Elizabeth Nguyen: I Aspire to Inspire! How a Humble Asian American Girl Rose To Fame – Maxim Magazine Model and 2x Gold Figure Skater

12 Mins read

Elizabeth is a multi-talented fashion model and popular social media influencer. From a humble upbringing, the former competitive figure skater is a 5x US National Competitor and gained the esteemed title of Double Gold Medallist. In 2019, her story won of the hearts of hundreds of thousands of fans that allowed her to win a competition that had over 50,000 ladies and won the title of “Maxim Magazine Cover Girl”. This victory came with a priceless crown and $25,000 prize money. Not to sit on her laurels, Nguyen decided to represent the region in California that supported her growth which led her to winning the title of Miss Balboa Orange County in 2020. She continues to talk more about her upbringing and the details of how she rose to fame to inspire others. We just interviewed Elizabeth and she explains her upbringing and successes.

Elizabeth Nguyen:

My childhood life growing up was not your typical one. I am grateful to have grown up with both of my parents that I adore so greatly. They were both refugees that escaped from the Vietnam War with goals to seek refuge in America to start a better life. Their story is a tragic one where they lost close family members and friends as they had to overcome impossible odds in order to escape through the jungle. They travelled by hand-paddled canoe boats and waited months to be rescued. I vividly remember the stories they told me of their courageous journey for survival. They had to collect cans like scrap metal and sell grapes on the streets to gain any amount of money. My parents will be my life-long role models, and I am so proud of them for being who they are now. Lastly, without them, I wouldn’t be alive! After they met in California and started a family, they wanted to make sure their children didn’t have to face these hardships growing up. Their goal was to give their children the best life they possibly can with what they’ve built up for themselves. Since they care and love me so much, this typically means they enrolled me in as many activities and extracurriculars as possible! I remembered learning all sorts of different activities in my younger years – from playing the piano, the violin, ballet, figure skating, gymnastics, tennis, swimming, track & field, and so much more! I was extremely preoccupied as a child growing up. My insane schedules, which started at the age of 6, roughly goes like this: I woke up at 3:00AM every morning to go to the rink for figure skating practice. Yes, I woke up at 3:00AM every morning! You can call me “insane” but for me, this was called “dedication.” I would attend the early morning skating sessions for at least 2 hours. After practice, I would head straight to school and would have to change to normal clothes in the car. I went to public school so my practices revolved around my school times. I was a scholar student growing up with stellar straight A’s and a consistent 4.0 GPA. You can definitely call me a nerd! My favourite subjects would have to be math and science. I can ramble forever about the cell biology and the functions of cells. I honestly like being called a “nerd.” I want to embrace this term and use it as a positive connotation! A “nerd” is basically a person who is seen as overly intellectual, so why would we need to be ashamed of that! We need to simply embrace who we are because I believe learning to love yourself a bit more every day and learning to forgive yourself are huge components to self-improvement. After school, I would head straight back to the figure skating rink for another 2-3 hours. I remember having to do my homework during my recess breaks and finishing them in the car on the way to practice. After the rink, I would either go to ballet, gymnastics, off-ice training, piano lessons, or any other appointments planned that day. I would finish my day, go to bed around 08:00PM, and would repeat again the next morning at 3:00AM. My life repeated like this until the age of 18. Now looking back, a 6-year old girl with these extreme schedules was considered very normal to me.

