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  • Paul


... Paul

Ultra fast fashion. Shein is the world’s largest fashion retailer. And not necessarily from the most responsible end. For example, Reuters writes in its article “Shein…has not made public disclosures about working conditions along its supply chain that are required by law in the United Kingdom, and the company until recently falsely stated on its website that conditions in the factories it uses were certified by international labor standards bodies.” (…). This is just one example of several ambiguities and outright mistakes in the company’s operations.

Its business model is built around overconsumption. The more customers spend, the more exclusive promotions they are awarded. It has also created a special “haul” phenomenon on social media, where consumers present how much stuff they could buy with little money. This doesn’t sound like a very responsible thing to do. This reminds me of Shein’s official agenda: “we make fashion accessible to everyone”, which can be thought of as, for example, that in order for the products to be accessible to everyone, they must be very cheap. And because they are cheap, they are not very high quality made, in good working conditions, considering the environment and so on. Poor-quality clothes are then easily thrown in the trash and are not returned because you can get new ones cheaply.

On their website, Shein announces many points related to responsibility (e.g. the conditions of employees, the environment and the company’s social responsibility) where they would have things in order. However, referring to the previous Reuters article, they have reported incorrect statements on their website, so in light of that, even these claims of responsibility may require a more critical examination.

Their website also has sustainability reports for 2021 and 2022 available, so maybe they are also trying to do something about it.

There would be a lot to write and research about Shein in the area of ​​responsibility. I hope things go in a better direction and next time there would be more positive things to say.