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Best Dress Designers: 2024 Edition

31, January 2023

Every year Pageant Planet compiles a list of the best pageant and prom designers from the previous year based on our Best in Pageantry Awards. This list may even help you find your next pageant dress! If your favorite designer isn't on this list, you can check out our entire list of pageant and prom designers by clicking Find a Designer

If you're a designer who would like to be listed in our directory, click Create an Account to get started. It's completely free and takes about five minutes to get set up.

Top Dress Designers of: 20232022 | 2021202020192018 | 2017 | 2016

Top 10 Dress Designers of 2023

Top 10 Dress Designers of 2023

10. Samantha Blake Designs - Samantha Blake

9. Seni Chic

8. Jovani

7. Fernando Wong Couture - Fernando Wong

6. Johnathan Kayne - Johnathan Gillaspie

5. Sherri Hill

4. Portia Scarlett - Portia and Scarlett

3. ASHLEYlauren

2. Debbie Carroll Designs

1. LarissaCoutureLV

Top 10 Designers 2022

10.) Mac Duggal

Mac Duggal Photo: Instagram


9.) Fernando Wong Couture

Fernando Wong Couture Photo: Instagram


8.) Alyce Paris

Alyce Paris Photo: Instagram


7.) Johnathan Kayne

Johnathan Kayne Photo: Georgina Vaughn Photography 


6.) Sherri Hill

Sherri Hill Photo: Instagram


5.) Rachel Allan

Rachel Allan Photo: Instagram

4.) Jovani

Jovani Photo: Instagram


3.) Ellie Wilde

Ellie Wilde Photo: Instagram


2.) Portia and Scarlett

Portia and Scarlett Photo: Instagram


1.) ASHLEYlauren

ASHLEYlauren Photo: Instagram

Top 10 Pageant Dress Designers of 2021

10. Tarik Ediz

Tarik Ediz. Photo: Unknown

9. Fernando Wong Couture

Fernando Wong Couture. Photo: Unknown

8. Mac Duggal

Mac Duggal. Photo: Unknown

7. Sherri Hill

Asya Branch. Photo: Carlos Velez Studios

6. Jovani

Jovani. Photo: Unknown

5. Portia & Scarlet

Photo: Unknown

4. Ashley Lauren

Ashley Lauren. Photo: Unknown

3. Johnathan Kayne

Johnathan Kayne. Photo: Unknown

2. Katwalk Designs

Morgan Claycomb at Royal International Miss 2018. Photo: Unknown

1. Debbie Carroll Designs

Debbie Carroll Designs. Photo: Unknown

Top 10 Pageant Dress Designers of 2020

10. Jovani

"My wardrobe is filled with Jovani. I naturally gravitate towards their designs because I think they know the lines of a woman's body and their clothes and gowns just fit well. Every time I go to my favorite dress shop and look around, I grab a style and guess what brand it is....Jovani, every time. LOVE LOVE LOVE," wrote Jade Eilers. 

Miss New York USA 2020, Andreia Gibau. Photo: Jovani


9. Fernando Wong Couture 

Mrs International 2020, Ashley Rae Klinger. Photo: Competitive Image


8. Michael Costello 

Michael Costello with Mariah Carey. Photo: Michael Costello


7. Juan Carlos Pinera

"I love the fashion forward designs that a true couture look and the fit is AMAZING," wrote Dreisa Sherrill. 

Miss US International 2020, Maritsa Platis. Photo: Miss US International 


6. Rachel Allen

National All-American Miss Junior Teen 2020-2021, Peyton Stuewe. Photo: Rachel Allen


5. Johnathan Kayne

"I had the absolute honor and privilege of working with Johnathan to design my ultimate dream gown for Mrs. America and I truly can't say enough about him. His attention to detail, eye for style, and fun personality made the entire experience so enjoyable and the outcome unbelievable. He was very aware of my budget and even helped me find other pieces for my wardrobe (including my interview suit!), and I wore several of his pieces at Mrs. World thanks to his kindness and generosity. He truly is a master at what he does and everything from his ready-to-wear line to his custom work is show-stopper material," write Nicole Cook.

Miss USA 2020, Asya Branch. Photo: Alex Berger


4. Mac Duggal

Gabi Purcell in a Mac Duggal Gown. Photo: Carlos Velez


3. Biji La Maison

Miss Universe 2020, Zozibini Tunzi. Photo: Alex Mertz


2. ASHLEYlauren

Miss Earth 2020, Lindsey Coffey. Photo: Carlos Velez


1. Sherri Hill

Miss Texas USA 2020, Taylor Kessler. Photo: Taylor Kessler


Top 10 Dress Designers of 2019 

10. LaFemme

LaFemme places in the tenth spot for the Top 10 Dress Designers of 2019 with their affordable high quality custom and off the rack dresses. The dresses feature beautiful dyed fabric, chiffons, sequins and much more! LaFemme has been worn by many famous singers such as Taylor Swift, Jordan Sparks, Carrie Underwood and several of the women on Real Housewives! Worn by contestants at Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss USA state pageants, LaFemme makes and sells winning pageant dresses in all sizes, colors and shapes!

Photo: LeFemme Facebook

9. House of Wu

House of Wu comes in ninth spot on our list with their collection of one-of-a-kind designs and off the rack designs! As an international designer having retailers in Canada, USA, Europe, Mexico and many other locations, this designer is an excellent option for pageant girls abroad. Ranging from stunning ball gown designs, to fit and flare and everything in between, the designers can create a dress perfect for you and your system.  

