What’s trending this month in: Asia

At WGSN our global editors are clued into everything from what is happening in their local area, to the rest of the continent.

Here’s our round up of what’s making the headlines in Asia right now:

The 93-year-old grandma and rising Instagram model


Japanese artist Chinami Mori weaves incredible pieces of clothing, but it’s her cheerful grandma/model who is quickly becoming an Instagram star. Emiko, aged 93, is regularly pictured modelling her granddaughter’s colourful creation, looking absolutely adorable. [Instagram]

What’s on Chinese tourists’ shopping list

Chinese tourists are famous for their spending prowess, sweeping everything from cosmetics to diapers and rice cookers off the shelves. This month, they seem to have found a new favourite with Japanese condoms after local reports of China-made “fake condoms” using inferior rubber. Other popular items include sanitary napkins, nail clippers, instant noodles and American branded clothing. [WSJ]

Virtual red packets, over 8 billion of them


Gone are the days we got red envelopes stuffed with cash during the Chinese New Year – this year, more than 8 billion digital red packets were sent on China’s social messaging app WeChat within the first 24 hours. That is almost eight times the amount sent last year. The fun part? You can offer, for example, RMB20 (about $3) in total and have it distributed randomly to a select few friends. Some may win big and others may be left with a few cents.


Kate Spade and Uniqlo are among those that gave out red packets in their WeChat campaigns. [Shanghaiist]

Line’s camera app promises the perfect #foodporn


In Asia, we like to take photos of our food. We have a slang for it in Cantonese that at the beginning of a meal, “cameras eat first”. This month, messaging app Line released a new photo app called “Foodie” that promises to capture the perfect food photos with 24 different filters specifically designed for different types of foods. Forget Rise or Valencia, these filters are called Crispy, BBQ, Yum, Chewy and Fresh designed to enhance the colours and textures of food. [Adweek]

Japan’s grumpier grumpy cat


There is a new grumpy cat in town and she’s taking the internet by storm. Hailing from Yokohama, Japan, Koyuki is a nine-year-old Scottish Fold with a chilling death stare and a permanent resting angry face. And this angry face has garnered her more than 40,000 followers on Twitter and 15,000 on Instagram. [Instagram]

Apple Pay in China: 80,000 cards added per minute

Since Apply Pay launched in China on 18 February, local Chinese media estimate that an average of 80,000 cards have been tied up with the mobile payment service each minute. It’s too soon to tell if Apple Pay has a future in a market already dominated by Alipay and WeChat wallet, but it does have a few tricks up its sleeves having partnered with all of China’s big banks to offer cashback rewards and discounts.

For more in-depth global and local retail intelligence, join WGSN.

Know what’s next. Become a WGSN member today to benefit from our daily trend intelligence, retail analytics, consumer insights and bespoke consultancy services.