Reports

    Who are China’s top ‘noble lady’ KOLs? And why luxury brands should take note

    Jing Daily identifies five names leading the ‘noble lady’ influencer trend and influencing wealthy consumers’ premium purchases.
    Image: Xiaohongshu
      Published   in KOL

    Despite challenging economic times in China, a group of women and men from high net worth (HNW) and ultra high net worth (UHNW) households is sharing their daily lives online — attending lavish gatherings, ordering couture pieces, and collecting high-end jewelry — and has amassed impressive followings.

    Known as “noble ladies” (富家千金), these posters have gained traction on Xiaohongshu, where 90 percent of users comprises Gen Z individuals from top-tier cities. The proliferation of these KOLs is refining and reshaping the luxury fashion tastes of young Chinese consumers who aspire to this lifestyle.

    Isabella Ye @1saye#

    Xiaohongshu: 1.85 Million followers

    Total Media Impact Value (MIV*): $5.54 million (39.8 million RMB)

    Isabella Ye (@1saye) stands out as a representative of the 'noble lady' style on Xiaohongshu. Image: @1saye
    Isabella Ye (@1saye) stands out as a representative of the 'noble lady' style on Xiaohongshu. Image: @1saye

    At just 24 years old, Isabella Ye (@1saye) stands out as a representative of the noble lady style on Xiaohongshu. Standing at 170cm tall and weighing a mere 45kg, Ye is renowned for her attractive, slim and elegant appearance. Her cultivated image of “pure, noble, and soft femininity” has garnered an impressive following of 1.85 million on the lifestyle platform.

    Numerous fashion accounts dedicated to dissecting celebrities’ and bloggers’ “outfits of the day” (OOTD), such as Mumu (@沐木), frequently showcase Ye’s style on Xiaohongshu under the tag “Learn the noble lady style from @1saye’s outfits.”

    Particularly noteworthy are Ye’s jewelry pieces, including Graff’s butterfly necklace, Van Cleef’s Perlée clovers, and Bulgari’s Serpenti Viper, all of which have gained popularity on Xiaohongshu. Netizens believe these high-end jewelry accessories can elevate the wearer’s image and outfit.

    Given Ye’s substantial influence, high-end jewelry brands are seeking collaborations with her. A recent tie-up with Buccellati saw Ye co-create a post for the Year of the Dragon, coincidentally her own Chinese zodiac sign.

    In the post, Ye showcases a Buccellati Macri bracelet, Opera Tulle red enamel necklace, and Rombi earrings. Accompanying her is Buccellati’s silver ‘Bu BU Dragon’ trinket, designed to bring good luck. The partnership is an astute one, as many young girls born in the Year of the Dragon seek red-themed inspiration for their own zodiac year and easily relate to Ye’s style.

    Tian Tian @田田小阿姨#

    Xiaohongshu: 1.5 Million followers

    Douyin: 6.3 Million followers

    Total MIV: $9.08 million (65 million RMB)

    Sporting a Hermès Kelly and adorned in luxury brands from head to toe, Tian Tian (@田田小阿姨) presents herself as a Beijing socialite. Image: @田田小阿姨
    Sporting a Hermès Kelly and adorned in luxury brands from head to toe, Tian Tian (@田田小阿姨) presents herself as a Beijing socialite. Image: @田田小阿姨

    Sporting a Hermès Kelly and adorned in luxury brands from head to toe, Tian Tian (@田田小阿姨) presents herself as a Beijing socialite, or so she claims. Her daily routine involves sharing lighthearted videos that aim to demystify the lifestyle of China’s upper class and the exclusive gatherings within the realm of luxury: whether indulging in shopping sprees at SKP Beijing with peers, attending prestigious brand VIP events, or flaunting her Rolls Royces.

    But determining whether Tian Tian is a bona fide socialite, or a mere pretender, remains in question, as many users have cast doubt on her status. However, well-known socialite friends such as Beijing and Hong Kong socialite Wan Bao Bao (founder of a namesake haute jewelry brand) have made an appearance in Tian Tian's video, affirming their friendship and vouching for her authenticity.

    Regardless of this skepticism, Tian Tian’s entertaining videos, which lift the veil on luxury parties, continue to pique netizens’ curiosity, earning her an impressive following of 1.5 million on Xiaohongshu. This popularity has also attracted advertisements from various beauty brands. From Estée Lauder to Valentino Beauty and L’Oréal, nearly every short video she posts now features product placements or advertorials.

    Wanghong Quanxing @王红权星#

    Douyin: 4.25 million followers

    Xiaohongshu: 1.09 million followers

    Total MIV: $9.57 million (68.8 million RMB)

    An avid collector of diamond and green emerald jewelry as well as Hermès bags, Wanghong Quanxing (@王红权星) is a member of Beijing’s socialite scene. Image: @王红权星
    An avid collector of diamond and green emerald jewelry as well as Hermès bags, Wanghong Quanxing (@王红权星) is a member of Beijing’s socialite scene. Image: @王红权星

    Across Douyin and Xiaohongshu, this KOL commands a substantial combined following of 5.34 million. He shares glimpses of his daily life, featuring visits from jewelry dealers showcasing their latest collections and haute couture brands taking measurements for bespoke pieces. Wanghong Quanxing frequently collaborates with charitable organizations, emphasizing his commitment to giving back to the community.

