Catriona Gray refuses the term ‘Copycat’ to describe beauty queens who imitate her pageant style

03 Jun 2021 | Angelique Reyes

Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray is one of the biggest names in the pageant world for everything she stands for and her bewitching performances on the stage. Catriona recently released her single ‘Raise Your Flag’ aka R.Y.F for which she also organized a virtual conference.

Catriona’s looks and walks have been an inspiration for many aspiring beauty queens specially her signature look in Miss Universe 2018, from her high-slit red gown and patriotic ear cuff to her ‘lava walk’ and slow-mo turn which is considered as one of the iconic walks in the industry.

It is very evident and natural that at least a handful of beauty queens whether in Philippines or abroad have attempted to recreate this style. Soon after the recent edition of Miss Universe 2020 concluded, Miss Universe-Thailand Amanda Obdam became a hot topic on social media with some fans accusing her of seemingly copying Miss Universe 2018 Catriona Gray’s walk, stance and look and calling her a ‘copycat.’



Gray herself acknowledged this in a virtual press conference on Tuesday for her latest single ‘RYF.’ She addressed the issue about beauty queens copying her style, from her walk, to the way that she would make a turn or a pose. She said, “I don’t agree with the term of copycat. I understand the resemblance perhaps to my brand, because I was very consistent with the ear cuff and the turns, and the slit in the dress.”

She added, "I understand maybe the resemblance in silhouettes, but I don't feel that I can take ownership of the side part, and the slit in the dress, and the ear cuff," and stressed that, "It's not mine to own." Gray believes that embracing a certain look in pageants reflects "the girl wanting to feel her most beautiful, and her most empowered, and her most confident."

Catriona defended Amanda’s case as she said, “It doesn't necessarily put them at a disadvantage. I mean, people may have the recall [and say], 'Oh that's a similar dress.' But each girl has her own journey. If they've gone for that style, it means that they feel beautiful and confident in that. And who are we to say that, you know, it affects their journey? Because it's their decision eh. It's their journey and how they wish to portray themselves through it.”



Apart from addressing this situation, Catriona Gray revealed that her R.Y.F single speaks of her coming full circle in her journey as a beauty queen-turned-recording artist as well as her ‘call to action’ towards uplifting lives.  “In a way, the role of lending my voice to ‘R.Y.F’ is very similar to being Miss Universe because the song has a message that I believe in,” she added. 

Catriona also explained that R.Y.F goes beyond its message of patriotism towards standing up for someone or something and advocating causes that matter amid challenging times. “It’s about raising your voice for something you believe in,” she said.