Nymphia Wind Crowned Winner of RuPaul's Drag Race Season 16

Taiwanese American drag queen Nymphia Wind makes history as the first Taiwanese winner of RuPaul's Drag Race, inspiring the Asian community and showcasing the rich diversity in drag.

Salman Akhtar
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Nymphia Wind Crowned Winner of RuPaul's Drag Race Season 16

Nymphia Wind Crowned Winner of RuPaul's Drag Race Season 16

Nymphia Wind, a Taiwanese American drag queen, has been crowned the winner of RuPaul's Drag Race Season 16, becoming the first Taiwanese queen and the third Asian/Pacific Islander to win the title in the main US franchise. Wind beat out fellow finalists Plane Jane and Sapphira Cristál in the final lip sync to Kylie Minogue's "Padam Padam" to claim the crown, a one-year supply of Anastasia Beverly Hills Cosmetics, and a $200,000 prize.

Wind, known for her love of the color yellow and bananas, as well as her couture-like design talent, expressed that her win is not just for her but for the entire Asian community. "Asians aren't in, and we're gonna have a very beautiful reign with me as a queen," Wind said. "To those who feel like they don't belong, just remember to live fearlessly and have courage to live your truth. And Taiwan, this is for you!"

Born in Los Angeles and raised between Taipei, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, Wind moved to Brooklyn, New York, in 2022 to grow her drag career. Throughout the season, she incorporated elements of her Asian heritage into her performances, including a traditional Asian sleeve dance and self-made designs celebrating Butoh and Lunar New Year. Wind revealed that she struggled with Western beauty standards growing up in Taiwan and turned to makeup and drag as a way to escape her face and appearance.

Why this matters: Nymphia Wind's historic win on RuPaul's Drag Race represents a significant milestone for Asian representation in the drag community and mainstream media. Her victory showcases the rich cultural diversity within the art form of drag and inspires aspiring queens from all backgrounds to embrace their unique identities.

Nymphia had an impressive track record on the show, never landing in the bottom three, a feat achieved by only a handful of previous winners. The season was considered an exciting and well-regarded one, with multiple strong contenders for the crown. The finale also saw a tie for the Miss Congeniality award, with both Xunami Muse and Sapphira Cristal receiving the $10,000 prize. RuPaul's Drag Race has been airing since 2009 and has won 30 Emmy Awards, with RuPaul being named outstanding host for eight consecutive years.

Key Takeaways

  • Nymphia Wind, a Taiwanese American, wins RuPaul's Drag Race Season 16.
  • Wind is the first Taiwanese queen and third Asian/Pacific Islander winner.
  • Wind incorporated Asian heritage into her performances and overcame Western beauty standards.
  • Wind's win is a milestone for Asian representation in the drag community.
  • RuPaul's Drag Race has won 30 Emmy Awards, with RuPaul as host for 8 years.