BEAUTY IN CHINA

Today, beauty in China is still dominated by standard criteria. Embodied by celebrity actresses and emulated by influencers and live-streamers, these standards dictate anything from the shape of face, nose and eyes, to what texture and shade skin should have. To achieve this ideal women use a range of beauty enhancement solutions, from the virtual to cosmetic surgery. 

Beauty is instrumentalised. In a competitive, dynamic society, it is a tool to get the man, get the job, and increasingly, to look good on social media, where success is also often monetized.

Yet gradually, definitions of beauty are expanding. A few pioneer celebrities are pushing more individual, diverse looks or body proportions, and fitness is now a thing so that a toned, healthy body is becoming part of a more holistic understanding of beauty. With the advances of technology, personal appearances will soon become constructed and women will be able to hyper tailor their looks. Much of this might be geared towards anti aging as the median age in China will pass the 40 year-old mark by 2030.

 

We help our clients to navigate this fast-changing sector and understand women's attitudes. Here are some of our recent projects:

 

  • Shu Uemura: this makeup trends analysis set out to understand Chinese beauty culture and influences. We compared beauty attitudes across East Asia’s three big markets: China, Japan and Korea and examined aesthetic preferences, makeup usage and routines and trends in color cosmetics. We also looked at influencers and major references in the area of makeup artistery. Finally, a retail scan revealed new trends in the beauty retail landscape.
     

  • Kraemer retail design: we explored the effect of recent trends like  sharing and minimalism on beauty, as well as consumer-centric retail experiences, which media channels influence on beauty and the role of social media e.g. Wechat as a commerce and service platform
     

  • Atelier/ Publicis Advertising: This qualitative research project aimed to explore Chinese women’s attitudes to beauty and define key trends that are culturally anchored. Based on in-depth interviews conducted in China and with overseas based Chinese women, we explored areas from the continuous influence of TCM (traditional Chinese medicine ) to the exposure to K Pop and Manga in order to explain existing beauty criteria and to chart their likely evolution.

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