Even if some may argue that my childhood was sort of taken away from me, I do not regret it one bit! My upbringing has naturally given me self-discipline, my competitive nature, and has given me a determination towards my ambitions at an early age. Throughout my competitive figure skating years, I have won and earned the title of U.S. Figure Skating Double Gold Medallist in both the USFS Free Skate and USFS Moves in the Field Tests. I am a five-time U.S. national competitor and have travelled to almost all of the 50 US states, as well as, competed in a few international countries. I also received the Kennard Taylor Trophy award for the most outstanding performance of the competition. I absolutely love figure skating! To be honest, it’s the toughest sport I’ve ever learned, physically and mentally. Manoeuvring a growth spurt and having injuries were extremely common within the sport. I remember always having to relearn my technique again whenever there was a setback. Even skipping a day of practice would make my body feel foreign the next day, so just imagine having an injury and you had to skip practice for several months! Having the willpower to come back to the rink and to relearn the techniques is the toughest challenges for all figure skaters. I am so thankful to have accomplished all of my wins in figure skating with only minor injuries. This sport allowed me to use it as an escape to be myself whenever I hit the skating rink. I was free to be me and to be as creative and as artistic as possible! I simply can’t explain this unique feeling. I love it! Many might not think of this, but I was actually extremely shy growing up. I have matured and have found my own personality, which is clearly the complete opposite from my timid past. When I was little, I was shy but was also Miss Popular since I would beat out all of the boys and girls during PE class! These past times are so funny to remember and to look back on. After figure skating, I was on the path towards becoming a dermatologist or a pharmacist! I studied in college with a major in biochemistry. The background of my family is quite impressive. My uncles, cousins, and siblings are all within the medical field. One of my uncles is an ER doctor, another uncle is an ER nurse, my oldest brother is a pharmacist in Hollywood, many of my cousins are dentists, another cousin is a dermatologist, and my little sister is studying to be a doctor! I know, it sounds quite intense but this is my amazing family. I am so proud and beyond honoured to share the professions of them. I’m so extremely proud of them, even though they might not know it. I’m a huge bragger, can you tell?! I’m just so amazed! During college, I met my amazing pageant coach who introduced me into beauty pageants. I realized that school will always be there for me but my youth will not. I didn’t want to live in regret and miss a huge opportunity. I listened to my instincts and decided to train for the Miss Orange County California Beauty Pageant. I’ve learned so much and have mastered my runway walk! I’m only 5’6” so you could consider me on the petite side when it comes to modelling and runways. I want to represent my shorter gals! We are all beautiful in our own ways and height should not be a factor! Embracing, encouraging, and representing my generation is what I believe I am put on this Earth to do! I trained and won the title of Miss Orange Country Balboa Island! Under my crown, I opened the Fourth of July Parade in Anaheim California, I’ve taught elementary students’ etiquette and manners, and hosted weekly beach clean-ups. Pageantry expanded my interest in modelling due to my love for expressing myself through imagery during my many, many photoshoots. One afternoon on the way to skating practice, I quickly signed up to enter a Maxim Magazine Cover competition. I signed up on a whim, not expecting much at all. A few days later, I received a text saying that I have been chosen as a model to compete in the running of the next Maxim Cover Girl! I actually kept this as a secret at first, not knowing if this competition was legitimate or not. I was sceptical! This was a popularity voting contest from the public to choose the winner. A few months passed by, people were voting, and I advanced to the quarterfinals without paying too much attention. I later realized this was the real deal so I had to share the news to my all of family, friends, and to my Instagram followers! I had my whole city and social media support on my side voting for me which lasted for an intense 8 months. The competition went through a series of rounds. From over 50,000 beautiful models to 10,000 models. After 12 intense rounds later, the competition was down to two models left. Whether I won or lost, I told myself that I would be happy with any outcome. The last voting completed and I am beyond grateful to have rose to the top of over 50,000 gorgeous women who entered the Maxim Magazine Cover Girl competition. I won the crown of the being the cover model and was rewarded the $25,000 prize money! Winning this has been the most memorable accomplishment that has happened to me so far. I became the first Asian American model to ever be on the cover of Maxim Magazine which sold out internationally. The Maxim Super Bowl and Red-Carpet Party was hosted in Orlando, Florida in honour of my cover win! This night was definitely one to remember. I found my passion for modelling right after. I was reached out by 2 managers and also got signed by 2 incredible modelling/acting talent agencies. I have modelled for Nyx Makeup, L’Oréal Cosmetics, numerous fashion designers, many boutique designers, Comic Con LA, Amazon TV, and walked in many fashion runways shows. I am forever placed in the Maxim Magazine Hall of Fame to motivate the future generations of aspiring models. I have guest starred in interviews, podcasts, and represented for Remi Martin in their Red-Carpet Events. One of my favourite bookings would definitely have to be my work for American Horror Stories Season 2 for FX Network/Hulu. I can’t express how talented and professional everyone was on set. The professionals had the most insane but brilliant ideas! I was chosen as the American Horror Stories Cover Art and had 2 huge billboards in Los Angeles and in Hollywood, Sunset Strip! My cover art was available to fans internationally. My work was plastered in New York Times Square and was projected all over San Diego Comic Con. I was seen on the side of busses, the bus stops, the taxi cabs, all over the web, and all-over social media. Thank you so much team, if you’re reading this. We’ve created amazing memories together that I will never forget. Working with AHS FX Networks was the most unique and coolest weeks of my life! It was my first time wearing a bald cap, and I ended up wearing it 5 times in a span of the same week. The special effects makeup took a long time to complete, but was so worth it to achieve the final results. I was recently spotted in a prankster’s YouTube channel. I happened to be the chosen victim who was given the ultimate test whether I was a gold digger or not. This took me by surprise! It was the most bizarre but most memorable thing that happened to me so far this year. The video was just released last week and you can check it out below.


The video posted on LondonsWay’s YouTube channel started to gain popularity. I was astonished

by all the loving comments and support for me! Here are a few comments that stood out to


Person 1: “This girl gives me hope in humanity”

Person 2: “Shout out to your parents for raising you. Women like you are hard to come by and I

wish you nothing but happiness with a mindset like that.”

Person 3: “She is smart, beautiful, and has values in herself! She’s a sweet and petite figure Skater!  

She’s a keeper! She just gained a new follower on IG!” 

