Miss PH-Earth Contestant is Disqualified for Her Height

Does height matter when it comes to beauty?
Photo/s: Michelle Angela Okol on Instagram

(UPDATE) A Miss Philippines-Earth contestant said Thursday she was disqualified for falling short of the minimum height requirement, sparking debate among fans on how the pageant aimed at environmental awareness defines physical beauty.

Michelle Angela Okol, who previously competed at Miss Universe-Philippines, said that her height did not reach 5'4". She said organizers told her that allowing her to proceed would open Miss Philippines-Earth to "bashing".


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Okol said that had her height was measured officially only after months of preparation for the local qualifier for Miss Earth. It's the first time in two years that Miss Philippines-Earth is holding a live event. The 2020 and 2021 winners were chosen via videoconference and pre-taped events.

On the average, Filipinas are around 5 feet tall, which makes 5'4" above average. Airline cabin crew require at least 5'3", enough to reach overhead compartments.

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Miss Universe Philippines contestant Ayn Bernos, whose height is 5'3", said she "lost all respect" for "hypocritical" organizations who hide behind their causes while harming women. 

"The Earth you so lovingly advocate for includes women below 5'4, btw," she said in an Instagram Story posted Friday. 

"Always here for you," Bernos told Okol in a separate IG Story.

Since 2021, Miss Universe Philippines has accepted applicants regardless of height to promote inclusivity as pageants, while aiming to promote world peace, has also become a magnet for bashing based on height, weight, skin color and texture of hair.

The reigning Miss Universe, India's Harnaaz Sandhu, has parried criticism about her weight gain.

Miss Universe Philippines 2021 Beatrice Luigi Gomez during her reign broke stereotypes on bisexual women and tattoos.

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