17 Most Gorgeous Miss America Dresses Of All-Time: Nia Franklin & More

The 2020 Miss America pageant is upon us, and we're looking back at some of the most stunning gowns that contestants have worn to the competition in years' past!

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Although the evening gown portion of the Miss America competition has been phased out in 2020, it was a major staple during the pageant for so many years. In 2020, as part of an initiative to make Miss America less about appearance, the contestants will initially walk the stage in their evening gowns, but the remainder of the competition will feature them in outfits of their choice. The ladies who make it to the ‘interview’ segment are urged to don outfits that they would wear to a job interview or to give a corporate presentation. Then, in the final round, those who make it can pick the outfit that they want to potentially be crowned Miss America in.

As we wait and see what stunning dresses the ladies step on stage with to start the 2020 competition, we’re looking back at some of the most gorgeous evening gowns over the years. The 2018 pageant winner, Cara Mund, looked like absolute perfection when she strutted across the stage in her black evening wear. The ensemble hugged Cara’s body perfectly, and stood out thanks to its long sheer train and embellished neckline. Before Cara, the 2017 pageant winner was Savvy Shields. She could not have looked more gorgeous as she stepped onstage in a strapless, black dress, which was the picture of elegance.

Meanwhile, 2016 winner, Betty Cantrell, took a bit of a different and more daring approach. She wore a two-piece ensemble for her evening gown competition, showing a bit of stomach between her white cropped top and high-waisted skirt. The mermaid style skirt hugged Betty in all the right places, and she looked like an absolute princess!

Click through the gallery above to check out these ladies and more of the most gorgeous Miss America gowns ever. Then, make sure to tune into the 2020 pageant on Dec. 19 at 8:00 p.m. on NBC.