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Miss Universe WA top 24 finalists. Picture: Michael Wilson/The West Australian

Nerves were high and the competition was tough as 23 hopeful WA stunners worked the catwalk at the penultimate Miss Universe WA heats this week.

Family, friends and pageant sponsors spilled into the packed outdoor cinema set-up at Highgate's Luxe Bar on Tuesday night to cheer on the bevy of nervous beauties as they took to the stage to vie for a spot in the State finals.

But after much deliberation from the judges, which included WA designer Ruth Tarvydas, Cebiche swimwear founder Hayley Hardisty, Perth cosmetics queen Alison Jade and Troy Barbagallo, seven girls were plucked out of the heats to join this year's top 24 finalists.

After four months of physical and mental preparations, Anouska Freedman, Amy Celisano, Carli Panten, Holly Johnsen, Georgia Kelly, Alison Martin and Stephanie Wake will vie for their chance to compete on the national stage at the Miss Universe Australia finals later this year.

Freedman, who is also a Chadwick Perth model, said she was thrilled to advance to the next stage of the competition.

"I wasn't so sure I'd get through because the competition was so tough," an excited Freedman told AAA. "But I'm really proud of myself."

Sophia Barbagallo, who hosted the event along with former Miss Universe WA finalist Abbey Gelmi, said the strong batch of girls in Tuesday's heat gave her hope that WA could reclaim the Miss Universe Australia crown at the national finals later this year.

"Western Australia is full of incredible young women and this year's talent is no exception," she said. "We're really excited to take the girls to the next step and see where they go from there."

Clad in a sexy form-fitting black dress, there has been no slowing down for the busy mum-to-be, who has thrown herself into the hectic pageant schedule despite being five months pregnant.

"I'm blessed in that I've had a really good pregnancy, I'm feeling good," she said. "I love what I do for work, so I'm just focusing on that in the moment."