As the age-old saying goes, you have to be in it to win it. Unfortunately for Laos, we have never competed in the Miss Universe pageant but can only sit back and watch other countries win the contest since its beginning.
Laos have always had more important priorities that need to be addressed including reducing poverty and improving the country's education standards, therefore we've never really shown great interest to participate in the competition.
To have a beautiful Lao girl representing Laos on the international stage would cost money that we don't have. Also, the vast majority of people inside Laos are conservative who believe that the competition can damage our culture, this is because contestants must wear a bikini and show some skin as a requirement in the Miss Universe pageant.
Laos participates in beauty pageants in the Asian region and we also have our very own beauty pageant each year in Vientiane, Luang Prabang, Savannakhet and Champassak. The most popular beauty competition is the "Miss Lao New Year" (Nang Songkhan) that takes place in Luang Prabang in April.