For episode #313 we are honored to feature Masuimi Max, who is one of the top fetish models and burlesque performers of all time. Born of a Korean mother and a German father, her life was anything but ordinary. We speak about her makeup line, films, performing and more!
Do you get into a different creative mindset when you’re behind the camera representing a company like Lucky 13 Apparel? Do you approach company modeling any different than when you perform on stage?
Yes! I consider the theme of the project and what would be appropriate. For instance pinup modeling features more classic posing and fetish modeling has more attitude. Being on stage is completely different from doing a photoshoot. With a photoshoot the audience sees the final product.. when you are on stage, they see everything. There are some models that take gorgeous pics, but are really uncomfortable with their bodies or posing in general. This is something you may never find out because you only see the final image. If you are on stage performing, you have to be 100% comfortable with yourself and be fluid.. you are posing on stage, but flowing to the next move, and generating an audience reaction. When I do a photoshoot, a bit of my stage comfort is with me.. I guess once you’re comfortable being semi-naked on stage, posing for a still image is a piece of cake.
From Cherry Wine Lipliner to a variety of loose dust, your make-up line “I Am Sin’ seems to offer lots of unique choices for ladies. Why did you decide to start a line of make-up? Were you finding it hard to locate make-up that suited your style prior to deciding to launch your own company?
My best friend and business partner, Laura Byrnes, strongly suggested it! She knew how much I love creating different makeup looks – and being Asian it wasn’t easy to find certain products that suit my skin tone, or even makeup tutorials geared towards almond eyes and big giant cheeks (me, lol). Lot’s of girls email to find out what I am using in my photoshoots, so instead of promote another line, I decided to create my own. Which doesn’t just stop at the makeup, I designed the website http://iamsin.com to showcase models of all colors, shapes and sizes in photos and video demos. Creating the makeup line wasn’t the final goal for I AM SIN, there’s so much more.
You also stated you had to ‘revamp’ the make-up line. Did you run into some difficulty initially launching the products? I know you don’t simply brand your name on your products, you actually have a hand in creating it.
It was done for business reasons. The original line was called I AM TROUBLE, which is my adult website. I didn’t want search engines to get confused. Now when someone searches for my makeup line they don’t find my boobs. Or at least they shouldn’t [laughs]! Plus, I AM SIN is short and sweet.
Tell us a bit about the new cruelty free makeup line! What new products will you introduce in 2014?
Aw.. I can’t tell you what’s new, it wouldn’t be a surprise! But I can tell you that new products will be introduced throughout the year. Also, I AM SIN is certified Cruelty-Free by PETA. We don’t test on animals, we test on ME.
In your opinion, what is the difference between burlesque, fetish performing and striptease?
I’ve always thought burlesque was striptease with comedy.. that’s how I do my shows! I always get laughs and cheers at my shows, I like an energetic crowd! Fetish performing can be like burlesque, and it can be its own thing.. like a fetish show can be a performance will being suspended with hooks.
You’re a dancer. You’re an actress. You’re a webmaster. You’re a model. Any other professional aspirations?
I do have a few more aspirations, but I don’t generally announce them till they are ready to announce. I feel like it would jinx it!
You’ve acted in Unlucky Charms, and most recently Gingerdead Man vs. Evil Bong. Do you gravitate towards the horror genre? Do you see yourself being the next Julie Strain?
It was really exciting working with Charles Band, his movies are classics! I think I gravitate towards anything fantasy related, which would be sci-fi, horror.. A lot of horror films have monsters or magical creatures, like in Unlucky Charms! I don’t think I would ever be in a drama or.. hmm, I was going to say mainstream movie, but I had a small cameo in State of the Union. Oh, and I was in Inland Empire by David Lynch, I think that was drama.
What are your own personal favorite Asian films?
Battle Royale. I could not believe my eyes when I watched this film.. after I read Hunger Games. I really liked Hunger Games until I saw Battle Royale and realized what came first. The original is one of my favorite films! Enter the Dragon: Bruce Lee kicking ass of course! I like Kung-fu movies!
When you were first starting out did you have any trouble in the alt modeling scene performing as an Asian woman? Was your ethnicity ever a roadblock you had to overcome?
There wasn’t an Alt modeling scene when I started and being Asian hasn’t (to my knowledge) hindered my career in any way.. although, I had problems with the other models when I started because of my tattoos! The very first runway job I was hired for was in 1996, the models were very conventional looking then, no tattoos allowed. When I showed up the girls all glared at me and huddled together. Oh, and my black hair and bubble butt were not considered attractive features as they are now, so I was an outcast because of that. But, I was still getting the jobs… and those girls are now getting tattooed. Irony. It is really nice to be able to walk around nowadays without people touching my tattoos and asking if they are real. They have become a part of our everyday culture now, fueled by T.V. shows and magazines dedicated to tattoos.
Lastly, any advice to young women who might be struggling with self confidence?
Yes. Believe in yourself, that you are capable of doing anything you set your mind to. Accept yourself and work on things you feel you need fixing. Self confidence is attractive. If you are not feeling confident because you don’t like something physical about yourself stop obsessing! No one is perfect and if you think they are now, they won’t be forever.. and they don’t like something about themselves. There is so much to a person, work on your insides and the rest will come. Just remember, a lot of people struggle with this, be kind to others no matter what level of confidence you have. The butterfly effect can be a beautiful thing.
One more thing.. If you complain about celebrities, forget them. Instead of reading about their latest antic so you can complain about it, focus on someone that makes you happy and has a story that inspires you.
Want to stay up to date on all things Masuimi? Follow her cookie crumb trail below and her official website is now has a translator.. you can translate it into 35 languages, including Japanese!