The Incredible Story Of Muscle Barbie: The Doll Faced Bodybuilder

For some reason or another there seems to be a stigma around bodybuilding, it is that only men can look good with an insane muscular physique. There is also a misconception that women who have huge muscles and can out lift men, can’t be pretty or ‘girly’

With that in mind, meet Julia Vins a 21-year-old girl from a small town in Russia who thanks to her incredible training and gorgeous face has recently been given the nickname, “Muscle Barbie.”

By looking at some of her photos you can understand why people have been quick to give her that nickname. But how has she managed to become such an internet sensation, but more importantly how does she get that physique?

Find out in this article how she has completed an incredible transformation.

Starting Young

Born in Engels, Russia, Julia was just 15 years old, Julia started going to the gym with the pure intention of keeping fit, but after meeting a trainer who was convinced of her potential, she decided to give powerlifting a go.

7 Days A Week

Soon Julia found herself going to the gym 7 days a week to be trained personally, this meant she had dedicate her life to fitness and building muscles very quickly. She was very determined that she would be known as more than just a pretty face.

New Love For Weights

When describing those first few months, Julia explains, “Building muscle wasn’t my main goal at all- I even thought that it would be impossible, I just liked to lift heavy weights, which is why I still do it.”


Julia is well aware of her appearance and how it has lead to her getting noticed not only in the gym but on the internet to. She believes there are three reasons as to why she has got a lot of attention: “I have these big, beautiful eyes and wear makeup. But at the same time, I’m strong.”

Working Out

Obviously Julia didn’t immediately start with the heavy weights, but thanks to her strict workout routine she has been able to see an impressive rate of growth in her muscles. She spends hours at a time in the gym, working purely on strength and speed, rather than cardio. Weighing in at 147lbs, she is certainly no lightweight but she can currently lift 4oolbs!!

Lack Of Parental Support

In Russia it is very common for someone to stay living with their parents until at least 30 years old, but Julia feels like she was forced to move out when she was a teenager. In her late teens she decided to drop out of her university studies to pursue her career in bodybuilding, a decision her parents didn’t like, so she left.

“My parents did not support my idea, but sometimes, in order to build a happy life, you need to sacrifice all that you have.

Russian Education

Education is important no matter what country you live in, but it in Russian if you don’t have a college degree you are immediately looked down on. That’s why her parents were angry with her decision, but Julia holds no regrets, and so she shouldn’t.


As mentioned, Julia has been a huge success on the internet, largely thanks to her Instagram account which has an impressive 595k followers. On the account she is keen to express that she loves fashion, make-up but also loves being strong and athletic. Absolutely crushing an stereotypes/misconceptions people have

A ‘Girly’ Side

Both of these photos have been taken from Julia’s instagram account, so you can clearly see that she definitely has a ‘girly’ side. Having this difference in content on her page has helped her increase her adoring followers who heap praise on to her for being so unique with her posts.

Steroid Use

After becoming a viral sensation, Julia was accused of taking steroids to enhance her muscles, but she was quick to quash those accusations. She believes it is important to prove, especially to young people that you don’t need to endanger yourself with steroids. She said: “I’m proof to everyone that you can be cute and lift big weights at the same time without using steroids.”

Perfect Woman

Julia obviously has a lot of female fans who want to emulate her in the gym and on Instagram, but a large proportion of her followers her men who have labelled her as the ‘perfect woman’.

Intimidating Men In The Gym

Like we mentioned, Julia has many male admirers, but there have been occasions when she has been approached by strangers in the street and the gym who have reacted differently. Many comment on her muscles and that she has ‘disfigured her body’, these are often from men who can’t lift as much as her!

More Criticism

But like many Instagram stars, while their fans and followers there always people there to criticise. When asked about dealing with the haters in an interview, Julia said:

“There will always be people who respect my choice, or simply adequately explain why they don’t agree with it, but there is nothing to be gained by trying to defame someone who is following their dream.”

The Boyfriend

Remember that trainer she met on the first day of her gym training? Well now he is her boyfriend, the couple have been together for four years after first meeting over six years ago. She says she owes her boyfriend a lot and that she couldn’t do it without him.

Feminine Body

She believes that having a ‘feminine body’ isn’t just about appearance but also about the personality within. She says she would rather look like ‘a man’ and act like a ‘lady’ should, rather than have a feminine body but behave disgustingly.

Role Model

Everyone has a role model that they look towards, whether it’s a celebrity, their parents or a best friend. Julia’s is American author Tony Robbins, she claims she watches hours of his videos and read his books to help her through her everyday life.

Money Maker

Thanks to her online fame, supplement companies are constantly trying to get Julia to promote their products for them, she is currently working with European Fitness site ‘Prozis’. All she does is include the company’s products in her videos and photos on her social media platform. Simples! She even has her own special code ‘Muscle Barbie’ for her followers to use when buying products to get a discount!

Not A Normal 21 Year Old

There have been many sacrifices in her life to get to where she is now, including her social life. Julia admits that she doesn’t really have one like a normal 21 year old: “I do not go to parties because I do not think I can meet interesting people there. Instead my entourage consists of intelligent and successful people who I’ve learned a lot from.”

Powerlifting Champion

In 2014, Julia not only competed in the World Powerlifting Championships but she won it! Being able to squat 473lbs, bench press 264 lbs and dead-lift 418lbs certainly came in handy!

Chinese TV Star

As we’ve mentioned, Julia is a very pretty girl as well as a powerlifter, thanks to this she has had a number of requests to model for the video game industry, thanks to her ‘anime’ face type. She has also appeared on a Chinese TV game show!

The Complete Transformation

From a young academic to an Instagram Superstar, Julia’s ‘Muscle Barbie’ transformation has been incredible. In just seven years she has gone from a skinny petite girl, to a global icon, and she’s only 21!