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By MENG WENJIE | China Daily | Updated: 2023-08-30 09:25
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"Maillard style" is the latest fashion trend. [Photo/VCG]

Fashion that looks good enough to eat

Recently, you may have noticed the emergence of some new, captivating trends in the fashion industry, from "dopamine dressing" to "tomato girl". Now, the time is ripe to elevate your style with an exciting new aesthetic that's gaining popularity across social media — the "Maillard style".

The term "Maillard" originally refers to the Maillard reaction. This phenomenon, well-known in Western cuisine, describes a chemical reaction between proteins and carbohydrates under heat that produces "flavor chemicals and browning in foods such as fried onions, toast, steak and roasted coffee", as outlined by BBC Science Focus.

Similarly, Maillard-inspired fashion involves creating layers of various shades of brown hues, ranging from rich reddish-browns to warm yellow-browns, cozy khakis, and delicate off-whites.

In contrast to the colorful dopamine dressing and the fresh-looking tomato girl, Maillard style employs a world of enduring, deep-toned earth colors, capturing the essence of lush surroundings in fall and bringing out a sense of comfort and warmth.

"Earthy tones, like clay, have a lot of adaptability that flatters a wide range of skin tones, eye colors, and hair shades," said Ramy Brook Sharp, founder and creative director of fashion brand Ramy Brook, according to the website InStyle.

Young people are embracing "gap days" as a way to relax. [Photo/VCG]

Fill your cup with a 'gap day'

"Tomorrow will be my 'gap day'. In fact, I initiated this 'gap' precisely at 5:10 pm." These words resonated strongly on Xiaohongshu, a Chinese lifestyle-sharing platform, as a recent post about experiencing a "gap day" went viral.

The idea of a "gap day" draws inspiration from the well-known concept of a "gap year", which refers to a period of time during which young people choose to temporarily divert from the traditional path of pursuing higher education or entering the workforce to seek out new life experiences instead.

In the context of a "gap day", Chinese magazine New Weekly defines it as "a day of relaxation within a bustling schedule".

But what sets the "gap day" apart is the readiness to rapidly return to one's work or studies. Many young people perceive this form of respite as more of a "gap" in their activities rather than a complete "break".Therefore, the notion of a "gap" has evolved to become more adaptable and shorter in duration, giving rise to variations such as "gap night", "gap hour", or even "gap minute".

"For those who can't spare the time for a full gap year, opting for a gap day can probably serve as an excellent alternative," one netizen commented.


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