Chong So-ra leaves for Miss Universe 2011

Chong So-ra, Miss Korea 2011/Miss Universe Korea 2011, left Seoul Monday to compete in the 2011 Miss Universe beauty pageant, which will be held at Credicard Hall, in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Sept. 12.

Chong So-ra, the winner of 2010 Miss Korea, poses for a photo at Incheon International Airport, Monday, before leaving for Brazil to attend the 2011 Miss Universe.

Chong So-ra, the winner of 2010 Miss Korea, poses for a photo at Incheon International Airport, Monday, before leaving for Brazil to attend the 2011 Miss Universe.

Chong prepared for the international event by practicing arranging her hairdo and makeup as well as perfecting her speech and talent show, all without a trainer, after being crowned Miss Korea last August.

“Miss Universe is a big event and I am grateful and thrilled to attend the event as a representative of Korea,” she was quoted by the Hankook Ilbo as saying. The Hankook Ilbo is a sister paper of The Korea Times.

She said the most difficult part in preparing for the international beauty pageant was staying in shape and choosing a dress.

“If I had more time, I would improve my figure and practice for interviews,” Chong said.

The 20-year-old said she wants to show the understated beauty of Korea at the contest.

“I am concerned that the judges might not agree with my concept of beauty. I think Korean beauty comes from inner values,” she said.

The Miss Universe beauty pageant, which celebrates its 60th anniversary this year, is one of the largest beauty contests in the world. At this year’s Miss Universe, 89 beauties will compete, the largest number ever.

Among Korean participants, Lee Honey was named the third runner-up in 2007.

Courtesy of Korea Times

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