By Brooke Mason
SHEIN is a fast fashion e-retailer based in China. SHEIN is growing fast and is highly promoted on social media. SHEIN has used platforms like Instagram, TikTok and Snapchat to promote their business and market to young consumers. They even got a few celebrities to promote their brand. The celebrities include Khloe Kardashian, Lil Nas X, and Madelaine Persch from the show Riverdale. SHEIN continues to grow with social media influencers showing off hauls of clothes that they bought. Most of these influencers did this without a sponsorship from SHEIN. It has become so popular that everyone is buying from there. While this is a good thing for this growing business, it is not so good for the planet.
So why is everyone buying from SHEIN, besides it just being promoted so well? SHEIN’s clothing items are very inexpensive. They profit on their low prices and mass production of new pieces. “Low-cost fashion derives from Fast Fashion, a clothing production method in which companies massively produce clothing using current trends. In 2020, the business on average released over 10,000 new items monthly and launched 150,000 new items that year.” (Fortune) They also have been known to copy designs from independent clothing designers. They use low-quality fabric to make their clothing items to keep their prices low. The quality of the clothes is not good at all. The awful thing about that is you are purchasing an already ripped or messed up piece of clothing that will go right to the trash.
How is this affecting the environment? “The fashion industry is the second biggest polluter in the world, and fast fashion brands like SHEIN are a key part of that pollution. The fashion industry is responsible for more than 10 percent of carbon emissions and consumes approximately 100 million tons of oil every year. The process for making a year’s worth of virgin polyester churns out the same amount of CO2 as 180 coal-fired power plants – that’s around 700 million tons of CO2 annually. Reports estimate this could double again by 2030.” (Euro News) Since millions of people have been purchasing items from SHEIN, and most likely throwing them away, we are creating SO much waste just for some clothes. Eighty-five percent of our clothes end up in landfills or are burned, including unused and unsold clothes. If people continue to buy then SHEIN produces more clothes, and then more waste is created.
Don’t throw your old clothes away, donate them. Don’t buy clothes from SHEIN because it isn’t worth your money or worth it going in the trash a few months later. I got my information on this topic from Fortune and Euro News. I recommend reading them and looking more into the company SHEIN before you decide to purchase items from them.