Miss Arizona Cassidy Jo Jacks channeled a warrior to represent her home state.
She wore a red leotard with shoulder pads and fringe as an homage to Arizona’s Army National Guard, which won the National Best Warrior competition in 2020. The bronze accents on her shield, boots, and headpiece were inspired by her state’s mineable copper.
Jo Jacks, 27, is a longtime pageant participant, getting her start in the seventh grade.
She’s also skilled in outdoor activities like deer hunting and skiing. She currently works in medical sales.
Miss California Sabrina Lewis transformed into a poppy flower with a daring green leotard and red accessories.
Her daring leotard — inspired by California’s state flower and its abundance of poppy fields — was green with sheer panels. Her skirt, armband, and headpiece, on the other hand, were designed to look like red flower petals.
Lewis, 24, is no stranger to runways, as she’s previously appeared in Los Angeles Fashion Week.
She also studied business administration at the University of California and volunteered at the US Embassy in Benin, West Africa.
Miss Florida Ashley Carino walked the runway with a hand-crafted flamingo atop her head.
Her look was inspired by Florida’s population of flamingos and her home state’s natural diversity. It was created using synthetic feathers and is meant to show the grace and innocence of the pink birds, as well as the joy for life that can be found throughout Florida.
Carino, 27, has a degree in aerospace engineering and is an advocate for children struggling with their mental health.
Her interest in pageants can be traced back to her mother, who used to compete in their native Puerto Rico, according to the Osceola News-Gazette.
Miss Hawaii Allison Chu dressed as a vibrant coral reef.
The blue color of her costume matches the blue water that surrounds the islands of her home state. The coral-reef headpiece and wings represent the dedication of Hawaii’s people to protect their land and resources.
Chu, 27, is a model and actress who has dreams of becoming a dermatologist.
She’s also a professional hula dancer, professional oyster shucker, and a classically trained opera singer.
Miss Idaho Katarina Schweitzer’s bold purple ensemble pays homage to “The Gem State.”
Schweitzer’s purple costume was inspired by Idaho’s state gem, the star garnet, which can only be found in Idaho and India. Her wings pay tribute to the monarch butterfly, Idaho’s state insect.
Schweitzer, 27, has worked as a special education teacher for years and plans to earn her Ph.D. in children’s development.
She is also a former cadet commander for the Naval Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps and was awarded the Legion of Valor.
Miss Kansas Gracie Hunt’s costume was inspired by her state’s motto: “Ad Astra per Aspera,” or, “To the stars through difficulties.”
The sparkling strapless leotard she wore, as well as the attached stars and skirt, were created by a Peruvian designer who is deaf and mute. They used Swarovski crystals in the colors of the Kansas flag across its bodice and LED stars above her head.
Hunt, 22, is working toward earning a master’s degree in sports management. She hopes to one day become the first female NFL commissioner.
She’s also a global ambassador for the Special Olympics and is training herself to compete in the steeplechase competition at the 2024 Olympics.
Miss Kentucky Elle Smith dressed as a jockey for the pageant stage to honor the Kentucky Derby.
The pageant queen chose to wear blue and white in honor of the University of Kentucky, her alma mater. Smith’s outfit also features a rose garland, which is given every year to the Kentucky Derby winner.
Smith, 23, currently works as a full-time reporter for WHAS, an ABC affiliate in Louisville, Kentucky.
She participated in musical theater for 10 years and plays both the viola and piano.
Miss Louisiana Tanya Crowe brought Carnival to the pageant stage with her dramatic feathered ensemble.
The purple, green, and gold costume features an authentic Mardi Gras collar and the fleur-de-lis, Louisiana’s official state symbol.
Crowe, 28, was an NFL cheerleader for the New Orleans Saints for four seasons.
She currently helps manage her family’s dairy farm.
Miss Maine Veronica Iris Bates’ ethereal costume is designed to look like a sunrise peeking out from a mountain.
