Born in Waipahu, Hawai'i and an only child, Thorn is of half Japanese, a quarter Puerto Rican, and a quarter Hawaiian descent. Her mother works as a secretary, and her father is in the construction business. Thorn has revealed that she lost her virginity at the age of 14.
Growing up in Hawaii, Thorn's first job was working in promotion and marketing for a record company at age 14. At 16 years-old, she relocated to California, where she worked at a coffee shop and at Melrose boutiques. She later said regarding the move: "When I was a little kid, I already knew I wanted to be a stripper."
After she turned 18, Thorn began working as a stripper, then went from dancing to nude modeling, followed by masturbation scenes, and later hardcore sex. Thorn was discovered by a talent agent in a club. The first adult film that she did was "for Ed Powers."
In 2011, Complex magazine ranked her at #21 on their list of “The Top 50 Hottest Asian Porn Stars of All Time.”