Internet split on spending $700 on fast fashion company Shein over ‘quality’ clothes

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Fast fashion retailer Shein sparked debate online after a Twitter user argued that people who spend $700 on the brand’s low-priced clothes can afford to buy clothes from more expensive brands and durable.

The Chinese e-commerce company is well known for its inexpensive and plentiful clothing options. Since its founding in 2008, Shein is now valued at $100 billion, making it as valuable as Elon Musk’s SpaceX and worth more than fashion giants Zara and H&M.

However, Shein has recently been accused of stealing ideas from independent designers, faced allegations of exploiting their workers, and is seen as a major contributor to the environmental damage caused by the fast fashion industry.

While the fast fashion industry faces criticism from consumers and fashion experts, many people often turn to companies like Shein for its inclusiveness and accessibility. The affordability of Shein’s large inventory (about 314,877 new styles have been added in the US this year) makes current fashion trends available to low-income people, and plus-size people say Shein is one of the few online retailers to carry sizes larger than XL. However, some people think that’s no excuse.

“If your Shein cart total is $700, might as well spend that money on quality parts,” Twitter user @SOruthless_305 wrote on Sunday, April 17. Their tweet has since received 232,900 likes and over 3,749 quote tweets from other users.

“If you can afford to lose $700 on shein, you can afford not to contribute to fast fashion,” one person replied.

“Shein is WORSE than the usual fast fashion retailers and it’s not even close,” someone else said.

Many consumers have defended their choice to buy from fast fashion sites like Shein because it allows them to spend money on a whole new wardrobe, rather than waiting to save on a few more expensive pieces.

“Why spend that on 1 item when I can have 37?” asked one user.

“Why would I spend $700 on a Gucci or Chanel piece when I can spend almost less than $20 anywhere else FOR AN ENTIRE OUTFIT!!!” writes another person. “At this point just buy whatever you want if you like it, get it, I’m not showing up for anyone”.

Over the past two decades, clothing production has doubled. The world consumes around 80 billion new clothes each year, while the average number of times an item has been worn has decreased by 36% overall. In fact, the Saturday night post reported that the average American throws away about 81 pounds of clothing per year. That’s more than $500 billion worth of clothing lost each year due to clothing underuse and lack of recycling, according to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

Shein, headquartered in Guangzhou, ships to 250 countries around the world – an impressive number considering that the fashion industry is responsible for eight percent global carbon emissions.

Many people argue that the problem is not buying Shein products, but the overconsumption of clothes. Does a person really need 100 new clothes for all four seasons?

“I know sustainable fashion is unattainable and most sustainable brands don’t include size,” one person tweeted. “The problem here is overconsumption. a brand like shein only encourages and rewards overconsumption.

“If you can afford to buy $700 from Shein (it’s like 100+ clothes), then you can afford to buy fewer pieces from a more expensive sustainable brand,” someone said. ‘other. “No one needs more than 100 new clothes per season.”

The Independent contacted Shein for comment.

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