H'Hen Niê

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H'Hen Niê
H'Hen Niê at Vietnam International Fashion Week 2018.png
H'Hen Niê at 2018 Vietnam International Fashion Week
Born (1992-05-15) 15 May 1992 (age 28)
Alma materCollege of Foreign Economic Relations
Height1.73 m (5 ft 8 in)[1]
TitleMiss Universe Vietnam 2018
Timeless Beauty 2018 by Missosology
Beauty pageant titleholder
Hair colorBlack
Eye colorBrown
Major
competition(s)
Miss Universe Vietnam 2017
(Winner)
Miss Universe 2018
(Top 5)

H'Hen Niê (pronounced [həːhɛnnie] hə-HEN-nee-EH; born 15 May 1992) is a Vietnamese model and beauty pageant titleholder, who was crowned Miss Universe Vietnam 2018 after winning Hoa hậu Hoàn vũ Việt Nam 2017. She represented Vietnam at Miss Universe 2018 and finished in the Top 5.[2]

Early life[edit]

H'Hen was born in Đắk Lắk to parents Y'Krin Êban and H'Ngơn Niê and is from the Rade ethnic minority in Vietnam; she was raised speaking the Rade language, and did not learn Vietnamese until she was in eighth grade.[3] H'Hen is the third oldest out of six children, and in her youth, she worked on a coffee farm to assist her family. As per the Rade people's matrilineal customs, Rade women tend to start a family at a young age. However, H'Hen refused to follow this tradition and decided to continue her studies at her own expense.

After graduating from high school, H'Hen studied a year at Nha Trang National Ethnic Community College before moving to Ho Chi Minh City to study corporate finance at the College of Foreign Economic Relations. She worked as a domestic helper for a year to pay the bills while she was in college.[4] When H'Hen was working as an intern at a bank, she began considering a career in modelling.[5] In 2014, shortly after graduating from college, she was discovered by the Vietnamese designer Đỗ Mạnh Cường while attempting to begin a modelling career. As she gained interest in the industry, she auditioned for season 6 of Vietnam's Next Top Model in 2015, where she became a finalist. She ultimately placed ninth in the competition.[1]

Career[edit]

Pageantry[edit]

Miss Universe Vietnam 2017[edit]

H'Hen entered Miss Universe Vietnam in 2017. During her time at Miss Universe Vietnam, she was recognized for her short hair and tanned skin, a contrast to Vietnamese beauty standard.[6] In the finale, H'Hen Niê went on to win the competition, beating out first runner-up Hoàng Thùy and second runner-up Mâu Thị Thanh Thủy. Miss Universe 2008 Dayana Mendoza was a judge at the finale. When asked by a co-judge whom she would pick as the winner, Mendoza chose "the girl with short hair", which was H'Hen.[6]

As a Rade person, H'Hen Niê is currently the first and only Miss Universe Vietnam titleholder to be of an ethnic minority. In an interview, she revealed she had almost paid off all of her family's debts thanks to new opportunities after winning the competition.[7]

Miss Universe 2018[edit]

She represented Vietnam at Miss Universe 2018 in Bangkok, Thailand. In the months leading up to the pageant, H'Hen's training and preparation was documented and aired as a YouTube series called Road to Miss Universe 2018.[8]

The Miss Universe Vietnam Organization held a contest to find the Vietnamese national costume that H'Hen would wear for the national costume competition at the pageant. Six designs made it to the final round.[9] After a nationwide vote, the top three designs were selected: Bánh Mì (inspired by the Vietnamese sandwich bánh mì), Phố cổ (inspired by the ancient town of Hội An), and Ngũ hổ (inspired by the classical Hàng Trống painting and Vietnamese opera).[10] In the end, Bánh Mì was selected to be Vietnam's national costume at Miss Universe 2018.[11]

In the finale held at Impact Arena on December 17 in Bangkok, H'Hen finished as a top 5 finalist, the furthest any Vietnamese representative have made and only the second time since 2008 that Vietnam advanced through the first cut.[12] In her top 5 interview, H'Hen received a question about whether the #MeToo movement has gone too far, for which she answered:

