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Miss Angola new Miss Universe, for first time

by Azucena...3

After a nail biter of a finale, Miss Universe 2011 was crowned Monday night in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The winner: Miss Angola Leila Lopes, who beat out 88 contenders to win the world's largest beauty pageant Monday night. The 25-year-old beauty queen pledged to help Angola move past its history of war and impoverishment. She also plans... to focus on HIV advocacy worldwide. "As Miss Angola I've already done a lot to help my people," Lopes said. "I've worked with various social causes. I work with poor kids, I work in the fight against HIV. I work to protect the elderly and I have to do everything that my country needs ... I think now as Miss Universe I will be able to do much more." The soft spoken beauty offered down to earth advice when asked about her three favorite beauty tips: Get plenty of sleep, always use sunblock and drink lots of water. She asserted that she's never had plastic surgery. "Thank God I'm very satisfied with the way God created me and I wouldn't change a thing," Lopes said, responding to the question of what part of her body she'd change. "I consider myself a woman endowed with inner beauty. I have acquired many wonderful principles from my family and I intend to follow these for the rest of my life." Lopes was also asked about racism in light of the fact that she's one of the few black women to earn the Miss Universe crown. Lopes responded, "any racist needs to seek help." "It's not normal in the 21st century to think in that way," she said. Contestants hailing from 89 nations spent the past three weeks in Sao Paulo for the 60th anniversary of the beauty contest that had an anticipated worldwide audience of one billion. Mexico's Ximena Navarrete, last year's winner, was on hand to relinquish her crown to Lopes. Rounding out the top five at Monday's pageant were Miss Brazil, Miss China, Miss Philippines and 23-year-old Miss Ukraine Olesia Stefanko, who was the first runner-up. The top ten also included young women from Australia, Costa Rica, France, Portugal and Panama.

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