This company stands by their motto, "behind every dress is a dream!"

Photo: House of Wu

8. Juan Carlos Pinera  

Coming in the eighth spot is Juan Carlos Pinera, based in Miami Florida. Juan Carlos states that the fit of his gowns is the most important and cherished part of the gowns. Nautrally, he makes most dresses with corsets to show off the wearer's natural curves and body shape. Dividing designs into three different groups, couture, premiere and ready to wear, there is a Juan Carlos Pinera dress for any pageant girl. His designs were worn on many pageant stages this year, such as at Mrs. Globe, Miss United States, Miss Florida, Miss America and many more!

Photo: dolorescouceiro

7. Debbie Carroll Designs

Debbie Carroll Designs wins the seventh position on our list with her designs, which represent sophistication, elegance, class and glamour. Each dress is hand designed and made by Debbie herself. Using a variety of colors and fabric in her designs. Debbie can help you find your dream gown, whether it be a plain dress with one color or an intricate dress with many sequins and colors involved. Her dresses were seen on many pageant stages this year, such as Miss Universe Canada, Mrs. Switzerland, Miss Canada, USOA Mrs Nevada and many more.  

Photo: Ashley Nadine Bridal Boutique

6. Fernando Wong

Fernando Wong who is known for his unique and beautiful gowns and cocktail dresses places sixth on our Top 10 Dress Designers of 2019. Often setting trends, Fernando adds novel and unique small details to his designs. These details are paired with bold colors and bold fabric textured, so you are sure to stand out on stage with his designs. His cocktail design is perfect when looking for a classic interview cut in a different color and fabric that the judges would not have seen yet. His designs were seen on several pageant girls this year such as, Miss Connecticut, Miss Alabama Collegiate America, Miss Connecticut USA, to name a few.

Photo: Fernando Wong

5. Johnathan Kayne  

Finishing at the halfway point is Johnathan Kayne. Johnathan Kayne dresses, known for their pageant appeal, are fun and high-quality fashions. They feature a beautiful off the rack collection as well as one of a kind custom dresses, designed just for you. Having access to any colors, embellishment options and fabric types, Johnathan can vertuall create any dress you can imagine. He even has an option on the website to request to have a dress created, just to see if you like what he would come up with. You can check it out risk-free!  

Photo: Miss Universe Organization

4. ASHLEYLauren  

Ashley Lauren finishes fourth this year on our Top 10 Dress Designers of 2019. Creating dresses for over five years, ASHLEYLauren is known for her use of full embellishments, layers and colors in the pageant industry. Ashley started designing in hopes of creating dresses that would positively showcase women's curves, and she has done just that! Creating Miss Universe-worthy evening gowns, to stunning stylish cocktail dresses, to interview dresses that leave the judges in awe, Ashley does it all. You'll recognize her designs because they were worn this year by Miss Florida USA, National American Miss Queens, Miss Earth United States Air, USA National Miss and many more!

Photo: ASHLEYLauren

3. Mac Duggal  

Mac Duggal comes in the third spot this year, offering custom and off the rack options for a wide variety of ages and sizes. From Chicago, Illinois, Mac Duggal believes that each and every dress designed will help boost confidence and make the wearer feel great about how they look. Offering dresses with finely detailed embellishment, different necklines, different shape and colors, each dress designed is different. Now having over 20,000 employees, Mac Duggal strives for quality of his products and guarantees every dress sold, off the rack or designer, has the same high quality.  

Mac Duggal is known for sharing the images of nearly every contestant who wears his dresses on Pinterest and social media platforms. Mac Duggal Designs were worn this year by many pageant titleholders including, Ms. US Contiental, Mrs. Galaxy and USA National Miss contestants to name a few.

Photo: Mac Duggal

2. Biji La Maison

Coming in second on the Top 10 Dress Designers of 2019 is Biji La Maison. From South Africa, this couture line is known for creating the winning Miss Universe dress this year! Making unique dresses, with designs rarely seen on the pageant stage, Biji's designs are sure to leave both the audience and judges speechless. Most of the dresses have moving parts in the form of a cape or dangling jewels, giving added movements and sparkle to the stage.  

Worn this year by Miss Universe 2019, Zozibini Tunzi, Miss Universe 2018, Catriona Gray, and Mrs. South Africa, to name a few.

Photo: Miss Universe Organization 

1. Sherri Hill  

Sherri Hill comes in first place this year. Sherri Hill is a big supporter of pageantry, sponsoring pageants like Miss USA, Miss Teen USA and International Junior Miss. Sherri Hill knows the systems of pageantry and can help you create both the dress of your dreams as well as a winning dress for that system. Using vibrant colors, patterns,and embellishments, she creates show stopper looks for both stage competition and appearances. Creating cocktail dresses, jumpsuits, and evening gowns, Sherri Hill can be your one-stop-shop for your whole pageant wardrobe.  

Titleholders who wore Sherri Hill this year were Miss Michigan Teen USA, Miss Pennsylvania USA, Miss Royalty International, Miss Universe, International Junior Miss Queens and Miss Texas USA, to name a few.

Photo: Miss Pennsylvania USA

Top 10 Pageant Designers of 2018

10. Johnathan Kayne

Johnathan Kayne was voted in the 10th spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. He has worked with many pageants this year, such as Miss Shawnee’s Outstanding Teen, USA National Miss North Carolina 2018 and Miss USA National Teen just to name a few!

