Nova Stevens vs Michael Cinco vs MGMode’s Migüel Martinez: Who’s the ungrateful, professional user?

The Michael Cinco gowns for Miss Universe Canada 2020 Nova Stevens, 26, arrived late and did not fit, according to Migüel Martinez of MGMode Communications. She was unplaced in Miss Universe 2020.

Martinez is a publicist. In the world of publicity, bad publicity is good publicity. This is not 100% accurate, however. If you are selling a product or are providing a service, bad publicity gives you a good opportunity to have your product or service be noticed. Attention does not force the attention giver to buy the product or avail of the service. Therefore, bad publicity can make you or break you.

This ongoing social media war between Cinco and Martinez can either make or break one or both of them. Cinco has already established a strong foundation in the fashion industry. Michael Cinco gowns are Michael Cinco gowns with or without Miss Universe. As for Martinez, this controversy is causing curious people to check who the heck he is and what on earth is MGMode Communications.

If you are a Miss Universe candidate or a contestant of any international beauty pageant, will you hire Martinez as your publicist? Would you want to be associated with him after this fight with Cinco? Would you want to be in Stevens’ situation?

To help you answer those questions, let’s compare Martinez and Cinco’s claims.


Martinez first complained about Cinco’s gowns on Instagram.

Martinez’s post on Instagram is no longer available. Cinco posted a screenshot of it. Here are the exact words (from the punctuations to the grammar errors) in case the screenshot also gets deleted:

The truth need to be told! The gown was sent late by Michael’s team, and when it arrived none of them fitted!

We were able to fixed the one for the finals but the one for prelims we didn’t have time. We went to Dubai 2 times, to prevent such mistake since it happen to us as well with Argentina’s gown last year @marianajvarela and Uruguay @fionatenutavanerio

Such a terrible mistake should not have happen! We love Michael! But this was inexplicable. At the same time they had time to custom made a gown for another delegate who checked in with her custom made Michael Cinco gown. Things don’t add up! sadly!


Cinco responded on Facebook.

Cinco was infuriated by Martinez’s complaints. Here is the Dubai-based Filipino designer’s lengthy response:


Martinez stood by his complaints.

In an interview with MJ Felipe of ABS-CBN News on May 24, 2021, Martinez responded to Cinco’s rant. Here are some quoted statements of Martinez from the interview and my reactions:

“The gowns arrived late and I did say that they didn’t fit properly because they didn’t and I did say that somehow they did find time to make gowns for other candidates.”

If both Cinco and Martinez are telling the truth, they apparently have different definitions of being on time. For Cinco, the gowns were not late because they arrived on May 11, 2021 and the Miss Universe 2020 preliminary competition happened on May 14, 2021 and the coronation night was on May 16, 2021. For Martinez, the gowns were late because they did not arrive before Stevens checked in the hotel in Miami, Florida, United States on May 7, 2021.

“Why do you have time for other people’s gowns when you have this huge commitment?” 

Did Martinez and Cinco sign a contract that prohibits Cinco from designing gowns for other Miss Universe 2020 candidates aside from Stevens? If there is no such contract, Martinez has zero right to complain about the fact that Cinco also designed gowns for Klára Vavrušková, 21, of Czech Republic, Bianca Lorena Tirsin, 22, of Romania and eventual winner Andrea Meza, 26, of Mexico.

“I love you. Sorry if I hurt you and those were some mean words, like really mean. Hopefully, we can mend this and if you want me to bring you an amazing girl next year and you’re willing to do it again, I’m willing to do it, too.”

A genuine apology is unconditional. You cannot sincerely apologize without acknowledging what you are apologizing for. A genuine apology does not contain phrases like “sorry if” and “I apologize if.”


Stevens responded on Instagram twice.

This controversy happened days before Stevens’ 27th birthday on May 25, 2021. She was born in 1993 in Kenya to South Sudanese parents and she moved to Canada in 1999.

Stevens released a video on May 22, 2021 addressing the issue in a very diplomatic way like how a typical beauty queen would. But on May 24, 2021, she released another statement, which gave a clearer understanding of what she thought about Cinco and Martinez’s feud. She did mention that both sides committed a mistake.

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