Gucci and other luxury brands are shaking off their old-fashioned airs to attract millennials and Gen Z – and it’s really paying off

Once upon a time, aspiration, grandeur, exclusivity and perfection were the defining markers of luxury.

Yet as a notoriously passionate and outspoken generation comes of age, luxury is witnessing a definitive shift, with power moving from brands to consumers, who are in favour of democratising luxury’s perfection-driven aesthetic with a chance to make it their own.

The result? An industry that’s celebrating a more casual and offbeat aesthetic and one that has, though surprising to many, welcomed a new ideal: imperfection.

With heritage having less relevance to younger consumers, many of them are turning to social and digital platforms to engage with brands in a far more authentic way.

They want to see brands shake off their old-fashioned images and embrace openness and accessibility.

Under the creative direction of Alessandro Michele, Gucci’s tongue-in-cheek tone of voice, paired with its mash-up of high and low cultural references, has gone down well with consumers.