Highly coveted couture, pageant and evening gown designer Johnathan Kayne has remained a force to be reckoned with since his earlier debut on Bravo’s Season three of Project Runway. From cutting edge prom dresses to chic evening wear, Johnathan Kayne makes it nearly impossible to narrow your favorite pageant evening gowns down to one.

Every pageant girl wants to wear a Johnathan Kayne gown. Who wouldn’t? His designs are catered to a woman’s body to accentuate every silhouette and make you look your best. You feel elegant, powerful, beautiful and confident wearing his gowns.

Johnathan Kayne keeps us timeless and gorgeous through his gown making artistry. Thank you for keeping the pageant girls of the world feeling strong, gorgeous and ready to slay!

Johnathan Kayne. Photo: Johnathan Kayne

9. Juan Carlos Pinera

Juan Carlos Pinera was voted in the ninth spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. He has worked with many pageants this year, such as Miss New Jersey USA, Miss USA and more!

Corsets, lace and couture…oh my! All of these ingredients sound like pageant evening gown heaven. Juan Carlos Pinera is a designer that creates magic. He makes any woman who wears his art feel like a crowned pageant queen. How can you resist his sleek designs and bold cutouts? Be ready to arch those shoulders back as you sparkle on stage in one of Juan Carlos Pinera’s gowns.

With reinforced linings, bustled trains and strategically chosen fabrics you will be ready to win any crown for the taking.

Juan Carlos Pinera at work. Photo: Juan Carlos Pinera

8. Tarik Ediz

Tarik Ediz was voted in the eighth spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. Tarik Ediz has dressed contestants from all systems this year.

If you’re looking for bold necklines shimmering detail and the bold silhouette to make a statement while pursuing your crown, Tarik Ediz is the designer for you. Once you try on a Tarik Ediz gown you won’t know which thoughtful applique or hand embroidered dress is your favorite.

Most of us are very body conscious and Tarik Ediz keeps us in mind with his exquisitely refined thoughtful touches making us look and feel phenomenal. It doesn’t take hard work or weeks of dieting to pull off these fabulously chic gowns. His gowns are just so strong, feminine and sexy. All you need to do is simply slip on one of the Tarik Ediz collections and let the crown come to you!

A stunning Tarik Ediz dress on display. Photo: Tarik Ediz

7. Fernando Wong

Fernando Wong was voted in the seventh spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. He has worked with many pageants this year, such as Miss USA, Miss West Virginia, Mrs. World and more!

Fernando Wong is an elegant designer and a massive fashion monarch with a keen eye for everything flamboyant. Who can deny the amazing details and incredible color of his designs? No matter the shape of your feminine figure, his gowns are specifically designed to hug your waist a little bit tighter and give you some room around the hips to accentuate any shape of natural women.

Wong is known before for his unique evening gown designs, but also for his custom interview looks designed with particular contestants in mind. Some of his designs could be seen on Miss America and Miss USA contestants as they hit the interview room this year.

A beautiful Fernando Wong design. Photo: Fernando Wong Instagram

6. Mac Duggal

Mac Duggal was voted in the sixth spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. Mac Duggal has worked with many pageants this year, such as Miss America, Mrs. America, Miss Oregon and more!

If you want high fashion, conversation-stopping, modern detail with glam and drama attached… Mac Duggal should be your first option. Whether you're a Miss, Ms. or Mrs. contestant, the ageless classic designs of Mac Duggal enhance any beauty queen.

A Mac Duggal couture design is guaranteed one of a kind. No woman looks the same, but we all feel like an out of this world version of ourselves when stepping out in a Mac Duggal gown. Even Miss United States 2018, Andromeda Peters sported a custom Mac Duggal dress at this year’s pageant.

Mac Duggal, the designer behind the brand. Photo: Mac Duggal.

5. Jovani

Jovani was voted in the fifth spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. They have worked with many pageants this year, such as Miss America, Miss USA and more!

If you’re looking for a timeless gown with range of color and style coupled with embellished feathers or perfectly sewn Swarovski crystals, then you need to invest in a Jovani gown.

Jovani has so many dresses and gowns to choose from that you’ll have no issue finding a match suitable for your personality. Many pageant queens have been crowned in a Jovani design. From your pageant interview cocktail dresses to your evening gown competition showstopper, Jovani never disappoints!

A stunning yellow Jovani ball gown. Photo: Jovani

4. Michael Cinco

Michael Cinco was voted in the fourth spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018.

Michael Cinco is collectively a masterful global sensation. Over the decades Michael Cinco designs remain fresh, elegant and detailed with perfect positioning between fabric and Swarovski crystals. All crowns complement his stunning, red carpet worthy couture gowns. His designs for 2018 were modern, elegant and were tailored to perfection. When you slip on a Michael Cinco gown if you look and feel luxurious and prestigious. A Michael Cinco gown is always a “frock to remember!”

The designer behind the brand, Michael Cinco. Photo: Michael Cinco

3. Jimmy Couture

Jimmy Couture was voted in the third spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. He has worked with many pageants this year, such as Miss Intercontinental Malaysia and more!

Jimmy Couture is a Malaysian designer who is a huge Instagram sensation. Any pageant girl would be honored to wear one of his designs. Jimmy Couture has a dramatic flare for chic finishes and details. Brides and pageant girls alike know he is a highly sought after designer. His eye for glamour and detail make your selections a seamless transition to your pageant event.

Jimmy Couture at a fashion show with his creations. Photo: Jimmy Couture

2. Mak Tumang

Mak Tumang was voted in the second spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. Tumang is best known for his most recent gowns seen on Catriona Gray Miss Universe 2018. His design for Gray’s final night of competition perfectly complemented her famous “lava walk.”