Person 4: “She’s definitely my type, I love women like this. She is not promiscuous. She’s

respectable with morals and integrity.”

Person 5: “You’re one of kind women”

Person 6: “You’re a gem”

Person 7: “You are really special, beautiful in every way possible. Someone will be a very lucky


Person 8: “She’s a rare diamond, she’s different. I like her”

Person 9: “She’s very down to earth, wow you just hit a jackpot”

Person 10: “You just encountered a 1 in 8 billion”

Person 11: “She’s super fine and she’s a vibe. Very cool women.”

Person 12: “She’s a genuine girl”

Person 13: “This is the first time I have ever encountered such a kind personality, Elizabeth.

You’re something else indeed”

My Instagram account @elizabethnguyen_official was filled with insane amounts of love,

support, and positive messages!

-Instagram link: https://www.instagram.com/elizabethnguyen_official/

I was speechless by the number of amazing messages I was receiving. I was just being my authentic self and have never felt this appreciated for being me! Thank you so much for reaching out if you sent me a nice comment. I read every single message, and I will never take you all for granted! Ever! I am a person that always wants to keep improving and my curiosity to learn as many things as in my life is endless. A few of my current hobbies have been stage combat fighting, cooking, baking, video editing, designing, film directing, and my business interests. Growing up with an active and competitive background, stage combat training has been nothing but fun! So please don’t mess with me because I know how to fight, just kidding! In the kitchen, I can literally cook anything! My mom calls me a magician in the kitchen! I can cook lasagnas, pasta, the whole Thanksgiving dinner, Asian dishes, and many more cuisines. My favourite to cook and eat would definitely have to be Vietnamese food. I’m a Vietnamese girl so what can I say?! Some of the foods include Vietnamese BBQ, noodle soups, spring rolls, and so much more. I also love baking fresh breads and baking desserts: brownies, pies from scratch, homemade cookies, fresh bread, you can name it and I can make it! I love creating my own smoothies, and açai bowls, and making homemade Boba drinks. I’m also very good at making cocktails and alcoholic beverages, even though I DO NOT drink! I simply like making these for others and seeing them enjoying it!

Check out Elizabeth’s Combat Fighting here:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=VHuLG88EX-w (https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=VHuLG88EX

w) People get shocked when I tell them that I have never had a boyfriend. I have never been on a date, I do not drink, I do not smoke, and I’m not a partying type of gal. From what I’ve been told, I look like a spoiled party girl because of my external looks: the way I dress, my makeup, and my bubbly outgoing personality, but I am basically the complete opposite of who people think I am. I’m known as a super friendly, beautiful porcelain doll with the kindest soul on Instagram. I just want to spread kindness and to inspire others to be happier. I understand that it’s a luxury for me to have had an incredible family upbringing so this is one reason why I want to share my life to my followers. On my Instagram, I like to show the behind-the-scenes of my work as a signed model/actress in Los Angeles, my family and friend life, and my travel experiences! Social media can be viewed negatively because it’s easy to compare yourself to others and this causes you to feel down on your life. For, I like to think of social media differently. I live by a jealous-free mindset and I become the biggest cheerleader to those who do succeed! I want to spread my positive energy and my quirky personality to others. I like to collect every memory, whether it’s good or bad, and turn it positive to keep improving myself. I believe hard work definitely pays off if you are doing it correctly and have ambitions. As an Asian-American in the entertainment industry with a growing social media presence, I want more Asian Representation for my peers. I am so honoured to be a face for this community as a Vietnamese American and want to contribute so much more to my people. AsianAmericans still remain largely unseen in film and television and I want to change that! Being able to have a reality television show of my life, being on Bling Empire, or being the next potential Bachelorette sounds intriguing to me! During my days, I’m typically working and busy with my international business that my brother and I have started together. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial mindset and just want to keep exploring more! At the end of the day, my goal is to simply inspire others by my lifestyle and achievements. I like to say, “I aspire to inspire”! I’m just 23 but I feel blessed to have been given the opportunity to achieve everything so far. Now, I hope I just inspired you to go after your goals so please do it now! It’s now or never. Love, Elizabeth xoxo

Read more and catch up with Elizabeth Nguyen!

https://linkr.bio/ElizabethNguyen?fbclid=PAAaZsG0HQYNkg681gNrOdmzvUVotFY- 3vEd7aBgUareq6BOuUwqqa6iF5FvI




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DN News Desk is the editorial wing of Digital Nod, an award-winning digital PR & marketing agency. Committed to delivering timely and insightful news coverage of global events, DN News Desk's team of seasoned journalists and editors ensures that readers are well-informed about the latest developments across various domains. With a finger on the pulse of current affairs, DN News Desk strives to provide accurate, balanced, and thought-provoking articles that shed light on the ever-evolving global landscape. From breaking news to in-depth features, DN News Desk's contributions aim to empower readers with knowledge and perspectives that matter.
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