“To me, it has not gone too far. Because protecting people’s well-being against sexual abuse, protecting women, that is a precious right. All of us need protection, our lives need freedom as well as protection.” [13]

Alternative translation:

“Personally I do not think that the #metoo movement has gone too far. It is because protecting human’s well-being and protecting women from sexual harassment are extremely fundamental rights. In life, we as human beings all need to be protected because it gives us the right of freedom. Thank you.” [14]

Post Miss Universe[edit]

She was selected as the winner of the 2018 Timeless Beauty Award by Missosology, the popular beauty pageant blog and magazine. She defeated 112 other women competing in different major beauty pageants in 2018. Timeless Beauty has been organized annually since 2010 as a tradition of Missosology to recognize a queen who best embodies beauty that will transcend time, “something that shall be remembered for all eternity."

While having moderate success prior to the pageant competition, H'Hen's modeling career significantly took off after she won Miss Universe Vietnam 2017. She became an ambassador for various brands and appeared on multiple magazine covers and editorial features. She has walked for fashion shows in Vietnam and overseas.

In July 2019, she joined Lệ Hằng, Vietnam's representative at Miss Universe 2016, to compete in season 6 of The Amazing Race Vietnam as the Yellow Team. The team eventually won the race and received a cash prize of 300 million VND (approximately 13,000 USD). They are both committed to use the prize for charity work.[15] She was the host of I Am Miss Universe Vietnam 2019, which premiered in October 2019. However, H'Hen had to halt her appearance in Miss Universe Vietnam 2019 due to health issues. She has denied rumors of conflict with the MUV organization or pregnancy, and continued to post about the competition on her personal social media.[16]

Philanthropy[edit]

Understanding her roots and past struggles, H'Hen believes education is a key to break out of poverty.[17] She initially committed to donate 70% of her prizes if she won the title of Miss Universe Vietnam. However, after her win, she listened to her mother's advice and gave away all of her cash prize worth of $10,000 to providing scholarships to students in her old schools after the competition.[18] She hoped her story could inspire young people to overcome their difficulties and continue to pursue education.[19] Under her Miss Universe Vietnam reign, H'Hen rallies for support for the unfortunate, the elderly as well as HIV/AIDS victims. She became a global ambassador for Room to Read in 2018, a non-profit organization focusing on providing resources for girls' education and literacy programs. As an ambassador, she has raised approximately $20,000 for a project to build a new library in Lam Dong and provide scholarships to girls in Asia and Africa so that they could complete secondary education and develop key life skills.[20][17] The library was inaugurated in October 2018, housing over 3500 titles for students at Bao Thuan Elementary School and the local community to use.[21] She received "Star for the Community" award at Star of the Year 2018 gala for her charity work in Vietnam. [22]

In February 2019, she spoke to 12,000 students at a conference organized by the Francis Padua Papica Foundation in Naga, Camarines Sur, the Philippines where she shared her stories and affirmed her stance on working hard and believing in oneself to overcome struggles.[23] A month later, H'Hen initiated a project that would provide clean water and street lights to people in her village. She hoped to complete the project before she ends her reign as Miss Universe Vietnam in late 2019.[24]

Filmography[edit]

Television series[edit]

Year Title Role Network Notes
2015 Vietnam's Next Top Model Herself VTV Season 6 contestant
2017 I Am Miss Universe Vietnam 2017 Herself VTV Contestant
2018 Road to Miss Universe 2018 Herself YouTube
2019 Road to Miss Universe 2019 Herself YouTube Guest appearance
2019 The Amazing Race Vietnam Herself VTV Season 6 contestant
2019 I Am Miss Universe Vietnam 2019 Herself VTV Host