Mak Tumang is a rare talent of true, raw beauty. From his modern take on gowns to elegant finishes on his couture pieces, his work stands above most. He has iconic designs that have graced many pageant queens to date. The highlighted floral embellishments of crystal and tulle complement any crowning figure! If you want a gown that stops the presses and attracts every camera in your direction, then you need a Mak Tumang gown to make your pageant debut.

The genius behind Catriona Gray's evening gown at Miss Universe 2018. Photo: Mak Tumang

1. Sherri Hill

Sherri Hill was voted into the first place spot for the Top Pageant Designers of 2018. They have worked with many pageants this year, such as Miss America, Ms. South Carolina and more!

Sherri Hill is the queen of all queens when it comes to pageant girls stalking her designs. Why wouldn’t they? The divine Sherri Hill has dressed so many pageants, prom and homecoming queens. Any crowning moments you can imagine. From couture to cocktail, Sherri Hill’s only goal is to make you look like an international beauty queen. Her new Spring 2019 collection will not disappoint. Hill’s fabric and color choices will enhance any gorgeous palette and sparkle is guaranteed!

The mastermind behind the best pageant dresses, Sherri Hill herself. Photo: Sherri Hill


Top 10 Prom Designers of 2018

10. Alyce Designs

Alyce Designs was voted in the tenth spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. Alyce Designs were seen on prom girls everywhere in 2018 and they’re sure to be a hit for prom 2019.

Alyce Designs has decades of phenomenal design experience that has been recognized and awarded for Chicago prom dress designer of the year and many other awards. They specialize in prom dresses and evening gowns with very unique and innovative styles. Who wouldn’t want an award-winning designer to shut down the prom when you walk in? Alyce designs are elegant and dripping with whimsy. Start hunting for this designer now. This type of designer never stays in your size when you want it.

Alyce Paris Design. Photo: Alyce Paris

9. Tiffany Designs

Tiffany Designs was voted in the ninth spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. Tiffany Designs were seen on prom girls everywhere in 2018 and they’re sure to be a hit for prom 2019.

Tiffany Designs is a collection of prom or homecoming style dresses under the House of Wu. The dresses are known for a combination of great fit and sophisticated design. The dresses come in a variety of styles including ball gowns, mermaid styles and A-line dresses all at affordable prices. Many of the dresses in the collection have beautiful bead work that definitely make them stand out.

A Tiffany Designs gown sure to stand out. Photo: Tiffany Designs

8. Ashley Lauren

ASHLEYLauren was voted in the eighth spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. Ashley Lauren designs graced proms everywhere in 2018 and they’re sure to be a hit for prom 2019.

How can you not love a gown by Ashley Lauren? Her youthful silhouettes are super stylish. Her style is always on-trend as she creates them based on her taste in fashion. You can’t help but adore her shimmering fabrics cinched bodice and flowing detail to make your night, a night to remember.

One of Ashley Lauren's beautiful designs. Photo: Ashley Lauren

7. Vienna

Vienna was voted in the seventh spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. Vienna dresses were seen on prom girls everywhere in 2018 and they’re sure to be a hit for prom 2019.

Vienna dresses are perfect for a fun and edgy girl looking to make a statement at prom. This Texan designer has exclusive styles to invoke envy from all of your friends. They carry the most adorable rompers and trains! Each gown has daring necklines and a stunningly tailored fit right off the rack!

A stand out design by Vienna Prom. Photo: Vienna

6. Rachel Allan

Rachel Allan was voted in the sixth spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. Also a popular pageant designer, Rachel Allan dresses were seen on prom girls everywhere in 2018 and they’re sure to be a hit for prom 2019.

The playful, colorful palettes that are used in Rachel Allan designs leave you feeling powerful and ready to take home the prom queen crown. Rachel Allan has perfect draped tulle with tasteful and prom-appropriate cuts!

Several beautiful styles by Rachel Allan. Photo: Rachel Allan

5. Ellie Wilde

Ellie Wilde was voted in the fifth spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. Ellie Wilde designs were seen on prom girls everywhere in 2018 and they’re sure to be a hit for prom 2019.

Ellie Wilde offers a wide variety of styles for prom and homecoming dresses. Styles in the collection include two-piece, mermaid, ball gowns and short dresses. The dresses come in vibrant colors as well as floral prints and all have a very signature Ellie Wilde style. There is something for everyone in this collection, from elegant and timeless to trendy and fashion forward.

Get ready to stand out in this Ellie Wilde design. Photo: Mon Cheri

4. Tarik Ediz

Tarik Ediz was voted in the fourth spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. Tarik Ediz dresses always stand out during a pageant, so they’re a natural choice for girls looking to make a splash at prom.

Tarik Ediz placed in the Top 10 Prom Designers and Top 10 Pageant Designers of 2018! When you want a sophisticated and unforgettable statement, grab a Tarik Ediz dress for prom. These designs have more than earned a reputation for fabulousness! Don’t you just love a designer that isn’t scared to use printed fabrics? Sign me up!

Another stunning design by Tarik Ediz. Photo: Tarik Ediz

3. Jovani

Jovani was voted in the third spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. A classic pageant and prom designer, Jovani dresses were seen on prom girls everywhere in 2018 and they’re sure to be a hit for prom 2019.

