She may be better known for her pulse-racing and titillating poses in countless magazines, but Leng Yein remains a level-headed person who prefers to be known as a “businesswoman”.
“Modelling is just a channel to meet new acquaintances and develop business prospects,” the busty 26-year-old from Kuantan – who runs a mamak
restaurant, among other things – tells Star Rev
in an interview.
She has an easy going personality and seconds into the interview, she is already talking like an old chum catching up on the latest happenings.
Leng Yein, a former Miss Pahang, has been modelling since she was 18 and credits the exposure for allowing her to become an ambassador and spokesperson for several brands and services.
She recently reached a new height in her modelling career by being the first Malaysian car queen to be featured at the recent Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) autoshow in Las Vegas and also Autocon USA in Los Angeles.
After making a splash at SEMA, Leng Yein says she has been booked to return for next year’s show.
“Although I have only 3 1/2 hours’ sleep every day on average, I loved the endless stream of events, photo shoots and speaking engagements,” she says.
“Many people thought I was Japanese or Korean because of my looks until I told them I came from Malaysia,” she says.
But it’s no secret that Leng Yein got help from plastic surgeons to enhance her looks, something that she has no inhibitions discussing.
She did, however, win pageants even before going under the knife.
Her first reconstruction was a simple nose job, followed by surgery on her breasts and dimples.
Leng Yein says the surgery was not to enlarge her breasts but to make them more perky.
Much later, she had her nose redone along with her chin and lips.
The final work was another job on her nose and lips along with her eyelids and corners for Bambi-like eyes.
“I like Andy Lau’s nose which is sharp,” she says.
“A number of Malaysians have undergone a bit of nip-and-tuck here and there but are shy to talk about it,” says the chatty Leng Yein.
She says there was no right or wrong in undergoing plastic surgery.
“Basically, it’s a bit like enhancing your looks – like putting on make-up, adding eyelash extensions or colouring your hair,” she says, adding that everyone needed to maintain a certain level of “attractiveness”.
“If you do not take care of your appearance, how would people want to get acquainted with you and discover the beautiful you inside? First impressions are important,” she says.
Looking good, Leng Yein says, also infuses a person with higher levels of confidence and self-esteem.
“I want people to remember me as a hard-working, daring and a go-getter although the current view among many men is that I am the busty model,” she laughs.
“I also want women to be strong and brave to take charge of their lives.
“They must be daring to realise their dreams,” she says.
Modelling is just one of her skills. Leng Yein is also a pianist and dancer.
Her husband is a businessman and they got married on Oct 10 last year (10.10.10) after he proposed to her on Sept 9, 2009 (09.09.09).
In her facebook page www.facebook.com/lengyein, she calls herself jiejie (“sister” in Mandarin) as she prefers to think of her followers as friends.
Leng Yein was very active in Friendster earlier with some 50,000 friends over several years before shifting to Facebook.
“When I moved to Facebook, my Friendster buddies followed me and I got thousands of followers instantly,” she said.
Her Facebook followers crossed the 113,000 mark recently and the base is still growing by some 100 to 300 new friends each week.
“I have to update my Facebook as regular as possible and this makes my iPhone the most important thing next to my laptop. Facebook is like a diary to me,” she says.
She recently changed her BMW 6 Series convertible to an oversized Hummer H3 sports utility after she saw a pink H3 when she was in Australia a few months ago.
She got a H3 with plenty of chrome on the wheel caps, bumpers, grille, towing eyelets and side steps among others but the car was in blue instead of her choice pink.
As the car would be an extension of Leng Yein’s identity, she had the entire vehicle stickered in pink by Tom’s Stickers, a company which specialises in automotive decals and full sticker wraps.
The company managed to get the H3 fully done in pink in two days.
“Respraying the H3 would take weeks and the car would not be ready by then for the event,” she says.
She says the H3 was quite easy to drive and park despite what many people think about its size.
Being huge, Leng Yein says the H3 gave her a sense of “empowerment”.
“I like to be independent and want all women to feel the same,” says Leng Yein who is now into events hosting and emceeing.
When not on jobs, Leng Yien would be at the Taj Corner, a mamak
restaurant in Plaza Prima Setapak, Kuala Lumpur which she set up in 2007.
“I decided to venture into the mamak restaurant business as set up costs were much lower compared to other types of eateries,” she says.
Early days of the business were not easy with a sudden intake freeze on foreign workers.
“I ended up having to pay rent for six months despite not having any workers to start the business.
“After the restaurant opened, we got raided by City Hall on the second day because of tables being placed on the five-foot way,” she laughs.