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I Bought Clothes From Shein So You Don’t Have To

Have you ever heard of the clothing company Shein? They’re basically an online Forever 21 on steroids in my opinion. They’re known for cheap, trendy clothes with questionable quality standards and often weird sizing. I’ve looked on their site a few times and could have easily spent thousands of dollars on clothing and accessories. They even have home and beauty products???? In typical fashion, once you think about something, the FBI or whoever is watching your every move begins to put ads on your social media for that exact brand or product. After months of seeing this particular dress, I finally folded and bought it.

I’m an independent woman who makes money, but not a lot of it so the appeal of inexpensive clothing that’s currently trendy was great compared to spending hundreds on something that’ll be out of style by the next season. When picking out what I wanted to buy, I looked at a variety of “trendy” items that I knew were in but have been in for a while so I could easily make them work for a longer time period. In total, I spent $54.99 on five items, tax, and a shipping guarantee after getting a small discount (there’s always discount codes) and free shipping. I ordered everything on October 27 and my dress arrived on October 30, and my four other items arrived on November 2.

Judging the website alone, it’s similar to other online shopping sites like Romwe or Fashion Nova (should I try these stores next?) in that it’s flashy with their sales and discounts. Shein also has a rewards program that gives points every time you buy something, add your information to your account, and for every product you review, which explains why the shirt I bought has 6,068 reviews.

Thinking about the clothing, I wasn’t expecting much. I figured that this would be cheap, poorly fitting clothing. The items did smell a lot like plastic when I opened the package they came in. After letting them air out and a little spritz of Febreze, they smell okay making me think it was just the plastic bag they were shipped in that gave it the smell.

Moving onto the moment you’ve been waiting for, here is my honest review of Shein clothing items (note all prices listed were how much I paid for them):

SHEIN Ruffle Cuff Smock Dress in Burgundy size medium ($14) 

How it fits: It fit me fine and I was happy that it was long enough in the front and back but not too long since I’m short. The seam that connects the top to the actual skirt of the dress seemed to be a little high where if you had boobs any bigger than me it would hit at a weird point.

How it feels: It feels like a comfortable t-shirt style dress.

Compared to the photo: The color is more muted than the photo online.

Was it worth the price? For $14, I’m extremely happy with the dress and think it’s worth it. 

Would I recommend to a friend? Depending on their bust, I would recommend.

Rating out of 5 stars: 4.5/5

Half Zip Teddy Sweatshirt in Khaki size large ($14)

How it fits: Considering this was a size large, it doesn’t fit like a standard sweatshirt or pullover in a size large would fit. Definitely order big if you get this.

How it feels: It feels exactly like a stretchy fleece blanket. It, unfortunately, has no lining like a nicer “teddy” sweatshirt making it feel pretty cheap. Based on the material I don’t think it will make it in the washing machine either.

Compared to the photo: It definitely looks like the photo online. I have my sleeves cuffed in my photo to show the white detailing inside the sleeve.

Was it worth the price? For $14, I honestly would say no. You can find a much nicer quality fleece sweatshirt at Walmart, Kohl’s, or Marshalls for around the same price.

Would I recommend to a friend? No

Rating out of 5 stars: 1/5

SHEIN Pearl Beaded Mesh Sleeve Top in Black size medium ($12)

How it fits: When I picked this out, I knew it would be hit or miss. The shirt does fit and the sleeves are surprisingly not too small.

How it feels: The sleeves don’t feel cheap and the base of the shirt isn’t too stiff. It is a comfortable shirt to wear.

Compared to the photo: It looks exactly the same as the photo

Was it worth the price? For $12, you can’t miss this perfect shirt for upcoming holiday parties like New Year’s Eve. Even if the shirt can only be worn a few times or a pearl falls off the sleeve, I don’t feel as if I have wasted a large sum of money.

Would I recommend to a friend? Yes

Rating out of 5 stars: 4/5

Striped Pattern Fringe Hem Scarf ($12)

How it fits: This scarf is HUGE. It is pictured online without the model so I didn’t realize how giant it was going to be. I have it shown worn as a large shawl and as a standard scarf.

How it feels: It feels soft and not scratchy so it would be good for fall and winter.

Compared to the photo: It is just so huge compared to what the photo shows. The colors are a perfect match to the photo.

Was it worth the price? To an extent if you really needed a new scarf

Would I recommend to a friend? Yes and no. If you’re ordering other items, it’s a great addition but by itself I don’t think it would be worth it.

Rating out of 5 stars: 2.5/5

Cuffed Pom Pom Knit Hat (on sale for $4)

How it fits: I must have a big head because this hat is tight lol.

How it feels: It feels like a standard knit hat from any other store.

Compared to the photo: The colors and color blocking matches the photo exactly.

Was it worth the price? For $4? YES! This was a great sale bargain.

Would I recommend to a friend? Yes

Rating out of 5 stars: 4/5

Should you buy from Shein? Honestly, I’m still unsure. Would I buy something over $20 like shoes or a jacket from the site? No. There’s definitely going to be some hits and some even bigger misses. For the trendy clothes that it is, they’re definitely okay. On the bad side, Shein has received bad media due to concerns about where the clothing is coming from. It’s up to you which clothing brand selling trendy clothes to shop at considering most of them are also using sweatshops. And that’s the real tea.

Other items shown in my photos:

Shoes: Vans Slip-on in Wild Dove/True White ($50)

Jeans: Old Navy Mid-Rise Rockstar Jeans (exact pair no longer available) similar pair found here.

Tapestry: SOFTBATFY Letter Wall Tapestry Headboard Wall Art Bedspread Dorm Hanging Tapestry Home Decor (Medium, Letter) ($9.99)

A senior at Ohio University, Hannah Moskowitz is majoring in the news and information journalism track at the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. During her time there, she is president, campus correspondent and writes for Her Campus. In her free time, she writes for her personal blog: www.hannahmeetsworld.com. When she's not writing, she loves to paint, hammock with friends and take care of her plants.
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