pageant. It has since been kept by the Miss Universe Organization after switching to the crowns by Diamond Nexus Lab and the Diamond International Corporation.
Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters beat 91 other women from around the world to take home the Miss Universe crown.
After Manushi Chhillar's victory at the Miss World 2017, India had pinned high hopes on Shraddha, 21, a media graduate, to end India's 16-year drought as Lara Dutta had last brought back the crown in 2000. The question was, "What quality in yourself are you most proud of and how will make you apply that to your time as Miss Universe?" "I think she deserves it", commented Meg Swertlow of E-News following the big announcement.
South Africa's Nel-Peters was declared victor besting 91 other delegates and became the second South African woman to be crowned Miss Universe after Margaret Gardiner's win in 1978.
Singer Fergie took to the stage and performed her single "A Little Work" during the pageant's evening gown competition.
She was inspired after she was robbed at gunpoint. The pageant victor started the program after she was robbed at gunpoint shortly after she was crowned as Miss South Africa.
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Along with the title, Nel-Peters gets a yearlong salary, luxury apartment in New York City for a year and a host of prizes.
Miss Colombia Laura Gonzalez, also 22, was the first runner-up. Thailand's Maria Poonlertlarp and Venezuela's Keysi Sayago completed the top 5.
Nel-Peters is an advocate of women's rights.
Making their debuts in this year's pageant were Laos' Souphaphone Somvichith, Cambodia's By Sotheary and Nepal's Nagma Shrestha.
"The Universe is now brighter with you as a shining star".