Earlier this year I started spending money at SHEIN after years of checking out the site and seeing the products they have for sale. I've promised an honest SHEIN review for months now, and I think it's about time that I finally put my thoughts about SHEIN out into the open. So, without further ado, let's chat about SHEIN!
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SHEIN Sizing Basics
Okay, SHEIN is infamous for not having the best sizing in the world. My experience is pretty on par with what I heard about SHEIN before I bought.
I have to check the sizing on everything before I buy. EVERYTHING. Sometimes the size charts are also a little hard to read because they aren't very clear on exactly what you are measuring. Overall, I wish the sizing was more forthcoming. If you are buying from the US website, it would make sense to add US Sizing, right? But you have to dig deep to get somewhat of an understanding of the size you are buying.
I can't tell you how many times I wanted to do some shopping on SHEIN, and then I just gave up. I would often give up because shopping on the site was so stressful and I didn't want to end up purchasing a bunch of duds that didn't fit.
It feels like each order I've made with SHEIN I've had one or two things that didn't fit quite right. It's usually because something is too tight, and it's almost always in one spot like the chest and armpits area and nowhere else.
I believe you can return things with SHEIN, but I've always just kept it. I'll probably donate all the SHEIN items that didn't fit me at one point.
SHEIN Shipping Debate
Another thing I've heard about SHEIN is that the shipping is horrid, but I can't honestly say that's true. In my experience with the three orders I've placed on the site, things come pretty quickly. This isn't a Wish situation where you could be waiting months. I've never waited more than a little bit under four weeks for an order to get to my doorstep.
I've noticed that SHEIN orders typically come from a couple of places for me in the United States. Sometimes they come from China, and those orders can take a while longer, but they will also come from New York or California, and those orders tend to be quicker.
Most of the stuff I've ordered from SHEIN has come to me in under two weeks.
I also like the fact that they ship things out in multiple orders if that will help speed up the shipping process for you.
Lastly, one time when shipping was a bit slower than usual they sent me 500 SHEIN points without me having to do anything at all. Those 500 SHEIN points got me $5 off an order, so I thought that was pretty kind of them, especially because when they sent the points, I wasn't even thinking about how long the shipping was taking.
Funny story about this wine, it sucked, and it's still sitting in my fridge from this photo shoot months ago.
SHEIN Clothing Quality
So, the thing with SHEIN is you never know the quality you will get. Some stuff is fantastic in the quality department, and some stuff is subpar. I've received multiple items that I just adored, but some items kept me wanting more and felt like they were made of confusing and thin fabric.
An example of both confusing and pretty thin fabric was the dress I showed here a few months ago when I talked about how to focus on self-care when you feel like you don't deserve it. It was a beautiful dress, but the tie was in a strange place and took forever to figure out. Plus, the dress was a little bit thin, not see-through, just thin.
Some of my favorite pieces have been a cute palm print dress I showed y'all a few weeks ago; the pearl-embellished top I showed y'all earlier this year; and the red striped dress that I am showing y'all today.
Overall, though, sometimes it feels like they make pieces out of too scratchy fabric or the cheapest fabric they can find.
If you do a little digging though, you can always check out the reviews, and see other people styling it. You should also check out the material in the description of each piece so you will get a better idea of what material each item will be made from.
SHEIN Ethical Dilemmas
Last, but not least, we have to talk about the elephant in the room.
Going to be a mom here for a second.
There's a reason that the prices on SHEIN are so low.
When you shop at places like SHEIN, you know very little about how they run the factories behind their products. More than likely, they keep their prices low by paying their workers less than satisfactory wages that most of us would never personally take in the United States.
At the same time, though, the prices are nice, but the stuff behind the price might not be. This is not a SHEIN problem though. Do you think our phones cost $500 to make and they make a modest profit off of each one? The entire world has a business model of getting prices to make items as low as humanly possible.
This is just something that has to be in the back of your mind as you are picking up a top or a dress from SHEIN. Some people put a lot on the line behind your products every single day.
My Verdict: SHEIN (Basically) Sells Instagram Clothes
In my opinion, Instagram clothes are clothes that only look good for the ‘gram or an occasional wear. I am not going to say that they sell absolutely no quality clothes. Some pieces are made with nice quality fabric. On the other hand, they also sell a patterned skirt that doesn't line up on both sides (see the skirt in my Erin Condren post from last week.)
My Tips For Purchasing On SHEIN
So, here are my biggest tips for shopping:
- Test it out on a sale day so you can at least save money while shopping.
- Read the size charts to the best of your ability, they can be confusing, but try to make your best guess.
- Try to look at pieces on actual people if you can. Sometimes you will have to jump the gun and hit purchase, but try to look at reviews and people wearing items first.
- Know that you get what you pay for.
- Keep shopping at SHEIN to an occasional level and invest in pieces from other companies that will last.
- Give yourself time! The SHEIN site can be overwhelming, so don't expect to have a quick shopping trip, give yourself the time you need to browse the site.
I hope that this article has helped you as you consider shopping at SHEIN.
I'd love to know your personal experience shopping with SHEIN if you have one!