How China’s New Lifestyle Trends Will Affect Luxury

Luxury brands can use young fashionable lifestyles as a reference point, since they reflect the younger generation’s shopping habits and consumption preferences. Xiaohongshu and other sharing platforms have become key reference points for consumers when making their consumption decisions. However, they have also exposed brands to younger lifestyles. Many luxury brands value the site so much that they have opened official accounts on Xiaohongshu. This makes it an important marketing channel. What are these new lifestyles and how does it affect China’s luxury sector? Do they provide luxury brands with a new direction in their marketing plans for China?

Skiing boom

The Winter Olympics are just around the corner and cold-weather activities such as skiing are becoming increasingly popular online and offline. The 100% increase in search volume for “ski tutorial”, on Xiaohongshu, was a result of the Winter Olympics. This is after having increased significantly for two years consecutively. Apart from the Winter Olympics, ice and snow sports have grown from a niche activity to become a popular middle-class sport. This should make skiing more popular in the future.

Ski-related discussions at Doujin and Xiaohongshu 

Because of its high economic value, the ski industry has been called “Platinum Bonanza” in China (Bai Jin Fu Kuang). This extreme economic growth has also helped to drive other industries, such as the luxury industry. Luxury goods are a natural fit for ski-related products due to their high price. This trend has been noticed by luxury brands, who are now launching products related to ski-related activities. Luxury brands are hoping to capitalize on the Winter Olympics’ popularity to promote their ski collections. Prada opened a pop-up shop called Prada on Ice in Beijing SKP in September 2021 to sell its exclusive Winter Olympics series. FENDI, a ski brand, launched products with Jackson Wang and opened a coffee shop called FENDI at Chinghai Mountain International Tourism Resort.

Prada on Ice pop-up store in Beijing SKP.  

A 2021 Luxury User White Paper, published by Luxe. Co and Weibo, showed that 49.2% feel that luxury products on the Chinese market are not trendy enough. With growing interest in skiing in China, fashion lovers are sharing their lifestyles via social media. Luxury brands should consider making sports more fashionable in the future.

Urban outdoor life boom

People are tired of staying indoors and working long hours (due to the pandemic). People started going outside and wanted to engage in outdoor activities like paddling, kayaking, and ultimate frisbee. The number of posts on Xiaohongshu about an outdoor lifestyle increased by fivefold, annually. The trend was also evident offline at the International Trade Show for Sports Equipment and Fashion Shanghai. The camping section grew by tenfold over the previous year. Outdoor activities are increasingly being welcomed in China, both in terms of market size as well as frequency of consumer discussions.


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