Chinese politicians have been known for looking spiffy with young, vibrant and youthful physiques.
This tradition does not hold true for China President Xi Jinping. He is popular for breaking the country’s conventions. He may not be vain when it comes to his appearance but he is reputed to be a good leader by many.
Xi Jinping is one of the few Chinese leaders to appear in public sporting grey hair. In the past Chinese leaders were always known for ensuring their hair remained black as a symbol of unity and to showcase their youthful appearance.
But Mr Xi, currently aged 65, is setting aside his vanity and making himself as a more relatable leader. This is being highlighted in some of his decisions in bending China’s strict policies.
While attending the recent annual meeting among China’s officials, his silver streaked hair was the talk of the town.
Gu Yan, a staff of a technology company in Xiamen, viewed this as a mark of humility.
Throughout his political career, Mr Xi has been known as a people’s leader. He is always seen in public in a navy blue, zippered windbreaker.
For experts, the greying hair is a depiction of being a father figure as the Chinese population have given him the nickname “Uncle Xi.”
Reports claim having grey hair is never a big deal in China. Even great leaders such as Mao and Deng Xiaoping were silver-haired in the later part of their regime.
According to sociologist Zhang Jiehai of the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, previously Chinese officials were dying their hair to hide their health condition and to look younger.
Today, most Chinese officials are younger and the community has become more adaptable to the changing times.
He added that grey hair has become a natural look and Chinese leaders don’t need to hide their real selves.