Brigitte Truong and her mother, Michelle. Courtesy of Sephora Canada.

Starring Canadian influencers Brigitte Truong and Angel Zheng.

This year, Lunar New Year welcomes The Year of The Ox and Sephora Canada is getting the festivities started early with the release of its fifth annual Lunar New Year campaign.

Beginning today, Sephora fans can shop an assortment of limited-edition beauty goods as well as custom Lunar New Year gift cards and promo offers. What is most noteworthy, however, is the campaign’s much-welcomed push past the commercial by featuring meaningful moments of cross-cultural exchange that highlight different values and traditions behind the holiday. (Lunar New Year is an annual 15-day festival that’s celebrated by multiple East Asian cultures around the world. It officially kicks off on February 12th.)

The Lunar New Year campaign is the latest extension of Sephora Canada’s We Belong To Something Beautiful series, a platform that’s been championing diversity and inclusion since its inception in 2019. To bring the campaign to life, the beauty retailer has brought on Canadian influencers Brigitte Truong and Angel Zheng.

A selection of limited-edition Lunar New Year beauty offerings available at Sephora Canada.

Through videos and images shared across Sephora Canada’s social media platforms, both women will be seen highlighting the significance that the holiday holds to them. Truong will also be featured in campaign imagery, alongside her mother, both online and in select stores.

“On the first day of Lunar New Year, which is the busiest day, my parents and I always visit the Buddhist temple around the corner from their home. This is an opportunity for us to pray to deities for good luck, blessings and prosperity in the coming year,” explains Truong who’s based in Toronto and describes herself as first-generation Chinese Canadian. “We also enjoy other festivities that are held throughout the afternoon, like a celebratory lunch, a traditional dragon dance, unique holiday treats and festive music.”

“The holiday is an important time for our immediate and extended family to come together to enjoy food, love and the exchange of red envelopes,” she adds. “More importantly, it’s a time for us to really pay homage to our loved ones who have passed on: Family gatherings allow us to honour the blessings they gave us when they were still with us.”

Brigitte Truong photographed alongside her mother Michelle. Courtesy of Sephora Canada.

For Vancouver-based Zheng, celebrating family ties rings true, too. “Since my parents and I moved to Canada from China when I was four, we’ve never really been able to celebrate Lunar New Year in its entirety, however we always like to host a family dinner and celebrate with traditional Lunar New Year food, like rice cakes, noodles, glutinous rice balls and dumplings,” she says.

The world of beauty is also very closely linked. “I look forward to this time of the year because the family gets bolder with the colour red: red lipstick, eyeshadow, jewelry, and clothing. Red represents joy, happiness and good luck — three things we all strive for,” reveals Truong. “My mom still gives me lucky money in traditional gold and red envelopes and, in recent years, I’ve been gifting her red lipstick.”

It’s this very connection that makes participating in the Sephora campaign even more special for Zheng. “Ever since Sephora started to showcase Lunar New Year, another tradition that my mom added to our celebrations was shopping for Lunar New Year-inspired beauty products. Since my sister and I receive hong baos (lucky red pockets that are filled with money) from our aunties and uncles, my mom would take us to Sephora to shop for beauty and skincare products” she says. “This is not a cultural tradition at all, but it’s something unique to my family that I enjoy every year.”

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