Thredup boycott marketing thrown at fast fashion SHEIN


Chinese fast fashion brand, Shein has rapidly become one of the popular brands among Gen Z around the world in recent years.

The strong reason to attract the young generation worldwide is their affordable price range. The average price is about $10 -$20 which is cheaper than any other well-known fast fashion brands such as ZARA, H&M, and Forever 21.


Shein is headquartered in Guangzhou and has a huge warehouse where they ship their products globally.

They dropped about 6000 new items every day based on AI data analysis, and its business model has been built so that the products will be sold out in about 25 days.

Another reason that led to SHEIN’s popularity is their PR strategies using social media marketing.

SHEIN’s social media account currently has over 250 million followers. They conducted worldwide Influencer marketing on Instagram and TikTok to acquire more followers during COVID-19. They attracted the attention of teens and 20s by mobilizing a large number of celebrities which led to significant growth in their business.

Concurrently they are actively developing live commerce overseas, which has become a big boom in China, leading to an increase in the purchase rate. Shein held a Pop-up store in San Francisco from June 24th through 26th, however, Thredup called on their customers to boycott this event.

Thredup is an American secondhand apparel resale platform that has been rapidly growing in the last few years.

Companies such as Thredup now allow anyone to resell fashion items that they no longer wear.

Thredup, which has been contributing to recycling and sustainable fashion daily, called on customers to boycott Shein’s Pop-up event and tried to turn the customer to the second-hand market.

Thredup is a company based in Oakland near the San Francisco Bay Area, so they used emails and social campaigns to promote their sales. They sent push notifications saying, “DON’T GO SHEIN POP-UP”. Also, they offered discounts and free shipping to customers who promised not to go.

Thredup also posted a picture of the landfill on their Instagram(@Thredup) with the message “DON’T GO SHEIN POP-UP”.

Thredup Instagram

This provocative act became a hot topic among shoppers just hours after Shein’s Pop-up started, and Thredup received many supportive comments from their followers.

This critical behavior toward another company is unprecedented and it might be a new marketing example of an apparel company using the issue of sustainability to attract customers.

Generally speaking, GenZ has been told that they have high awareness about sustainability, so how did fast fashion Shein attract many young people and increase its sales?

It is said that concerns about inflation and economic recession have had a major impact on the sales of such cheap fashion items.

Many people want to purchase products from environmentally friendly companies, but on the other hand, there are various increases in the price of the product.

Ultimately, the current situation is that many consumers seek cheapness and convenience rather than awareness of sustainability.