Men don lingerie in live-stream shopping channels after China bans female models

To keep their businesses going, Chinese entrepreneurs used male models as a workaround. PHOTOS: SCREENGRAB FROM DOUYIN

Chinese businesses have turned to men to model lingerie on cyberspace after China banned women from showcasing undergarments online.

Dressed in push-up bras, tight-fitting corsets and lace-trimmed nightgowns, the men confidently hawked the apparel in several live-stream videos.

A male model even accessorised his pink slip dress with a pair of cat-ear headbands.

“Personally, we don’t really have a choice. The designs can’t be modelled by our female colleagues, so we will use our male colleagues to model it,” Jiupai News quoted a live-stream business owner, identified only as Mr Xu, as saying.

Companies that feature women in scantily-clad clothing have a history of being shut down for violating China’s law against spreading obscene material online.

To keep their businesses going, Chinese entrepreneurs used male models as a workaround.

This comes as China’s live-stream shopping scene is projected to be worth more than US$700 billion (S$946 billion) this year, according to Statista.

Mr Xu’s company live-streamed a male model in a silky robe in December last year on Douyin, China’s version of TikTok, with the caption: “The light and luxurious boudoir of the wife and adults.”

It chalked up more than 2,000 likes and hundreds of comments, ranging from amusement to reluctant acceptance.

“The guy wears it better than the girl,” wrote a commentator.

Another said: “So what should I do if I want to promote and showcase lingerie in the live broadcast session?

“It’s very simple, find a man to wear it.”

However, there were some who felt that the move would deprive women of job opportunities.

A baffled Mr Xu said: “Many directors of these live-streams are women, are they also stealing men’s jobs?”

Using men to model female products is not exactly new in China.

Influencer Austin Li Jiaqi became famous after modelling lipstick, earning him the moniker China’s “lipstick king”.

And then there is businessman Wu Nan, 41, who markets his own brand of women’s high heels by wearing them.

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