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7 Chinese Models You Need To Know

By April 4, 2020 No Comments

From the all-black Black Panther to RuPaul’s Drag Race, minority representation in media is at an all-time high. Even the world of fashion, which has pushed a singular (often Euro-Centric) idea of beauty for the longest time, is starting to catch up.

More and more brands are scrambling to work with top Chinese models. And in 2017, the popular Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show featured – for the first time in the show’s history – seven stunning Chinese women.

In honour of Asian models and minority representation, we’ve made a list of the top seven Chinese models in the world.

Jennifer Du

Age: 36

Years in the industry: 14

Also known by her birth name, Du Juan, Du is considered the world’s first Chinese supermodel. She trained in classical ballet for almost a decade before hitting her stride as a model. In 2005, she made history as the first Asian model on the cover of Vogue Paris.

To date, Du has worked with the world’s biggest designers, including Louis Vuitton, Gap, Yves St. Laurent, and Swarovski. She also holds the record for the most appearances on the cover of Vogue China.

Liu Wen

Age: 31

Years in the industry: 14

Liu was still a teen when she started her modelling career. Liu began working as a model after losing the New Silk Road World Model Contest. It would be a small road bump on an otherwise red hot career; just a few years later, she made her first international appearance at Paris Fashion Week.

Since then, Liu has been associated with huge brands like; Burberry, Coach, Chanel, Hermes, H&M, Alexander Wang, Tiffany & Co., Louis Vuitton, and Calvin Klein. In 2009, she became the first ever Asian Victoria’s Secret runway model.

In 2013, Liu was named the first Asian on Forbes’ list of the highest-paid models in the world. Four years later, she broke another record and became the first Chinese model to appear on the cover of US Vogue.

Sui He

Age: 29

Years in the industry: 12

Sui was an accomplished swimmer for seven years, but it wasn’t long before she found her true calling. After winning a modelling contest at 17, Sui signed with a major Chinese agency.

In 2011, she finally caught her big break in the form of an incredible spring/summer season where she became the first East-Asian to open a Ralph Lauren show, walked for Dolce & Gabbana, and closed for Vivienne Tam.

One of her biggest achievements is bagging a spot at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, being only the second Chinese model to do so. She walked a total of 7 shows in VS lingerie, with the 2017 runway being her last.

Shu Pei

Age: 28

Years in the industry: 11

Shu Pei was born in China, but her modelling career began while she was studying in New York. After signing to Next Management in 2007, Pei appeared in several editorials and runways. Barely three years into her modelling career, she had walked over 60 shows and landed a place in the Top 50 Models list on models.com.

Pei walked the Victoria’s Secret show for the first time in 2012 and then again for the historic show in 2017.

Ming Xi

Age: 30

Years in the industry: 10

Just like many others in the industry, Ming Xi got her start as a model by joining a competition. She first appeared on TV for Dragon Television’s “Go! Oriental Angels”, but it wasn’t until she won third place in the Elite Model Look competition that her career really took off.

Xi was offered a contract with Givenchy, and appeared in the editorials and runways for the next couple years. Her career also included a stint as a bikini and swimsuit model for La Perla alongside Liu Wen. Xi Victoria’s Secret runway debut came in 2013, and she’s walked every year since.

In the 2017 show, she gained a lot of notoriety for falling during her walk. But that faux pas (and her humbled response to it) just made her seem more human. That unfortunate stunt ended up earning her over a million followers on Instagram.

Xiao Wen Ju

Age: 30

Years in the industry: 9

Ju may have only started modelling in 2010, but she’s made huge waves since then. After appearing on the cover of Harper’s Bazaar China, Ju walked the New York Fashion Week runway. In 2012, she became the first Chinese face of a Marc Jacobs’ campaign. She also appeared on the cover of Vogue Italia, the runways of Louis Vuitton and Prada, and the campaigns of Adidas and Dior.

She later gained even more prominence when she debuted on the VS runway show in 2016 and became the face of L’Oreal Paris in the same year. In 2017, models.com listed her as an Industry Icon, cementing her as one of the hottest names in the modelling industry today.

Fei Fei Sun

Age: 30

Years in the industry: 11

The current spokesperson of Estee Lauder is none other than Fei Fei Sun. Just like Ming Xi, Sun won third place at the international Elite Model Look competition. It didn’t take long for designers to snatch her up – in 2009, Karl Lagerfeld himself handpicked her to walk a Chanel fashion show.

Since then, she’s become the first East-Asian model to have a solo cover on Vogue Italia. She was also the first Asian face of the brand Valentino, and the first cover for Vogue Hong Kong’s debut issue. Her other runways include the likes of Prada, Dior, Christopher Kane, Hermes, and Miu Miu.

Final Thoughts

There have been huge strides in Asian (or specifically, Chinese) representation on the runway, but the fashion world is still waiting for its own Crazy Rich Asians moment. If there’s going to be a boom for Asian models in the near future (as there should be), we’re sure that these seven incredible women will be at the front of the pack.

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