The Story of Anastasia Lin: The Pain of Beauty

Anastasia Lin Miss World Canada 2015

It has been said that beauty is painful. But no one would know that better than the former beauty pageant contestant herself, Anastasia Lin. Fancy hairdo’s, high-heels, glamorous make-up, and the works are just the tip of the iceberg for the beauty pageant scene. This fast-paced environment would be intimidating for anyone, but not for Lin. She owned it. An unprecedented journey, Anastasia’s road to winning Miss World Canada 2015 crowned her not only as a beauty queen but as a revolutionary human rights advocate. This summer Vision Films has released Bada** The Beauty Queen: The Story of Anastasia Lin; the riveting documentary will give viewers the opportunity to follow Lin’s journey to activism.

The Story of Anastasia Lin: From Communism to Human Rights

Born in Hunan, China in 1990, Lin quickly joined the Communist Party regime. She was a pint-sized Communist advocate, proudly mimicking China’s political authorities’ stance on Falun Gong; a Chinese religious practice that Lin would eventually defend. By the age of 13, she and her mother relocated to Vancouver, Canada. As a university professor, Lin’s mother exposed Lin to a world beyond the centralized communist views of the state. Lin became aware of heinous acts such as the Tiananmen Massacre and Falun Gong persecution; both examples of human rights stripped by means of torture and death. 

Anastasia Lin and her parents

Western education, along with her mother’s eye-opening stories, led Lin down the path to her greatest calling; human rights advocate. She had been acting since the age of 7, participating in beauty pageants as a young adult. But, nothing had quite captured her heart as ensuring religious freedom for the Chinese people. Her platform had only aided in exposing the cruel and inhumane tactics of the Chinese government. However, advocating for Falun Gong practitioners, and defending Chinese human rights came at a steep cost.

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The Price of Controversial Advocacy

anastasia lin on train

It wasn’t until Miss World 2015, that Lin discovered she would not be allowed entrance into China to compete in the pageant. Chinese officials had declared her persona non grata, meaning an unwelcome or prohibited person by the country’s government. Her denied entrance quickly gained global attention and ignited further conversation of China’s totalitarian approach to opposing beliefs. Their attempt to silence her only reinforced her message and expanded her platform. Denying her entrance into the country, paled in comparison to the threats her father received as a result of his daughter’s activism. Lin had every reason to leave activism behind, but she continued through the controversy. She used every outlet to bring light to the injustices that existed within China, included her acting in film. 

Anastasia Lin gown fitting

The True Beauty of Anastasia Lin

Anastasia Lin is not just a beauty queen with a great speech, she lives what she preaches. She is a prototype to young girls that the essence of their beauty is determined by their courage.

Anastasia Lin at podium

Lin will remain in history as more than just a pretty face, her beautiful heart that unselfishly puts others first will certainly rein her legacy. Lin made beauty about changing the world and making a better life for the oppressed. Now, young future pageant participants will understand that beauty is more than aesthetics. She is a revolutionary icon, a human rights advocate, a beauty queen, and a beautiful heart known affectionately as Miss World Canada.

Check out Baddass Beauty Queen!

Words by Jada Ledbetter

Photos Courtesy of Anastasia Lin & Badass Beauty Queen


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