For the First Time, Thailand Wins Miss International

TOKYO — A 25-year-old pharmacist made history as the first Thai to ever win the Miss International pageant Tuesday.

Sireethorn “Bint” Leearamwat became the first Thai to win a prestigious international pageant in over 30 years at the Miss International 2019 pageant held Tuesday at the Tokyo Dome.

“I didn’t expect to be here,” she said upon winning. “I’m very proud that I can be here. I’m so proud of myself and so proud of my team and so proud of my nation … I hope all women do it like me. If you have a dream, follow it,” she said.

Miss International is a Japan-based pageant held since 1960, and is one of the Big Four prestigious international pageants, the others being Miss World, Miss Universe, and Miss Earth. Sireethorn brings home the first Big Four crown since 1988, when Thailand’s Porntip Nakhirunkanok won Miss Universe.

“Do you know I was criticized a lot when I was crowned as Miss Thailand?” Sireethorn said during the speech portion of the pageant, where finalists had 45 seconds to talk. “I dare to dream to be a beauty queen, even there’s nothing really to my career, a pharmacist, I used all critiques as a power to make myself improve to be the best representative and make my nation proud.”

Bint graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in pharmacy from Mahidol University and currently works as a product specialist for immunotherapy medication. Her win as Miss Thailand (Nang Sao Thai) earlier this year, which determined who would be Thailand’s representative to the Miss International pageant, was her first time on the pageant circuit.