Raissa Santana just made history becoming the second Black woman to be crowned Ms. Brazil — a feat that's been 30 years in the making.
According to Plus55, the 21-year-old, who is from the Southern state of Paraná, won the title on October 1. Afterward, Santana spoke about what this title means to her and those who look like her, Vibe wrote.
“I’m very emotional. This here is a mixture of great emotions,” she shared.
“I didn’t expect to win this title, but I am very happy to have won this title and to represent Black beauty and encourage girls who have the dream of having something, to conquer, to be a model, to be a Miss… Now I want to encourage these girls and show them that they can,” she added.
The last time a Black woman won this coveted recognition was in 1986, when Deise Nunes was crowned the winner. And speaking of record-breaking, this year’s competition boasted the most Black contestants in its 61-year history, with six out of the 27 contestants being of African descent.
Granted, that’s not a balanced representation of the Brazilian people since 54 percent of the country’s population considers themselves Black or multiracial, but it’s a good start to breaking down the Eurocentric standards of beauty in South America.
Congrats Raissa and good luck competing for the Miss Universe title!
(Photo: Raissa Santana via Instagram)
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