Hot or Not: Hong Baos of 2018

A look at the upcoming Year of the Dog's "ruff" and "paw-some" red packets

Starbucks
Starbucks
07 Feb 2018

Starbucks

Anything decorated with fluffy Cocker Spaniels is a plus in our books.

Verdict: HOT

Luxasia
Luxasia
08 Feb 2018

Luxasia

If we could doodle doggies this adorably, we’d stick our designs on an ang bao too.

Verdict: HOT

kikki.K
kikki.K
07 Feb 2018

kikki.K

We wouldn’t expect anything less than a chic, yet understated ang bao design from the Swedish stationery brand.

Verdict: HOT

ION Orchard
ION Orchard
07 Feb 2018

ION Orchard

We love how ION includes one envelope design for your favourite family members, and one design for everyone else. 

Verdict: HOT

Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre (SCCC)
Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre (SCCC)
08 Feb 2018

Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre (SCCC)

The SCCC’s red packets are literally works of art, as they feature paintings from Chen Chong Swee and Lim Hak Tai – two of Singapore’s pioneer generation artists.

Verdict: HOT

June’s PetHouse
June’s PetHouse
07 Feb 2018

June’s PetHouse

Too cute! The longer we stare at this envelope (produced by Desmond Tan’s dog groomer), the more tempted we are to adopt a puppy of our own.

Verdict: HOT

Laneige
Laneige
07 Feb 2018

Laneige

What’s cuter than polka dots? DOGGIE DOTS.

Verdict: HOT

Lego
Lego
07 Feb 2018

Lego

Blame it on the crazy eyes, but this looks less like a dog and more like the Big Bad Wolf.

Verdict: NOT

MAAD Creatives
MAAD Creatives
07 Feb 2018

MAAD Creatives

We love how MAAD Creatives marries what is trendy with what is traditional by placing a sassy-looking Shiba Inu against a carefully embossed backdrop.

Verdict: HOT

McDonald’s
McDonald’s
07 Feb 2018

McDonald’s

McDonald’s envelopes were SO cute last year. So we’re pretty disappointed at how much this year’s look like screenshots from an 8-bit video game. 

Verdict: NOT

Metro
Metro
07 Feb 2018

Metro

So cute. Adding doggie ears to an ang bao sounds simple enough, but so far, only Metro has managed to implement this easy design upgrade.

Verdict: HOT

Michelle Chong
Michelle Chong
07 Feb 2018

Michelle Chong

Wah, the chiobu on this angbao jin satki leh.

Verdict: CHIO

One Raffles Place
One Raffles Place
07 Feb 2018

One Raffles Place

This pleasing palette of pastels and peonies looks best when displayed as a set.

Verdict: HOT

Changi Airport
Changi Airport
07 Feb 2018

Changi Airport

Nothing says “crowd-pleaser” like Sanrio envelopes – although we do have to question why Dear Daniel looks more like a leprechaun than like someone celebrating the Lunar New Year.

Verdict: HOT

POSB
POSB
07 Feb 2018

POSB

The branding is strong here. The aesthetic? Not so much. POSB’s otherwise cute squirrel mascot should have taken a backseat for the dogs this year.

Verdict: NOT

Raffles City
Raffles City
07 Feb 2018

Raffles City

We’re not sure if Raffles City allocated most of its budget to just one hong bao out of four, or if the pink one was purposely designed for favoured recipients.

Verdict: 25 percent HOT, 75 percent NOT.

Redmart
Redmart
07 Feb 2018

Redmart

Cartoon veggies are cute and all, but this looks like someone made it on Photoshop in about 10 minutes.

Verdict: NOT

Robinsons
Robinsons
07 Feb 2018

Robinsons

Nothing like some peonies, kalanchoe flowers, and chrysanthemums to make us feel lucky in the New Year. Robinsons manages to keep it simple and on-theme without being boring.

Verdict: HOT

Royal Plaza on Scotts
Royal Plaza on Scotts
07 Feb 2018

Royal Plaza on Scotts

Royal Plaza on Scotts’ pint-sized pink and yellow pineapple envelopes might be the epitome of form over function, but at least their design will elicit the squeals. 

Verdict: HOT

Runaway Bandits
Runaway Bandits
07 Feb 2018

Runaway Bandits

Now here is one fashionable ang bao. (We’d wear a dress printed with this motif.)

Verdict: HOT

Sephora
Sephora
07 Feb 2018

Sephora

We half-expected Sephora’s hong bao to incorporate black and white stripes, and were pleasantly surprised that they incorporated their signature colour scheme using a Frenchie instead. (Also, we’d totally wear the hong bao’s shade of red as a lipstick).

Verdict: HOT


Starhub
Starhub
07 Feb 2018

Starhub

There is way too much happening on these envelope designs. Take it down a notch next time, Starhub!

Verdict: NOT

Swarovski
Swarovski
07 Feb 2018

Swarovski

We love how Swarovski managed to include both an actual and an illustrated crystal without going overboard on the bling.

Verdict: HOT

Tung Lok
Tung Lok
07 Feb 2018

Tung Lok

Yeah, these are a little extra, but we certainly applaud the artistry and the effort.

Verdict: HOT

UBS
UBS
07 Feb 2018

UBS

From a distance, UBS’ ornate floral ang bao looks more like a clutch than a red envelope. Fancy!

Verdict: HOT

Wall’s
Wall’s
07 Feb 2018

Wall’s

Another perennial crowd-pleaser: Tsum Tsums. Sure, original designs are nice, but these go over way better with the kids. A must-buy if you’re trying to win the hearts of your nephews and nieces.

Verdict: HOT

313 Somerset
313 Somerset
07 Feb 2018

313 Somerset

313’s envelope looks cheap and generic. Pass.

Verdict: NOT

City Square
City Square
07 Feb 2018

City Square

Want to be the favourite aunty or uncle at your next family gathering? Pass these around to the kids (Paw Patrol is all the rage with youngsters nowadays.) They might like what’s on the outside as much as what’s on the inside.

Verdict: HOT

Coach
Coach
07 Feb 2018

Coach

The embossed florals and high-quality paper give this envelope a decidedly luxe feel.

Verdict: HOT

COS
COS
07 Feb 2018

COS

ZZZZZ.

Verdict: NOT

DBS
DBS
07 Feb 2018

DBS

As cute as this ensemble is as a whole, we especially love how the one with the sunglasses would fit right in on the cover of Crazy Rich Asians.

Verdict: HOT

FairPrice
FairPrice
07 Feb 2018

FairPrice

These flowers are in desperate need of pruning.

Verdict: NOT

Gardens by the Bay
Gardens by the Bay
07 Feb 2018

Gardens by the Bay

While these aren’t offensively ugly, Gardens By The Bay really dropped the ball creatively. Think about how colourful it could have been!

Verdict: NOT

Great Eastern
Great Eastern
07 Feb 2018

Great Eastern

The origami terrier elevates this design from plain to ‘paw-some’.

Verdict: HOT

Guardian
Guardian
07 Feb 2018

Guardian

Not all of Guardian’s envelopes were created equal. At first glance, the red envelope looks a little cheap, but the orange and yellow ones are kind of cute, especially with the illustrations of tea sets and dragons. 

Verdict: Mixed bag

HomePro
HomePro
07 Feb 2018

HomePro

You’d think that mixed prints wouldn’t work on an ang bao, but somehow, HomePro pulls it off with a bit of Peranakan flair.

Verdict: HOT

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