When prom comes to mind, Jovani is a very close after thought. Jovani is famous for its unique styles that make a statement for prom. The mermaid dress is always a winner. From showroom to dance floor, you’re sure to be a hit. All designs come is an array of sizes that look just as good at a size zero to a voluptuous size twenty. Collections range anywhere from simple to extravagant and everything in between. The choice is yours and you’ll have plenty to choose from.

A beautiful Jovani design. Photo: Jovani

2. La Femme

La Femme was voted in the second spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. La Femme dresses were seen at proms far and wide in 2018 and we’re sure they’ll be a hit for prom 2019.

La Femme prom dress collection definitely has a style for everyone. Can you say cute?! You will fall in love with how flirty and feminine all of the dresses are. The collection contains lace gowns, simple satin gowns, a halter dresses and an off-the-shoulder dress with a side leg slit. For those who want their dress to shine, there are many designs with rhinestones, bead work and sequins. There are even short dresses and hi-lo skirt options to choose from. Whatever you’re looking for in your prom 2019 dress, La Femme has it.

An elegant design from La Femme. Photo: La Femme

1. Sherri Hill

Sherri Hill was voted into the first place spot for the Top Prom Designers of 2018. Also earning the top spot for Top Pageant Designers of 2018, Sherri Hill dresses have been voted the best of the best for every occasion.

Can we add up how many high school girls who would do anything to wear a Sherri Hill to the prom? There is not enough time in the prom season to count. Sherri Hill is a coveted brand that celebrates youthful, carefree fun with a hint of whimsical madness that makes her gowns stand out. Every girl should own at least one cocktail dress from Sherri Hill. These dresses are the perfect choice to dance the night away at prom.

Win prom queen with this Sherri Hill stunner. Photo: Sherri Hill

Top 10 Pageant Designers of 2017

10. Johnathan Kayne

I first became aware of Johnathan Kayne Gillaspie during the third season of Project Runway after he had been rejected from the second season auditions. From the first moment I saw him onscreen, I fell in love with his boundless enthusiasm for beauty pageants, his over the top fashion sense, and his warm, easy going southern charm. He was a humble, down-to-earth designer with a passion for making women look like queens, whether they were pageant contestants or not. He won the pageant gown competition of the show by designing the gown that Miss USA 2006, Tara Conner, would eventually wear at the Miss Universe pageant that year. Although he did not win Project Runway, it was clear that he was a designer to watch. Johnathan Kayne has proven himself as a visionary in the world of fashion, and his gowns are nothing short of spectacular. 

He has found a niche that fulfills his artistic sensibility and a bevy of faithful fans that adore his uniquely dramatic and often avant-garde flair with design. His rise to pageant stardom has been exhilarating, and I have no doubt that we will continue to see even more sensational creations from this talented southern gentleman.

Miss Arkansas USA 2018, Lauren Weaver. Photo: Johnathan Kayne Facebook

9. Gregory Ellenburg

Another southerner who has channeled his creative spirit into elegant and sophisticated fashion is Gregory Ellenburg. Ellenburg, who didn’t even know how to sew,  got a late start as a designer, enrolling in the Fashion Institute of Technology at the age of 30. But, since that time he has more than made up for being a late bloomer by building an impressive fan base with his classic, timeless designs.

This commitment to classic style over temporary trends has made him the go-to designer for not only titleholders in the pageant world but also movers and shakers in the entertainment field and the women who rule the upper echelons of high society. His gowns are graceful and polished, making the wearer feel like a true lady.

Miss California America 2017, Jillian Smith. Photo: Doug Hikawa/Gregory Ellenburg Website

8. Rachel Allan

Since 1985, Rachel Allan has successfully created dream prom dresses and lavish pageant gowns for teens, celebrities and pageant queens alike. Her coveted gowns are worn on red carpets and stages all across the world.

The line features fun and sassy short dresses, classic chiffon ball gowns, sultry jersey sheath dresses and structured Mikado evening gowns, all innovative and figure flattering. Rachel Allan never ceases to delight her devoted fans with her breathtaking creations and no doubt will continue to be a pageant staple for years to come.

Photo: Rachel Allan

7. Walter Mendez

When you see a Walter Mendez design, it stops you in your tracks. His gowns are more like works of art than pieces of clothing. From the use of uniquely textured fabrics to the body-hugging silhouettes to the deeply saturated colors, each creation is a jaw-dropping testament to the female form.

Since he is based in Los Angeles, California, it’s no wonder that his designs are seen on every up and coming Hollywood ingénue, as well as Oscar winners alike. But, a talent like Mendez could not be kept a secret, and eventually, the pageant world discovered his awe-inspiring designs. I cannot imagine where this fashion genius is going to go next with his career, but I can’t wait to find out!

Beyonce in Walter Mendez Gown. Photo: Fashion Bomb Daily Website

6. Ieena Duggal

Ieena Duggal may be the daughter of the legendary designer Mac Duggal, but her creative vision is all her own. Ieena’s first collection debuted in 2015 and now includes sophisticated office attire, special event dresses and glamorous evening gowns. From the jumpsuits to the rompers to the couture ball gowns, every piece is carefully crafted to reflect her uniquely modern take on classic formal wear. 

Miss Universe Iceland 2017, Arna Ýr Jónsdóttir. Photo: Jorge Esteban Facebook

5. Fernando Wong

In the same way that a perfect frame can complement a classic painting, a Fernando Wong creation highlights what is best about a woman’s figure. Everything in his line seems like it was made for the pageant world, including sophisticated interview outfits, sleek jumpsuits and ornate evening gowns.

