After a number of changes to dates for the national final, the contest finally took place on 8 March 2009, where 14 songs competed to represent Ukraine at Eurovision 2009 in Moscow, Russia. The final winner was Svitlana Loboda with "Be My Valentine".
The selection process began with an open call for songs by NTU for the contest, with a deadline for entries set at 16 January. After this deadline, the original plan was for the broadcaster to assemble a seven-person jury to access the entries. Between 21 and 23 January, this jury would have selected 30 songs to perform in an untelevised semi-final, to be held on 1 February behind closed doors. From these 30 songs, 15 of them were to qualify for a televised final to be held on 22 February 2009.
On 20 January, a total of 63 entries were submitted to NTU. However, changes to the format for the contest were announced at the same time. Two semi-finals were to be held on 7 and 8 February, featuring 20 songs in total, possibly held at the Sports Palace in Kiev, where the 2005 Eurovision was held. This was yet again changed on 21 January, where it was revealed that now only one semi-final will be held on 8 February, which will not be held at the Sports Palace.
The semi-final was held internally by NTU to select 15 entries to compete in the final. After the semi-final, it was reported that the performer Anastasiya Prykhodko and her manager claimed that neither the National Television Company of Ukraine (NTCU) nor the National Jury had used trustworthy methods to choose the contestants for the final. Prykhodko's interpretation of the rules was that in the semi-final, she had been entitled to perform something different from their Eurovision entry song. In fact, Paragraph 4.3 of the Rules of Eurovision Song Competition issued by the NCTU on 31 October 2008 stated literally:"On 8 February 2009 on the improvised stage set in the NTVU studios, the 30 semi-finalists perform their competition songs live." On the grounds of the paragraph, the Jury disqualified Pryhodko for performing a song from her repertoire of the times of the Star Factory TV show called "Vsyo dlya tebya". The national final, to be held on 8 March, was temporarily suspended by a national arbitration committee due to the protest filed by Prykhodko. However, the national final went ahead on 8 March at the Ukraina Palace in Kiev, where the winner was decided by a 50/50 mix of jury vote and public televote. Prykhodko later entered the Russian national final on 7 March, winning with "Mamo" and represented Russia at the contest.
After winning the national final, Svitlana released the promotional video for "Be My Valentine! (Anti-Crisis Girl)", which will be shown around Europe before the contest.
Svitlana performed with a number of other entries in the 2009 contest at two international events: on 17 April the Ukrainian entry performed at the UKEurovision Preview Party at the Scala in London; she also performed on 18 April at the Eurovision Promo Concert in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, along with entries from 22 other countries.
Despite Ani Lorak coming second in the final of the 2008 contest, Ukraine will have to compete in the second semi-final of the contest on 14 May 2009. Svitlana will perform 17th in the running order of the semi-final, following Albania and preceding Estonia.
Svitlana released news on her performance at Eurovision that she would perform on stage with a large mechanical device known as the "Hell Machine", appearing somewhat like a cog. The device would descend and rotate from the top of the stage, and to be accompanied by embedded lights.
The song qualified for the final where it finished 12th with 76 points.