    An avid collector of diamond and emerald jewelry, as well as Hermès bags, Wanghong Quanxing is not only a member of Beijing’s socialite scene, but also a close friend of Tian Tian. Frequently seen in Tian Tian’s videos, he is known for generously gifting her expensive items.

    Adorned with sizable stones and diamonds on his neck and fingers, Wanghong Quanxing occasionally hosts livestream sessions from the luxurious confines of his Beijing villa, where he resides with his daughter, engaging with fans and selling beauty products.

    Notably, he recently inaugurated his 1,000 square meters boutique, Quranus, located in the heart of Shanghai’s luxury district, adjacent to SKP. The ground floor houses an impressive collection of Hermès bags, including coveted items like the blue-chip Birkin Himalaya, while the first floor showcases an extensive jade jewelry collection, all available for purchase.

    In a recent expansion of his business portfolio, Wanghong Quanxing opened a hair salon that offers top-notch services at reasonable prices, pledging not to upsell customers with unnecessary services.

    Akiiiko @Akiiiko#

    Xiaohongshu: 749,000 followers

    Total MIV: $6.46 million (46.5 million RMB)

    Akiiiko indisputably holds the title of the Chanel unboxing queen. Image: Akiiiko
    Akiiiko indisputably holds the title of the Chanel unboxing queen. Image: Akiiiko

    While Wanghong Quanxing is renowned for his Hermès bag collection, Akiiiko indisputably holds the title of “Chanel unboxing queen.” Beyond handbags, she possesses a diverse array of Chanel items, encompassing ready-to-wear, accessories, and every product the brand releases.

    Watching Akiiiko unbox dozens of Chanel purchases is an immensely satisfying experience for her followers. In her videos, she meticulously details the reasons behind each acquisition, providing insights into how she styles them. One particularly memorable moment for netizens was the video capturing her joy upon receiving her first-ever public relations gift from Chanel a couple of years ago, where her genuine excitement over a small beauty present amused viewers. Today, she is a regular attendee at Chanel runway shows and events.

    At the age of 39, Akiiiko is the founder of In Waves, a buyer shop specializing in livestreaming the sale of medium-priced clothing, typically priced in the range of a few hundred dollars.

    Her unboxing repertoire has expanded beyond Chanel to include purchases for her husband and her daughter and son, featuring luxury brands such as Loro Piana, Dior, and Moncler. This diversification showcases Akiiiko's discerning taste and expertise in curating a wide array of premium items for herself and her family.

    Teresa Cheung @章小蕙#

    Xiaohongshu: 1.62 million followers

    Total MIV: $8.36 million (60 million RMB)

    Hong Kong socialite Teresa Cheung livestreaming on Xiaohongshu has revolutionized how people sell and purchase goods on livestreaming. Image: @章小蕙
    Hong Kong socialite Teresa Cheung livestreaming on Xiaohongshu has revolutionized how people sell and purchase goods on livestreaming. Image: @章小蕙

    Hong Kong socialite Teresa Cheung livestreams on Xiaohongshu have changed the way people sell and purchase goods online during live broadcast sessions.

    Unlike the fast-paced rhythm of Austin Li and Crazy Little Brother Yang, which entices consumers with big discounts for quick and impulsive purchases, Cheung takes a slow approach to livestreaming. Like art history lessons, she explains the meaning of each color’s name on an eyeshadow palette — including “Buon Fresco,” “Primavera,” and “Tempera” — through art and culture references.

    Last May, her debut livestreaming attracted over 1 million viewers and exceeded $7 million (50 million RMB) in gross merchandise volume.

    Socialite influencers have the natural advantage of quickly building credibility – people trust their taste and the source of their goods given their wealthy background. The exchange that is happening during the live sessions is more than a mere commercial transaction. Chinese consumers enjoy educating themselves about refined tastes, art, and culture through her live broadcast room.

    “Even before going into the livestreaming industry, Teresa Cheung was already a top voice in beauty and fashion because of her extravagant lifestyle and the exquisite taste she shows on social media. People see her as the embodiment of real old-money taste,” says Zhuang Jun, a brand consultant at Shanghai-based advertising agency OneClap.

    Why should brands collaborate with ‘noble lady’ KOLs#

    For brands seeking collaborations, partnering with affluent influencers like Teresa Cheung, Wanghong Quanxing, and Ye, can prove advantageous.

    Firstly, their lifestyle aligns seamlessly with luxury brands’ positioning and images, eliminating the need for trial-and-error reactions from fans. Secondly, these influencers, already significant spenders, wield considerable influence over their followers and close-knit circles.

    According to Bain, the top 2 percent of wealthy consumers globally were responsible for 40 percent of luxury sales around the world. In recent years, prestige brands have been opening up VIP-only salons in Beijing SKP to strengthen their desirability and to satisfy the preferences of their ultra-high-net-worth Chinese clientele.

    Such collaborations serve as a strategic avenue for brands looking to strengthen connections with the top 2 percent UHNWI clientele, providing a valuable springboard for mutual benefits.

    * Calculated by an algorithm designed by Launchmetrics, MIV (media impact value) measures and benchmarks the impact of media placements and mentions across various channels in the fashion, lifestyle, and beauty industries.

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