But pageant girls aren’t the only ones who crave his sensual, yet chic designs. Every celebrity and Las Vegas Diva has a Fernando Wong gown in her closet. His designs are just like the women who wear them: sexy, alluring and opulent but still very refined. 

Miss Montana USA 2018, Dani Walker. Photo: Dani Walker Instagram

4. Micheal Cinco

A Dubai-based Filipino designer, Micheal Cinco Couture has become a formidable force in the world of pageant fashion. The gown that he designed for Miss Universe 2016, Iris Mittenaere, when she took her final walk, is indicative of his dazzling couture style.

He created a simple strapless column base gown with an attached crinoline-backed overskirt, but the fabric was made of incredible ombré red sequins. His work is regal and resplendent and appears almost old world. His dresses float and dance and seem to defy gravity. The woman that wears his designs is a woman who wants to be seen.

There is no other designer quite like Micheal Cinco, and it’s exciting to witness his growing popularity in the pageant community.

Miss Universe 2016, Iris Mittenaere. Photo: Miss Universe Organization

3. Mac Duggal

The name Mac Duggal is synonymous with pageantry, so it’s no surprise to see this designer in the top three spot on our list. Mac Duggal is the sponsor of dozens of national and international titleholders, including Miss USA, Miss America, Miss World, Miss Earth and Miss Universe.

At the 2017 Miss USA pageant, nine of the contestants chose to wear a Mac Duggal gown during the preliminary competition. These ladies could choose any gown they wanted, and the fact that they chose Mac Duggal says a lot. But, Mac Duggal clothing is not just for titleholders or celebrities.

This line has been created for every woman, regardless of her age, size or style. In fact, the brand has become so extensive that there are now as many different collections as there are events or occasions in your life. Mac Duggal will always be a mainstay in the world of pageantry, but his work is also relevant to the modern, sophisticated woman who desires to express her glamorous side to the world.

The Mac Duggal Couture Collection. Photo: Mac Duggal Website

2. Jovani

Jovani is one of the most well-known gown designers in the world of pageant competition for a very good reason. It offers its clients near couture quality in every piece they create. When you put on a Jovani gown, one of the first things you notice is the immaculate workmanship that has gone into every part of the dress. From the neckline to the bodice down to the train, a Jovani gown feels like it was created just for you.

This brand is also so beloved by so many women because it offers just about every style, color and price point that you can imagine. Whatever you can envision in a gown, Jovani probably makes it. This commitment to pleasing every one of its clients has made it a brand with a dedicated following. Jovani isn’t just making dresses, but making dreams come true in the dresses. 

Photo: Jovani Fashion Facebook

1. Sherri Hill

Once again, Sherri Hill has been voted the number one pageant gown designer, and it’s really no surprise because there is something for everyone in this line. The brand has the unique ability to appeal to all ages and all levels of pageant competition. Sherri Hill always seems to have their finger on the pulse of what women want, while at the same time being a step ahead of the competition with the innovative designs.

When you look through a group of Sherri Hill dresses, you will find fresh feminine details like delicate lace and colorful florals, as well as sexy, cutting-edge sophistication in the form of tasteful cutouts, thigh-high slits and daring low back styles. But, the underlying factor in all of the gowns is that each one manages to capture the essence of femininity, and I believe that is what makes them so appealing to women. 

Every woman, regardless of her body type, personal taste or stage in life, can see herself in a Sherri Hill creation. And, she doesn’t just see herself, she sees her best self!

Photo: Sherri Hill Instagram

Top 10 Prom Designers of 2017

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10. Ceci Couture

Ceci Couture features fashion-forward dresses for the modern woman. The evening gowns are designed with a woman's figure in mind. They are meant to be feminine and to flatter each woman's curves. The elegant designs are unique and will stand out for any occasion. In 2018, the brand will celebrate 20 years since its founding!

Photo: Ceci Couture

9. Colors 

Known for elegant beading and figure-flattering gowns, Colors has dresses that are fit for a runway. With a wide variety of styles to choose from, there is a design for anyone. Colors has been worn by celebrities like Stephanie Beatriz, Erica Ash, Keesha Sharp and Hofit Golan on magazine covers, at award shows and on red carpets.

Photo: Colors Couture

8. Ashley Lauren

Ashley Lauren is a favorite for several celebrities. Olivia Pierson and Genesis Davila are among some of the notable names to wear an Ashley Lauren design. Special attention is paid to every detail. The fashionable brand keeps today's woman in mind. Fun Fact: Ashley Lauren owns the rights to "National Dress Day," which takes place on March 6 each year. So remember on March 6th, wear a dress and it might as well be an Ashley Lauren. 

Photo: Ashley Lauren

7. Rachel Allan

Despite serious controversy in 2017, Rachel Allan is still a popular name in the prom dress world as was told in the numerous nominations that they received. Their gowns are unique and are designed to help teenage girls feel confident and enjoy their prom experiences. The brand has various different styles and collections. Each dress is different, but the one thing that stays the same is the fun and flirty look each Rachel Allan dress embodies.

Photo: Rachel Allan

6. La Femme

La Femme's warehouse has over 150,000 dresses in stock at all times to ensure that no matter the occasion, it has you covered. The goal is to make LaFemme your first and last stop when searching for that perfect dress for any occasion. This pink gown is a classic prom dress, and you can't go wrong with this simple and feminine look.

Photo: LaFemme

5. Tiffany Designs

Tiffany Designs, owned by House of Wu, has an array of brightly colored and beautiful dresses. Its youthful approach to design is light and fun, making its styles great choices for prom. There are several elegant mermaid styles and ball gowns for you to choose from!