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "H'Hen Nie - Pageant Planet". www.pageantplanet.com. Retrieved 2018-12-20.
  2. ^ "Cô gái Ê Đê H'Hen Niê đăng quang 'Hoa hậu Hoàn vũ Việt Nam 2017 - H'Hen Niê crowned Miss Universe Vietnam 2018". thanhnien.vn (in Vietnamese). 6 January 2018.
  3. ^ "H'Hen Niê từng làm giúp việc, nợ 4 triệu khi đi thi". Retrieved 2020-02-05.
  4. ^ "Cận cảnh nơi ở của gia đình Tân Hoa hậu Hoàn vũ H'Hen Niê". Soha.vn. Retrieved 31 October 2018.
  5. ^ "H'Hen Niê từng làm giúp việc, nợ 4 triệu khi đi thi". 24h.com.vn. Retrieved 31 October 2018.
  6. ^ a b Vân An. "H'Hen Niê - 'viên ngọc đen' gây tranh cãi về nhan sắc hoa hậu". VNExpress (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 31 October 2018.
  7. ^ Hà Thu. "H'Hen Niê: 'Tôi đã trả gần hết nợ cho bố mẹ'". VNExpress (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 31 October 2018.
  8. ^ "Series: H'Hen Niê - Road to Miss Universe 2018". YouTube. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  9. ^ Miss Universe Vietnam. "Vote for Top 6 Vietnam's National Costumes at Miss Universe 2018". YouTube. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  10. ^ Dạ Ly. "Công bố top 3 trang phục dân tộc cho H'Hen Niê tại Miss Universe". Thanh Niên (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  11. ^ "H'Hen Nie to showcase "Banh Mi" national costume at Miss Universe 2018". Voice of Vietnam. Retrieved 27 November 2018.
  12. ^ "Miss Universe 2018 - Pageant Planet". www.pageantplanet.com. Retrieved 2018-12-20.
  13. ^ "Top 5 Question time: Watch #MissUniverse Vietnam's answer". Miss Universe on Twitter. Retrieved 17 December 2018.
  14. ^ "Translation from Bùi Chi Mai Lê". YouTube. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
  15. ^ Nghiêm Ngọc. "H'Hen Niê và Lệ Hằng vô địch Cuộc đua kỳ thú 2019". Zing.vn. Retrieved 7 September 2019.
  16. ^ Thạch Anh. "H'Hen Niê về quê cắt lúa sau tuyên bố không đồng hành cùng 'Miss Universe Vietnam'". Thanh Niên Online (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 6 October 2019.
  17. ^ a b "H'Hen Niê fundraising page". Room to Read. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  18. ^ Miss Universe Vietnam. "H'Hen Niê về thăm quê hương trước ngày lên đường tham dự Miss Universe 2018". YouTube. Retrieved 3 December 2018.
  19. ^ Thúy Diễm. "Hoa hậu H'Hen Niê trích 70% tiền thưởng trao học bổng cho HS nghèo hiếu học". Dân Trí (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 31 October 2018.
  20. ^ "Miss Universe Vietnam H'Hen Niê Announces Philanthropic Commitment to Global Education as Room to Read Ambassador". Room to Read. Retrieved 31 October 2018.
  21. ^ Thien Minh. "Miss Universe Vietnam H'Hen Nie sponsors libraries for poor children". Public Security News. Retrieved 21 August 2019.
  22. ^ Quynh Nhu. "H'Hen Niê được trao giải 'Ngôi sao vì cộng đồng'". Ngoi Sao (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 21 August 2019.
  23. ^ "Miss Universe Vietnam H'hen Nie Speaks At 2019 Youth Conference". Miss Universe. Retrieved 21 August 2019.
  24. ^ Thu Huong. "H'Hen Niê muốn hoàn thành dự án nước sạch cho buôn làng, trước khi hết nhiệm kỳ hoa hậu". SGGP Online (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 21 August 2019.

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Thailand Maria Poonlertlarp
Venezuela Keysi Sayago
Miss Universe Top 5 Finalist
(with Puerto Rico Kiara Ortega)

2018
Succeeded by
Colombia Gabriela Tafur
Thailand Paweensuda Drouin
Preceded by
Nguyễn Thị Loan
Vietnam's representative at Miss Universe
2018
Succeeded by
Hoàng Thị Thùy
Preceded by
Phạm Hương
(Crowned)
Nguyễn Loan
(Appointed)
Miss Universe Vietnam
2017
Succeeded by
Hoàng Thùy
(Appointed)
Nguyễn Khánh Vân
(Crowned)