Arts, Culture & Lifestyle

Kathy Tan Her Lin, the 8-years-old child model star at Face of Asia Junior 2021

At just eight years old, Kathy Tan Her Lin is the very first Asian child model to receive the coveted Icon Award. Here, everything to know about the rising star.
Reading time 5 minutes

The annual Malaysia Fashion, Modeling and Pageant Awards 2020, held in conjunction with The Next Look of Selangor Fashion Week 2020 took place on January 7th at Grand Ion Delemen Hotel, Genting Highlands, Malaysia. There, rising star Kathy Tan Her Lin took home the Icon Award, the highest accolade achievable in Southeast Asia's child modelling industry.

The award was presented to her by the General Secretary of Tourism Malaysia, YB Tuan Hj Zulkifli. 

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Photo: Alexio Yeoh; Makeup & Hair: Pinky Chia; Style by Scarlett Pham

Known as the first Malaysian child model to grace the international catwalks of Vietnam Junior Fashion Week 2017 at just five years old, Kathy has gone on to win the titles of Tiny Princess Malaysia 2017 (Little Miss Malaysia) and Tiny Miss World 2018, Silver (Little Miss World).

She was the face of Junior Look Book Kuala Lumpur and has represented brands like Kenzo KidsEmilio Pucci Junior, Lanvin Paris Junior, Young Versace and Moschino Kids. She has also walked the runways at Malaysia Fashion Week 2018, Penang Fashion Week 2019, Selangor Fashion Week 2019, Barbie's 60th Anniversary Asia and more.

Having made her first magazine appearance at just two years old as the winner of Little Fashionista 2014 (Vietnam), Kathy went on to start modelling just two years later. After clinching the cash prize at  Top Vote 2016 Little Supermodel (Vietnam), she has appeared on several magazine front covers.

Some magazines in Kathy's repertoire include L'Officiel Kids (Europe Baltic), Harper Bazaar Kids (Brazil), ShangTime (Malaysia), FABUK Teen (UK London), Parenthoods (Malaysia) and more. 

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Asian Child Model Star Kathy Tan Her Lin

How did you start modelling and do you like it?

Mom loves to reminisce my childhood images and one of my first professional photoshoots was at 6 months old. My first appearance in a magazine was when I was 2 years old as the winner of the photo contest “Little Fashionista 2014” (Vietnam) and I started modelling at 4 years old after I won the cash prize "Top Vote 2016 Little Supermodel" (Vietnam).

I am happy to see myself appeared several magazines front covers in different languages. I cherish those printed magazines displayed on the bookshelf in my room and love to hang wall frames of these magazine shoots to decorate my room.


Known as the first Malaysian child model to walk at the 2017 Vietnam Junior Fashion Week at the age of 5, did you enjoy being on stage?

Mom sent me to the first model school Amber Chia Academy when I was 5. I was a very shy girl, but after experiencing the international stage of Vietnam Junior Fashion Week, I gained a lot of confidence.

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Asian Child Model Star Kathy Tan Her Lin

Besides modelling, what else is your hobby?

Besides modelling photoshoots and catwalks, I love playing the piano, singing, K-Pop dance, Latin dance, swimming mermaid, junior golf, badminton, drawing, playing Lego, playing puzzles and reading books… This long list so far remains smooth for weekend activities (laughs).

At 6 years old, I gained an Olympia Laurel Gold Medal for singing talent at Little Miss World 2018 in Greece, from 7 years old sing and act and starring in some music videos (MV) covers produced by my mother: A Million Dreams, Girl On Fire, Xue Mao Jiao, You Belong With Me. I love travelling very much. I love my family.


Do you think your achievement has influenced others?

In 2020, I was invited to be a part of celebrities and influencers on GuestStar.Asia (Singapore). Mom manages all my social media. Mom said that going to school is most important and all other activities are just to enrich our life experience. I try to be a better daughter. I still keep exploring and learning new things and I will know how far I go when I reach a mature age.

I would like to thank my best mom because she always cared for and loved me when I was a little baby. She always advises me to try good things and encouraging me to do them better.

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Tiny Miss World 2018 & Little Icon 2020 Kathy Tan Her Lin

Shot & Style: Alexio Yeoh @alexioyeoh
Makeup Hairdo: Makeup Miracle @moon_makeupmiracle @makeup_miracle
Dress: BHEART Haute Couture @bheart_official
Shooting Location: Shangri-La Kuala Lumpur @shangrilakl



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