As ‘city walk’ becomes a status symbol among China’s urban consumers, lifestyle and fashion brands are creating street experiences as an accessible entry point.
Ask anyone under the age of 30 living in urban China about the coolest thing to do in the post-Covid era, and you’ll hear the same answer: the city walk.
As the name suggests, the city walk trend involves exploring urban areas in a relaxed, thoughtful way, akin to the French flânerie concept, a kind of aimless strolling, of the 19th century. Since the country lifted its Covid-19 lockdown in early 2023, “city walk” is among the most popular lifestyle trends in China.
Originally a niche activity enjoyed by urbanites during the lockdowns, city walks rapidly evolved into a mainstream lifestyle. The social media platform Xiaohongshu ranked “city walk” fifth among its “Top 10 Lifestyle Trends of 2022.”
Today, this trend has become a lifestyle synonym for urban cool in China, with over 2.15 million user-generated content notes and 440 million views on Xiaohongshu alone.
Who is the city walker?
“The typical city walker is a white-collar young professional wearing #clean fit clothing and strolling the streets with a cup of $8 craft coffee at Wukang Road in Shanghai,” describes Lili Jing, a Bilibili fashion critic during his viral video commenting on the trend.
In essence, city walkers have become China’s equivalent of the athleisure-wearing, smoothie-holding crowd found in the bustling streets of New York and London. According to a study from the marketing firm Kurun Data, over 60 percent of city walkers are college-educated, high-income women between the ages of 18 and 35, residing in China’s first-tier cities. Continue to read the full article here