China’s fashion industry supports cultural renaissance. Palace Museum released new lipstick, but is already fly off the shelves. “Please help me where to buy it, it’s amazing!” said a netizen on Weibo
The Forbidden City Museum, also known as Palace Museum, is not a place only for traditional Chinese culture. Last Sunday, the Palace Museum released its new series of product – limited edition of a lipstick collection in six colors on its online store, provoking excitement among netizens and fashion lovers. It’s no surprise they’re always sold out.
This is done by the Palace Museum Cultural and Creative Store, which has released many delicate and creative products based on a historical theme in recent years.
Today, Chinese millennials are arguably the most important demographic segment on the planet – and they’re tuning in to ancient culture. Their daily lives are incredibly modern – they’re constantly connected to the internet, around which their friendships, entertainment, and work revolve.
But the consumption of Chinese millennials is surprisingly complex; economically strong and culturally divided between ancient values, modernity, and national pride.
Photos of models for the lipsticks released by the Palace Museum
It is precisely millennials’ rediscovery of Chinese ancient culture to which foreign brands must cater to be competitive in the market. With over 3,000 years of history, Chinese civilization is one of the oldest in the world and millennials have become the spokespeople of cultural pride. This pride is reflected in both everyday style and consumption patterns.
But foreign brands aren’t paying heed to millennial preference. A prime example of this ignorance was the onslaught of dogs pasted on clothes to honor Chinese New Year this year. Even don’t mention Dolce & Gabbana’s affaire.
After the official launch Palace Museum online store, the lipstick was already sold-out. The most favored “Lang Yao glaze red” has more than 3,000 orders to date.
There are several instances of Chinese brands’ efforts to cater to millennials’ desire to connect with ancient culture. China’s Forbidden City, a site of one of the world’s most famous monument, already launched a line of traditional accessories which it sold in brick and mortar sites as well as online.
They even hired a millennial marketing team to better connect with their target audience through digital millennial ‘speak’. And now the most famous PRC monument is launching on the market its lipstick.
Story of Yanxi Palace, the iQiyi blockbuster that has taken China by storm becaming a new cornerstone in luxury market. And Palace Museum is following this trend.
Sunday, the Palace Museum released its new series of product – limited edition of a lipstick collection in six colors on its online store, provoking excitement among netizens and fashion lovers. The most favored “Lang Yao glaze red” has more than 3,000 orders to date.
The packaging of the lipsticks was inspired by patterns from traditional Chinese porcelain and embroideries. Featuring the fairy cranes, lucky deer, butterflies and bees, and embellished by flowers like hydrangea and chrysanthemum, the patterns on the packaging shows a refined traditional Chinese beauty.
Besides, by the use of 3D printing, the packaging also presents the texture of embroidery, which makes it nearly a delicate art piece.
The younger generations are getting specific, expressing their desire to incorporate traditional culture into modern dress. According to millennials Tang, Song, Yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties each have their own specific styles. Instead of repeating superficial Chinese aesthetics, it’s better to go deeper in a specific period.
In ancient times it was believed that the so called “樱桃小口”, “small peach mouth” the literary translation, deemed a charming look on women. Now the “just bitten lips” fashion, is the current trend thanks to Story of Yanxi Palace, the iQiyi blockbuster that has taken China by storm becaming a new cornerstone in luxury market. And Palace Museum is following this trend.
How can foreign brands be on trend? Building an in-depth knowledge of Chinese culture and history is important.
A superficial cultural knowledge will not only drive marketing campaigns into the ground, it can spark loads of disparaging comments from millennials on Weibo and other social channels.
Millennials do not want to be labeled as 土豪, which literally means “enriched potato” signifying new-found wealth without culture. Reanimating ancient arts and crafts with the help of local experts and designers is a fertile direction for international luxury brands that want to enter the market.
China’s fashion industry supports cultural renaissance. The younger generations are getting specific, expressing their desire to incorporate traditional culture into modern dress
China’s younger generations are just beginning to delve into traditional culture, and want to discover more – even through consumptive channels. Foreign luxury brands can also support China’s cultural renaissance by funding cultural programs or by developing specific products that support local craftsmanship and skilled labor.
Nowadays it is not enough to have a name to emerge unscathed from a crisis. Among all the mistakes done by foreign enterprises, arrogance and lack of local understanding have been the major issues that led the Chinese to boycott their products. Moreover, online communities are a great resource for brands, they contribute to increasing visibility, but they can become the worst enemy when not respected.
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