Her outfit pays homage to Cadillac Mountain in Maine’s Acadia National Park. The mountain is the first piece of land in the US to see the sunrise during the winter season.
Bates, 21, joined the United States Air Force after graduating high school, working as a Security Forces member.
She is currently studying criminal justice and psychology at American Military University.
Miss Massachusetts Sarah De Souza paid homage to both Boston and Brazil with her colorful state costume.
A first-generation Brazilian American, De Souza wore a traditional Carnival costume in tribute to Massachusetts’ large population of immigrants from Brazil, Cape Verde, and Haiti. The yellow and blue feathers represent her state’s flag, while the horn refers to the unicorn symbol of the Boston Marathon.
De Souza, 25, currently works as an interior designer and artist.
She also interviews immigrants from around the world for her podcast “ISM,” which stands for “Immigrant Stories Matter.”
Miss Montana Jami Forseth wore a gown with feathers and daring cutouts to represent Yellowstone National Park.
The front of Forseth’s sequined gown was adorned with glittering circles to represent Yellowstone’s geysers, while the back featured illustrations of horses.
Forseth, 24, has a black belt in the martial art of Chi-Tu Do and currently teaches self-defense to human trafficking survivors.
She’s also a court-appointed special advocate for foster children.
Miss Nevada Kataluna Enriquez designed and made her own costume for the competition.
Her blue ensemble included a bedazzled bikini, feathered wings, and a star headpiece. It was inspired by extravagant stage outfits seen at Las Vegas shows, as well as Nevada’s state flag, mineral resources, and state bird.
Enriquez, 28, speaks four languages and is an advocate for mental health and the LGBTQ community.
She’s made history as the first openly transgender woman to compete in Miss USA.
Miss New Hampshire Taylor Fogg combined her love of her home state, hiking, and the outdoors.
Her green strapless dress was designed to look like New Hampshire’s state tree, the white birch. The leaf-covered look also features purple lilacs and nods to the white-tailed deer, New Hampshire’s state animal.
Fogg, 26, is a law student who wants to work as an attorney. She’s also passionate about science and has worked on genetic, respiratory, and concussion research.
In her spare time, she works as a running guide for athletes with disabilities, and as a cycling trainer for wounded veterans.
Miss New Jersey Celinda Ortega dressed as a blooming flower patch to represent the Garden State.
She wore a yellow bedazzled bikini top, as well as a cage-style skirt covered in colorful flowers meant to represent the diversity of New Jersey. Some also hold personal significance to her, like the gladiolus and poppy that double as her birth-month flowers.
Ortega, 27, is completing a degree in biomedical science as part of her journey to become a rheumatologist.
As a bilingual first-generation Dominican American, she also spends much of her time giving back by mentoring young girls.
Miss New Mexico Christa Schafer looked out of this world in a green-and-silver alien-inspired outfit complete with a UFO.
The costume, designed by Fernando Wong, references the 1947 Roswell Incident — which many theorized was a UFO crash in the New Mexico city.
Schafer, 26, has a degree in English literature and is currently working on a children’s book.
She is also the founder of “A Blessing in Disguise,” a program in which she dresses as princesses to visit terminally ill children in hospitals.
Miss New York Briana Siaca walked the pageant stage as the Statue of Liberty to represent her state.
To pay tribute to New York’s diverse population, Siaca’s entire costume was exclusively created by Latino designers based in the state. Mexican designers The Estrada Twins made her gown, while Simon Villalba, a costume designer from Paraguay, created her headpiece.
This isn’t the first time a pageant queen has been inspired by Lady Liberty. Former Miss USA Cheslie Kryst also channeled the iconic landmark during the Miss Universe National Costume Show in 2019.
Siaca, 27, has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. She currently works for an investment firm where she manages over $300 million in assets.
Miss North Carolina Madison Bryant looked glamorous in a white gown and floral accessories.
She was so inspired by North Carolina’s state flower — the flowering dogwood — that she had blossoms of the plant hand-crafted with Swarovski crystals to cover both her dress and headpiece.