Photo: Tiffany Designs

4. Mac Duggal

Mac Duggal has various designs for several different sizes. The variety of beautiful prom dresses in the plus-sized collection Fabulouss is refreshing in an industry that often limits plus-sized girls' options. Fabulouss has mermaid styles, peplum dresses, ball gowns and more. 

Photo: Mac Duggal

3. JVN by Jovani

JVN by Jovani has practical prom styles that would be comfortable on the dance floor all night. Jovani is one of the most recognizable names in the prom world. Jovani designs can be seen throughout the country each year as girls shop for the perfect gown. This red gown is both strikingly beautiful and would be easy to dance in. A Jovani girl will not only look her best on prom night, she'll also feel comfortable and confident.

Photo: JVN by Jovani

2. Ellie Wilde

Ellie Wilde is the perfect brand for any girl who wants a unique floral print. The floral gowns are some of the best on the market. There are also several other designs and solid colored gowns to choose from. The feminine styles are timeless and photograph beautifully! This blue gown would look flattering on any skin tone. The floral pattern in the midsection of the dress adds a dynamic flair to the design.

Photo: Ellie Wilde

1. Sherri Hill

If you ask a girl what her dream dress is, there's a high chance she'll show you a Sherri Hill gown. Sherri Hill dresses are the most coveted prom dresses on the market. Girls dream of them, pin them to Pinterest boards and save up money to buy the perfect one. As trends change, Sherri Hill adapts and predicts what the next big thing in prom fashion will be. Often, she sets the trends herself. This short blush gown would be easy to dance in while looking elegant and classy.

Photo: Sherri Hill

Top 10 Pageant Designers of 2016

10. Gaspar Cruz

Gaspar Cruz has created gowns for titleholders at the local, state and national level. One of his most easily recognizable gowns was worn by Miss America 2014 Nina Davuluri – she won both Miss New York 2013 AND Miss America 2014 in it! From the simple beauty of her yellow gown to a full sequin show stopper, Gaspar Cruz can create the perfect gown for any personality.

Miss America 2014, Nina Davuluri. Photo: Nick Verreos

9. Laine Berry

As Mrs. International 2008, Laine Berry knows a thing or two about what makes an incredible evening gown. She has since designed a high-end pageant gown line for Mon Cheri. Lace, cut-outs, trains and ruffles –these gowns have it all! If you're looking for a stand-out gown that will surely set you apart from all other contestants, Laine Berry's collection is perfect for you.

Photo: Laine Berry Facebook Page

8. Fernando Wong

Fernando Wong has dressed countless pageant contestants and other celebrities, including Toni Braxton, Janet Jackson and the members of Destiny's Child, just to name a few of his past celebrity clients. His gowns often have features such as low necklines, low backs and high leg slits. Describing his own designs, Wong states that the fit is what sets him apart from other designers, highlighting the fact that many of his designs fit tight on the waist and a little looser on the hips, allowing for the "natural woman" to wear them.

Miss Kansas 2016, Kendall Schoenekase. Photo: Miss America Organization

7. Tarik Ediz

Tarik Ediz designs are arguably some of the most unique gowns in the pageant world. With intricate details, often including elaborate beadwork, illusion panels and low back designs, pageant titleholders wearing Tarik Ediz are guaranteed the "Wow" factor. One of the most memorable pageant moments of 2016 was Miss Michigan's decision to wear a jumpsuit during the evening gown portion of Miss America, designed by – you guessed it – Tarik Ediz! 

Miss Michigan 2016 Arianna Quann. Photo: Miss America Organization

6. Juan Carlos Pinera

Often featuring daring neck lines, lace and patterns, designs by Juan Carlos Pinera are sure to leave a lasting impression on the judges. The brand also frequently uses corsets to ensure the perfect fit for each wearer. One of Juan Carlos Pinera's designs was worn by Miss America 2013, Mallory Hagan when she won Miss America!

Miss America 2013, Mallory Hagan. Photo: Judy Eddy / WENN

5. Michael Costello

In my opinion, any designer that is worn by Nicki Minaj and Beyoncé is a definite winner. Costello's gowns are often solid-colored, and the details are usually in the shape and cut of the gown! Michael Costello is the epitome of high fashion, and his designs are beyond fierce. It's no wonder he was Nia Sanchez's designer choice back at Miss USA 2014!

Miss USA 2014, Nia Sanchez. Photo: Reuters

4. Jovani

Both in prom and pageantry, Jovani is one of the best-known and most frequently sought after designers. Jovani gowns range from simple to extravagant, often featuring bold colors and a lot of beading. It's nearly a given that a few of pageantry's "It" dresses for the year are Jovani styles. Especially with the past year's "Jovani It Girl" contest, the brand is as popular as ever.

Miss South Carolina 2016, Rachel Wyatt. Photo: Miss America Organization

3. Gionni Straccia

Gionni Straccia has dressed many high-profile pageant contestants in pageants such as Miss Ecuador, Miss Honduras, Miss Peru, Miss Teen USA, Miss USA, Miss Universe, Miss World and Miss Earth. He gained a lot of attention in the mid-2000's when he dressed two Miss Universes back to back: Miss Universe 2008, Dayana Mendoza, and Miss Universe 2009, Stefanía Fernández (both from his home country of Venezuela)! A Gionni Straccia gown never bores, as they usually feature big, bold details like ruffles or beading patterns. His most recent major success is dressing our new Miss Teen USA 2016, Karlie Hay! 

