Indonesia's Miss World competition bans bikinis

Pageant contestants have been wearing two-pieces since it began in 1951 -- but no longer

By Prachi Gupta

Published June 7, 2013 9:04PM (EDT)

  (<a href=''>Sergey Sukhorukov</a> via <a href=''>Shutterstock</a>)
(Sergey Sukhorukov via Shutterstock)

The Indonesian branch of the Miss World competition has banned bikinis from its beauty pageant, replacing them with conservative beach sarongs after facing mounting pressure from "hard-line Muslim groups," reports the AP:

All of the more than 130 contestants will be required to wear Bali's traditional long sarongs instead of the sexy bikinis that are historically part of the competition, said Adjie S. Soeratmadjie of the RCTI, the official broadcaster and local organizer.

..."There will no bikini in this year's Miss World pageant to respect our traditional customs and values," Soeratmadjie said, adding that the London-based Miss World Organization is on board with the decision.

Contestants in the Miss World competition have been wearing two-piece swimsuits since its inception, in 1951.

Indonesia boasts the largest Muslim population in the world, and though the country is secular and moderate, extremist groups have become more vocal in recent years.

Prachi Gupta

Prachi Gupta is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on pop culture. Follow her on Twitter at @prachigu or email her at

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Beauty Pageants Bikinis Indonesia Miss World Radical Islam Swimsuits