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Unlocking the 'New Chinese Style': What Fashion Brands Need to Know About China's Latest Trend

China's latest fashion trend, especially the fashion scenes of Shanghai, Beijing, and Chengdu, a centuries-old skirt design is making a powerful comeback among the youth. The "mamianqun," or "horse face skirt," traditionally worn by ethnic-majority Han Chinese before the Qing dynasty, has evolved from a niche historical garment to a mainstream fashion staple. This resurgence is part of a broader trend known as "xinzhongshi," or "new Chinese style," which blends contemporary designs with traditional Chinese aesthetics.

chinese woman wearing skirt

Key Takeaways for Fashion Brands

1. Cultural Fusion Drives Popularity

The "new Chinese style" trend demonstrates a unique blend of old and new, where traditional designs are reinterpreted with modern elements. This fusion appeals to Gen Z's patriotic sentiments and their desire for unique, culturally resonant fashion.

2. Social Media Amplification

Platforms like Weibo and Xiaohongshu are pivotal in driving the trend's popularity. Hashtags related to "new Chinese style" have garnered over 100 million searches, indicating a substantial market interest. Influencers and designers play a crucial role in shaping and promoting these trends.

3. Versatility and Inclusivity

The "new Chinese style" is marked by its lack of rigid rules, allowing for personal expression and inclusivity. This flexibility makes it accessible and appealing to a wide audience, encouraging creativity in styling traditional pieces with modern attire.

Insights and Strategies for Fashion Brands

1. Leverage Cultural Storytelling
Brands should tap into the rich narratives of Chinese heritage to create compelling marketing stories. Highlighting the history and significance of traditional garments like the mamianqun can resonate deeply with consumers who value cultural authenticity.
2. Collaborate with Influencers
Partnering with key social media influencers who are popularizing the "new Chinese style" can amplify brand visibility and credibility. Influencers like Momo on Xiaohongshu provide valuable insights on how to incorporate traditional elements into everyday wear, offering brands a pathway to reach and engage with target audiences.
3. Focus on Quality and Craftsmanship
While the trend is commercially lucrative, there are concerns about the quality of some products. Investing in high-quality materials and craftsmanship can distinguish brands in a market where some offerings are perceived as "shoddily made."
4. Innovate with Traditional Designs
Fashion brands should explore innovative ways to modernize traditional designs. Designers like Samuel Gui Yang and Ian Hylton have successfully integrated subtle heritage details into contemporary fashion, proving that there's a significant market for thoughtfully designed, culturally inspired clothing.
5. Adapt to E-commerce Dynamics
The e-commerce landscape in China is instrumental in the trend's growth. Brands should optimize their online presence and leverage e-commerce platforms to reach a broader audience. The significant increase in mamianqun sales on platforms like Douyin highlights the potential of digital marketplaces in driving fashion trends.


The "new Chinese style" is more than just a fashion trend; it's a cultural movement that blends the richness of Chinese heritage with contemporary fashion. For fashion brands, understanding and embracing this trend offers a unique opportunity to connect with young, culturally conscious consumers. By focusing on cultural storytelling, quality craftsmanship, and innovative design, brands can successfully ride the wave of this modern yet traditional fashion phenomenon.

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