Transgender women can now participate in Miss Costa Rica 2023, reflecting the societal demand for diversity, equity, and social inclusion in beauty pageants.

  • Transgender women can now participate in the Miss Costa Rica beauty pageant.
  • The new guidelines align with the international standards of the Miss Universe franchise.
  • These changes reflect the growing societal demands for ‘diversity, equity, and social inclusion’.

The Miss Costa Rica organisation, the nation’s premier beauty pageant, made a groundbreaking announcement last Friday. For the first time, transgender women will be able to compete in the upcoming event.

This progressive move aligns the national competition with the international standards of the Miss Universe franchise, which also accepts trans women.

Anne Jakrajutatip, the Thai owner of Miss Universe and a transgender woman herself, has been advocating for the contest to mirror societal demands for diversity, equity, and social inclusion.

“Greater equity and social inclusion are the new demands of our times. Our pageants should be no exception,” said Jakrajutatip in one of her interviews.

The new guidelines state that a contestant, even if not designated female at birth, must provide legal and governmental recognition of the assigned sex, including certification that any required sex reassignment, as determined by the country and certified by a physician, has been completed.

In addition to this major shift, the organisation detailed other requirements for the 2023 contest:

  • Costa Rican nationality
  • Residency in Costa Rica for at least the last 6 months
  • Age between 18 to 28 years old as of December 2023
  • Good physical and mental health
  • Any marital status, with or without children
  • Not a participant in the last 2 Miss Costa Rica contests
  • Student or university graduate
  • Medically and legally recognised as a woman in Costa Rica
  • Updated documentation, especially identity card and passport
  • Not the current winner of a title or the first runner-up in any other international contest or competition
  • Charisma, education, manners, discipline, and responsibility
  • Absence of lewd or compromising publicity material
  • Full Covid-19 vaccination
  • Time availability

The deadline for applications is May 20th, 2023, with the casting date yet to be announced.