(UPDATE) The Philippines' Beatrice Luigi Gomez finished in the top 5 at Miss Universe 2021, which was won by Miss India Harnaaz Sandhu.
Gomez, the first openly bisexual Miss Philippines, extended the country's semifinal streak to 12 years and entered the top 10 and top 5 for the first time since 2018, when Catriona Gray won.
Miss Paraguay Nadia Ferreira was first runner-up while Miss South Africa Lalela Mswane was second runner-up. Gomez and Miss Colombia Valeria Ayos were the last candidates cut before the top 3.
During the top 5 interview, Gomez was asked about vaccine passports by Miss Universe 2016 Iris Mittenaere of France, who was crowned in Manila.
"I believe that public health is everyone's responsibility and to mandate vaccine innoculations is necessary, and if mandating vaccine passports will help is in regulating the rollout of the vaccines and mitigate the situation of the pandemic today, then I would agree on the necessary passport of vaccination," she said.
For two straight editions, Gazini Ganados (2019) and Rabiya Mateo (2020, held in May 2021), failed to go past the swimsuit round.
Gomez wowed Filipino and international fans when she came out during Saturday's National Costume Show dressed as a moon-eating dragon, far from the variations of the terno and Maria Clara-inspired costumes that her predecessors wore.
She also proudly showed her arm tattoo during the evening gown round, where she wore a sparkly red asymmetrical dress with a thigh-high slit by Francis Libiran. Gomez told host Steve Harvey that her tattoo stood for new beginnings and womanhood.
Venus Raj was the Philippines drought-breaker in 2010, signaling a renaissance that yielded two Miss Universe queens -- Pia Wurtzbach in 2015 and Gray in 2018. The country also had one first-runner up finish, two third-runner up placements, and one fourth-runner up finish.