Daily Drip

Seen on the Street: Singles’ Day Durex x Ali Health Pop-Up


While Singles’ Day isn’t just for singles — my wife, for example, was ready to pull the trigger on a Taobao list including water floss and a humidifier as soon the clock struck 12 last night — it is a chance for brands to raise awareness around issues that might disproportionately affect the young and unattached. Issues such as sexual health.

A few days ago I was walking down Gulou Dong Dajie in Beijing and passed the abandoned shell of formerly excellent music venue Mao Livehouse, and was stopped short by this arresting display of neon:

Upon further inspection I found Mao’s stage to be fully intact and still loaded with music gear, but the space was entirely taken over for a pop-up event co-sponsored by condom brand Durex and Ali Health, the medical arm of Singles’ Day’s biggest promoter, e-commerce company Alibaba.

Random passers-by like myself were encouraged to complete three simple tasks involving various Durex products (stack 20 condoms within 60 seconds, assemble a small metal structure while wearing surgical gloves smeared with KY jelly, identify the sound waves made by a mystery vibrator…) for a chance to scan a QR code at the end and potentially take one of these items home for free. I didn’t manage to win anything but hey, I applaud the effort. Enjoy yourselves (responsibly), singles!

Josh Feola
Josh Feola is a US-based writer and musician, and RADII's former Culture Editor. His coverage of Chinese music and art has appeared in The Wire, Dazed, MIT Technology Review, Artsy, Bandcamp Daily and more. He's been active in China's underground music scene since 2010 via his booking platform pangbianr.com, and is a former member of Beijing bands Chui Wan, SUBS, and Vagus Nerve.

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