In her Facebook page dated January 24, 2013, Inés Ligron, the French woman who directed the Miss Universe Japan pageant from 1997 to 2010, criticized the "beyond horrible" and "old-fashion" image of the current Miss Universe Japan competition. Before Ligron's directorship, Japanese women had fared very poorly in Miss Universe competition. When Ligron took the helm in 1997, she did a major makeover of the national competition which included intense preparations of the contestants as well as attracting multi-million dollar sponsors. It also became a popular televised event. Under her directorship, Japan placed in the finals 3 times (2003, 2006, 2007), won its second crown in 2007, and placed in the semifinals in 2008. Though her last two years proved to be unsuccessful (2009, 2010). Pageant fans nevertheless expressed sadness in Ligron's departure and hope for her return.
|Contestants for the Miss Universe Japan 2013 competition pose with pageant officials.|
|MIYAKO MIYAZAKI, 4th runner-up in Miss Universe 2003|
|KURARA CHIBANA, 1st runner-up in Miss Universe 2006|
|RIYO MORI, Miss Universe 2008|
|HIROKO MIMA, semifinalist in Miss Universe 2008|