In Mandalay in British Burma. She was the youngest of five siblings. She passed seventh grade from Wesleyan School.
At 18, May Shin joined First Rate (at Lloyd's) Film Company as an aspiring actress.
She was soon highly acclaimed for her soft gentle singing voice. Her first film was, starring opposite actor Yegaung Chit Swe but she became known in the first Burmese sound film Hmya National Maung.
As a radio presenter at the Burma Broadcasting Service in the 1950s, she actively supported U Nu’s government against the left-wing campaign by appealing to armed insurgents to surrender. In 1958, she was awarded the title Wunnakyawhtin (ဝဏ္ဏကျော်ထင်), the highest honor given to an artist by the Burmese government in that time.
In 1962, at the age of 45, May Shin gave up acting and singing and withdrew from public life.
In 2004, purged Prime Minister General Khin Nyunt visited her in Mandalay shortly before he was arrested. May Shin died of pulmonary edema at her residence in Aung Daw Mu Ward, Mandalay. She was 91.