Bryant, 24, studied psychology, completed award-winning research on PTSD, and is now earning a second degree in the nursing field.
She’s also an athlete who played volleyball in Italy, and a musician with 15 years of vocal experience in opera and jazz.
Miss North Dakota shined across the stage in a golden outfit with a special meaning.
Her halter minidress was chosen to represent perseverance and North Dakota’s wheat fields, as Vogel comes from a family of farmers. It was covered in gold fringe to mimic wheat stalks moving in the wind. She also wore gold wings in honor of her late grandmother.
Vogel, 21, is a nursing student and model who’s walked in New York Fashion Week.
She’s also a founder of a nonprofit called Limitless, which she uses to advocate for people who have Down’s syndrome and other disabilities.
Miss Oregon Allison Cook was inspired by her state seal and Wonder Woman.
She wore golden armor as an ode to the character, and an eagle on her helmet in place of the seal’s illustrated bird. Behind her, she carried an oversized state seal with an alternate design on the back: one that represents Oregon’s state animal, the beaver.
Cook, 27, is a clinical imaging specialist who works in operating rooms across the country. She has a degree in radiologic sciences and is an advocate for the Brain Injury Association of America.
For fun, she enjoys volleyball, refereeing basketball, and playing the electric violin.
Miss South Carolina Marley Stokes blossomed in a flowing yellow costume that paid tribute to her state flower.
Stokes’ bright-yellow bodysuit was adorned with chiffon petals to represent South Carolina’s yellow jasmine.
Stokes, 27, splits her time between working as a makeup artist and phlebotomist.
She also founded the “Crayons for Kids” program to help children “colorfully express themselves,” according to her Miss USA bio.
Miss South Dakota Caroline Pettey might bring you back to the Gold Rush, which took place in the 1800s.
But more specifically, her outfit was inspired by the city of Deadwood, South Dakota. Gold beading was used across its shoulder pads, while crystals and sequins covered her bodice and skirt. She also wore a matching headpiece and carried a gold lantern.
Pettey, 27, has a degree in broadcast journalism from Auburn University and is now a weeknight news anchor.
She’s also passionate about helping women who have faced domestic violence and has dreams of hiking the Appalachian Trail.
Miss Utah JessiKate Riley sparkled in a daring silver two-piece inspired by her state’s snowy weather.
Riley’s outfit came complete with a sky-high headpiece, furry gloves, a sheer skirt, and fringed bottoms to represent Utah’s slogan, “The Greatest Snow on Earth.”
Riley, 25, is a skilled musician and has been playing the violin since she was 3 years old.
She currently works as a model and motivational speaker.
Miss Vermont Joanna Nagle wore gold from head to toe in a costume that paid homage to her state’s love of hockey.
She wore bejeweled hockey gear to walk the Miss USA stage, along with metallic gold leggings and a matching cape.
Nagle, 27, has played ice hockey for more than 20 years in 13 different states.
She also coaches the sport and works as a search-engine marketing specialist.
Miss Virginia Christina Thompson wore red and black to mirror a cardinal, her state’s bird.
Her leotard, which had a deep neckline and daring cutouts, was covered in black beads. There were also red feathers across her shoulders and on the fans she held, representing the bird’s signature color and Thompson’s goal to reach her goals.
Thompson, 25, is an accomplished journalist who previously won a prestigious Edward R. Murrow award for her coverage of social-justice protests in 2020.
She’s also the creator of Purposeful Positions, a mentorship program that helps to create opportunities for women and children.
Miss Washington Christine Brodie dazzled in a bodysuit and cape inspired by the Pacific rhododendron flower.
Because there are more than 1,000 species within the flower’s genus, Brodie’s bodysuit was covered in just as many crystals and beads. Glitter, chiffon, and hand-painted flowers were also incorporated into the look.
Brodie, 26, is a first-generation Filipino American woman. She works in Amazon’s executive-recruiting department and promotes female leadership.
She’s also an avid traveler and enjoys spending as much time outdoors as possible.