In this edition, Top 10 of Malaysia presents, in no particular order, the top 10 most glamorous Asian models who redefine style and embody the essence of haute couture. Models, those exquisite vessels of elegance and allure, have long been the living canvas on which fashion evolves from mere concept to glorious expression. With each graceful stride and each captivating glance, they transport us into a world where style reigns supreme and conventions fade into the background. Whether it be strutting down a runway or splashed across some glossy pages, models bring to form the works of visionary designers – operating as harbingers of trends that are set to take over the world.
Ming Xi, also known as Xi Mengyao, stands as a prominent figure in the world of Asian modelling. A true trailblazer, Ming Xi’s modelling journey reached a significant milestone in 2011 when she made her debut at the Givenchy Haute Spring Show. She then went on to strut her stuff at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show for several years, showcasing her versatility and elegance on the runway. Collaborations with renowned designers like Michael Kors and Olivier Rousteing further solidified her status as one of Asia’s leading models. Now a firm fixture in the fashion world, she continues to captivate in the same way she did when she first burst onto the scene.
Sheena Liam, the Malaysian sensation, is known for being the winner of Asia’s Next Top Model Season 2. Her triumph on the show elevated her modelling career, earning her a place with prestigious agencies like Storm Model Management and Women/360 Models. Liam’s success encompasses both print and runway, her striking presence seeing her featured on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar Singapore and Malaysia as well as becoming the face of TRESemmé’s 2014 campaigns. Beyond modelling, Liam has starred in a music video for rapper Big Boi and is quite the artist too. Working under the name Times New Romance, Liam crafts intricate embroideries of feminine figures with loose braids flowing from the canvas.
Pooja Mor is an accomplished Indian fashion model known for her remarkable journey in the industry. Her breakthrough came with her debut at Louis Vuitton’s Cruise 2016 runway show in Palm Springs. Pooja’s modelling career took an unconventional route as she transitioned from university to the world of fashion. Originally from Gujarat, Pooja Mor won the Ahmedabad regional finals for Clean & Clear Ahmedabad Times Fresh Face in 2012. She then ventured into fashion modelling in Delhi, catching the attention of Elite Model Management through an Instagram post. Her fame soared when her catwalk fall at Givenchy’s Spring/Summer 2016 show in New York went viral.
Liu Wen holds a prominent position in the modelling world as China’s first supermodel. She has achieved numerous groundbreaking milestones, including being the first Chinese model to grace the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show runway and the inaugural East Asian spokesmodel for Estée Lauder cosmetics. Liu also secured her place in history by becoming the first Asian model featured on Forbes magazine’s list of highest-paid models. Her influence extended to the cover of American Vogue, where she became only the second Chinese model to feature on the cover and the first to be showcased on the front, rather than as a foldout.
Catriona Gray is a prominent Filipina model, singer, and beauty queen. She is best known for her victory as Miss Universe 2018, making her the fourth Filipina to clinch the prestigious title. Catriona’s journey to success began with her earlier triumphs as Miss Universe Philippines 2018 and Miss World Philippines 2016. Beyond the pageant stage, Gray is a passionate advocate for women’s rights, demonstrating her commitment through various initiatives. She has also played a significant role in preserving indigenous cultures and supporting the “One Town, One Product” project led by the Philippines’ Department of Trade and Industry. Despite facing pressure from military officials, Catriona Gray remains steadfast in her dedication to advancing women’s rights and her diverse advocacy work.
Soo Joo Park is an influential South Korean-American fashion model and musician. Renowned for her iconic platinum blonde hair, she made history by becoming the first Asian-American woman to serve as a L’Oréal spokesmodel. Soo Joo Park’s association with some of the world’s premier brands such as Chanel and Tom Ford have propelled her into the limelight. Her portfolio is impressive, having walked for renowned designers such as Vivienne Westwood, Emporio Armani and Fendi. In addition to her modelling accomplishments, Park has graced advertisements for esteemed brands including Michael Kors, MAC Cosmetics and Redken. She even opened the Chanel 2015/16 Cruise show as Karl Lagerfeld’s chosen muse representing Asia.
Fernanda Ly, hailing from Australia with Chinese-Vietnamese roots, has left an indelible mark in the fashion world. Discovered at a mall, she made a sensational debut as a Louis Vuitton exclusive, her distinct pink hair capturing immediate attention. Beyond the catwalk, Ly’s versatility is showcased on the covers of Vogue Australia, Teen Vogue, and Vogue Italia. Her face has graced numerous campaigns, including Kate Spade New York, Chanel Beauty, Dior and Tiffany & Co. A true modern influencer, she also manages a vibrant YouTube channel named Ferntube. Fernanda Ly’s story underscores her multicultural background, dynamic career, and innovative approach to the fashion industry.
Hailing from South Korea, Yoon Young Bae has definitely put her stamp on the modelling world. Her appearance on the “New Frontiers” cover of British Vogue alongside other luminaries showcased the influence she commands. Discovered by a Korean stylist, she entered the modelling world through the YGKPlus agency. Bae’s debut as a Prada exclusive and subsequent appearances for brands like Chanel, Valentino and Fenty x Puma solidified her presence. Her prolific runway outings led to notable campaigns for Diane von Fürstenberg, Zara, and Tory Burch. Consistently recognised, she earned a place among models.com’s “Top 50” and was highlighted as one of A/W 2018’s top models by British Vogue’s Rosie Vogel-Eades.
Margaret Zhang, an Australian-born-Chinese creative force, is known for her diverse roles in filmmaking, modelling, and fashion leadership. Beyond her role as the Editor in Chief of Vogue China, Zhang’s journey began with ballet and piano studies, which cultivated her fascination with fashion. While studying at the University of Sydney, she gained attention as a guest buyer for Matchesfashion during New York Fashion Week. Zhang’s multifaceted talents expanded to photography, styling, and creative direction for notable publications like L’Officiel and Harper’s Bazaar. Zhang’s modelling career has seen her become a front-row regular and a cover face for magazines like Elle and Nylon. CNN has acknowledged her as a leading fashion photographer in Asia, highlighting her multifaceted impact on the industry.
Du Juan is a multifaceted talent hailing from Shanghai, China, who has made her mark as an actress, model, and former ballet dancer. Notably, she holds the distinction of being the first and only East Asian model to grace the cover of Vogue Paris. Her record 18 appearances on the cover of Vogue China is a testament to her modelling pedigree. A former Ford Supermodel of the World runner-up, Du’s journey extended to some of fashion’s most prominent runways, including shows by Valentino, Jean-Paul Gaultier, and Chanel. She appears to be well on her way to similar success in acting too, debuting in the film “American Dreams in China,” earning accolades and nominations for her exceptional performance.
For a more regional read on supermodels, check out our article on the Top 10 Stunning South East Asian Models.