Thai Beauty Queen Wears Evening Gown Made of Can-Pull Tabs to Honor Her Parents
The Miss Universe contest is not just a showcase of beauty, but also a platform for sending a message. This year, Miss Thailand chose to wear a dress that reflected her own life story — it was a tribute to her parents, who work as garbage collectors. Meet Anna Sueangam-iam, the woman who is known as “the garbage beauty queen.”
“We learn from our troubles to adapt and survive.”
Anna Sueangam-iam, 23, became Miss Universe Thailand in July 2022, securing her spot in the global Miss Universe competition. She faced a lot of online criticism because the public tends to favor half-Thai women, while Anna has no foreign parents. She said she ignored these comments and focused on her goal. And she proved them wrong by winning the crown.
She delivered a speech to the suffering people around the world when she won the crown: “You’re not the only ones facing despair. I used to be in despair too. We learn from our troubles to adapt and survive. I would call on all of you to have confidence in yourselves and rise to fight again. If I can, so can you.”
She had a hard childhood, playing with toys that her parents found in the trash. Her father was a trash collector, while her mother was a street sweeper and a maid. She faced ridicule for her parents’ profession even as an adult, earning the nickname “Miss Garbage.”
Despite the teasing she had to endure, Anna always remained grateful to her parents.
She had a tough childhood — she didn’t have a normal social life, and the only places she saw outside were trash heaps. She had to look after her grandmother, living on the charity of others. But she remembers that her parents, who worked hard, always repaired her toys from the garbage. They also paid for her education and inspired her to succeed.
When she won the Miss Thailand crown, Anna said, “Don’t be limited to where you are born. With enough determination, we can change our life.”
During the Miss Universe contest, she wore a dress that was a tribute to her family.
Anna’s dress sparkles with diamonds and soda tabs, a stunning contrast that reflects her journey from rags to riches. She crafted this one-of-a-kind gown from recycled materials, transforming trash into treasure. “This unique gown was purposefully tailor-made with discarded and recycled materials, namely the can tab, to present to the universe that what’s considered worthless by many actually possesses its own value and beauty.”
Designer Manirat wanted to create more than just a beautiful dress. They wanted to create a soulmate for Anna, the only person who can wear it. The dress, called “Hidden Precious Diamond,” is a reflection of Anna’s inner beauty and strength. It is not just a piece of clothing, but a symbol of her identity and destiny.
Anna’s dress is a bold statement of self-love and empowerment. She has overcome many challenges in life with her perseverance, resilience, and positivity. She shines like a diamond, not only on the outside but also on the inside. She is passionate about helping children from disadvantaged backgrounds and using her influence for good.
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