At the Nihonbashi Cultural Exchange tour and parade

CURACAO – Chimay Damiany Ramos.  She’s the last girl to arrive in Tokyo.  I find her one of the plainer girls in this batch, but still otherwise solid.

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC – Barbara Santana.  We’ve seen more stunning ladies from this country, but this lady could still be classified as attractive, and she has that edge with her statuesque 1.80 m (5’11”) height and her polished stage skills.

ECUADOR – Carla Prado.  See BOLIVIA.

EGYPT – Perihan Fateen.  After a seven-year absence, this country is back, and they fielded a surprisingly high-quality contender.  She seems to exude an outgoing personality and she’s actually good looking.  No one’s really expecting her to make serious inroads into the Top Ten, but she’s garnering positive notices.

EL SALVADOR – Fatima Idubina Rivas Opico.  See BOLIVIA (and ECUADOR), but less attractive than those two.

 ESTONIA – Birgit Konsin.  She’s one of the non-standouts who is actually reasonably attractive.

FINLAND – Milla Kompanen.  If she competed in Miss Universe or Miss World, she would probably be regarded as a good-looking lady, but not in serious contention of making the final cut.    But in Miss International, her brand of girl-next-door beauty is the sort that tends to make her country place very high in three different occasions.  I think with that factor, I should treat her as a possible Top Five finisher.

2003 court: Suvi Hartlin, 2nd runner-up (R)
2005 court: Susanna Laine, 2nd runner-up
2012 Top Three: Vivi Suominen, 1st runner-up

FRANCE – Aurianne Sinacola.  Many pageant fans and pundits place her in their Top Ten lists.  I do indeed see her as a Top Ten contender, but as I mentioned before, this year’s batch is a very level playing field so nothing is really certain.  But she does seem to have the inside track.

GABON – Maggaly Nguema.  With only ten slots, will the Japanese judges make room for an African?  If so, this could be the African most likely to be granted a Top Ten slot.  I like her features.

GEORGIA – inga Tsaturiani.  She clearly stnnds out with her pageboy hairdo.  Her features are an acquired taste.

GERMANY – Katharina Rodin.  In real-world terms, she will be regarded as good looking.  But she sems rather raw so I can rate her as middle of the pack.

GIBRALTAR – Kristy Torres.  This British colony on the southern tip of Spain broke through last year with their surprising but refreshing semifinalist finish.  This lady is of the same similar vein and is competing at a high level–but unlike last year, with this year’s caliber it will be an uphill battle for her to make the Top Ten.

 GUATEMALA – Claudia Herrera.  She’s a fair-skinned Latina, the type that typically fares well in this pageant.  Her making the Top Ten is far from assured, but she is making a great impression, especially with her very pretty face.

GUYANA – Ruqayyah Boyer.  This country saw action in the first three editions of this pageant when it was still under British rule.  It took 48 years after its independence for this country to resume participation in this pageant, and it fielded a veteran of the two most prestigious pageants, Miss Universe and Miss World.  That experience did help her make a strong positive impression, but is it enough to wear down the traditional resistance by the Japanese towards her sort of beauty?  Much remains to be seen, and there is a first time for everything…

Images courtesy of Toru Yamanaka/AFP/Getty Images, Stephen Diaz for Missosology, Miss International Organization, plus personal photos from the contestants themselves unless otherwise indicated.



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