Though Halloween is not traditionally observed in China, and it is thought to be a festival little known of in the country, young Chinese today are no strangers to this festival. As many of them have exposure to this western tradition, either through social media or personal experience overseas, there is an interest and demand in it similar to Christmas.
The young generation has taken the celebration as an opportunity to showcase, not only costumes but also individuality in the form of Halloween-related superficial beings and such.
This year, it is the outfits appearing in Squid Game that have become the go-to for the young. With Squid Game’s international acclaim and popularity, it is no surprise the deathly show has drawn a lot of viewers seeking to use Halloween’s long-established dressing-up to imitate the hit show.
Speaking to Dao Insights, some Chinese youngsters in the UK had revealed their plans to dress up in the tracksuits worn by the Squid Game guards. Back in China, the craving for these outfits is even higher, despite the government’s ban on Netflix’s most-streamed drama at home, highlighting a market that can be capitalised upon by costume brands.
Costume vendors in Yiwu, a “market vane” of China’s small commodity production in the Eastern province of Zhejiang, have reported that daily sales of several Squid Game suits had reached 3,000 units on Halloween Sunday – the average maximum capacity of small traders in the market.
Some had to work for extra hours to meet the demands of some 5,000 units per day, as according to state-owned media Global Times, once again showing the potential related to any fad-based consumerism.
The Squid Game outfits had been seen in amusement parks in big cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Chengdu, where Halloween-themed activities were undertaken on Saturday evening.
In addition to the costume, makeup had been another heated topic during this festival. While the words of Halloween Makeup became one of the top searches on Chinese social media, drawing over 1.13 billion views on Weibo and 90,000 notes on Xiaohongshu, the popular lifestyle e-commerce platform that also becomes a breeding ground for cosmetic products.
Beauty vloggers on these platforms have lined up for online tutorials on Halloween makeup, while cosmetic brands such as Perfect Diary, are offering free Halloween Makeup services at some of their physical stores.
The festival showcasing spookiness has seen a wider acceptance thanks to the “growing love for horror” among young Chinese. Meanwhile, the craving for this globally popular costume among Chinese young people on this year’s Halloween has shown the keenness of these young consumers to keep up with the world trends in spite of the government’s intention to limit the influence of Western culture on its youngsters.
Such enthusiasm would, more or less, ease the pressure for businesses that might otherwise miss out completely in leveraging these world’s hits. This market is a huge step for both national and international brands, who can capitalise on new consumer appetites from other cultures that young Chinese are readily adopting into their own.