Miss Teen USA 2016, Karlie Hay. Photo: Darren Decker / Miss Teen USA

2. Mac Duggal

The favorite designer of Miss World America 2016 Audra Mari, as well as countless other titleholders around the world, Mac Duggal designs in the world of pageantry are here to stay. With the addition of Mac Duggal's daughter, Ienna Duggal, to the brand, there are even more options for gown styles. You can find a Mac Duggal gown with just about anything you could possibly want, including trains, capes, dramatic necklines, swooping backs, slits, velvet... the options are endless!

Miss Wisconsin USA 2017, Skylar Witte. Photo: Future Productions

1. Sherri Hill

It's no surprise that Sherri Hill is number one on our list – you can find multiple Sherri Hill gowns at nearly any competition. Sherri Hill is a trendsetter, and with the frequency of prints and dramatic details in her designs, her gowns are any pageant girl's dream. She even dressed Miss America 2017, Savvy Shields, at the national pageant! Sherri Hill gowns are top of the line in 21st-century pageantry, and we don't foresee them losing their appeal anytime soon! 

Miss America 2017 Savvy Shields wearing Sherri Hill

Top 10 Prom Designers of 2016

10. Alyce

Alyce Paris has a mission to help each girl have a personal style within her own gown. It wants to inspire a unique look and help women find dresses for various occasions. It offers styles for prom, mother-of-the-bride, formal, graduation, homecoming, military balls, pageants, red carpet, semi-formal, sweet 16, weddings and quinceaneras. Alyce Designs was created in 1967 and has been designing amazing gowns ever since.

Alyce Style 1231. Photo: Alyce

9. Blush Prom

Blush has many collections with its brand and uses a lot of intricate beadwork, delicate detailing and modern styles to help each girl find her ideal gown. It offers prom dresses, cocktail dresses and ball gowns, along with a great plus size collection. It has a very young style and is always up to date with the latest styles and hottest trends.

Blush Style 7005. Photo: Blush

8. Faviana

Faviana offers very classic and elegant gowns in its prom collection. The brand's mission is to help women feel good and to celebrate themselves. This is a very giving, genuine, inspiring and elegant brand with lots of concern for each customer. It also created The Faviana Foundation, which gives back to women and helps with careers, education, health, support and much more. This is a great brand with great styles and a great heart at the core.

Faviana Style S8002. Photo: Faviana

7. Ellie Wilde

"An elegant, bold collection that is both timeless and contemporary. Unapologetically confident yet vulnerable and refreshing. Adventurous and incandescent. Inspiring and unforgettable – this is Ellie Wilde" (Ellie Wilde Official Website). This collection offers many timeless gowns that can fit your style perfectly. They have many lookbooks and trunk shows and want to help each girl find her perfect gown.

Ellie Wilde Style EW117031. Photo: Ellie Wilde

6. Ashley Lauren

Ashley Lauren is a young red carpet fashion line with very classic and fitting gowns. They specialize in evening, cocktail, mother-of-the-bride, bridal, prom, homecoming and pageant dresses. The company's corporate headquarters are located in Scarborough, Maine. The company also maintains a showroom in Atlanta. Its designs are timeless and modern and are the perfect fit for any girl looking to find the perfect classic gown.

Ashley Lauren Style 1130 Navy Ombre. Photo: Ashley Lauren

5. La Femme

La Femme is known for its glamorous style and its work on the runway and on celebrities. It specializes in prom, homecoming, pageant, evening, bridal, bridesmaids, graduation and cocktail attire. Its warehouse has over 150,000 dresses in stock at all times so you can find a dress for any occasion.


LaFemme Style 24539. Photo: LaFemme

4. Rachel Allan

Rachel Allan was officially established in 1985 and designs for almost any formal gown occasion. The company offers many different lines, such as the Rachel Allan line, which is the prom and homecoming line, the Rachel Allan Princess, which is a modestly priced line with good quality fabrics and good prices, the Rachel Allan Curves line, which is for plus sizes, and many more to reach the grand total of seven lines. Rachel Allan even has many trunk shows and trade shows all over the country throughout the year. 

Rachel Allan Style 7505. Photo: Rachel Allan

3. Jovani

Jovani Fashions was founded in 1980 and is based in the heart of New York City's garment district. It is known for making classic and fashion-forward designs made for every woman. Jovani offers more than just a prom selection. It carries pageant dresses, wedding dresses, cocktail dresses, and mother-of-the-bride dresses. Pageantry loves Jovani and Jovani loves the pageant world!

Jovani Fuchsia Mermaid Bow Back Prom Dress 41644. Photo: Jovani

2. Mac Duggal

Mac Duggal gowns are modernistic and couture-inspired designs. Its headquarters and design studio are based in Burr Ridge, Illinois, and it partners with gown sellers around the world. It has become another big name in the pageant world and continues to capture eyes in the industry. The designs have been featured in many magazines, and Mac Duggal is continuing to grow as one of the biggest gown companies in the world.

Mac Duggal Prom Style 4476M. Photo: Mac Duggal

1. Sherri Hill

Sherri Hill continues to break barriers in the gown industry, which always keeps her on top. If you are a pageant lover, I'm sure you've heard of Sherri Hill and have seen many of her gowns in person. Sherri Hill has been sponsoring many pageants around the world and always has new and top designs. Sherri's new corporate headquarters is located in Austin, Texas and also has a showroom and design studio in Atlanta. She strives to help women find the perfect design to accentuates the best features of every woman.

Style #51267. Photo: Sherry Hill


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