[is shein legit?] my review of this too-good-to-be-true fast fashion site

Saturday, July 08, 2017

You've all seen the advertisements – cute sundresses, on-trend blouses, off-the-shoulder tank tops, all for incredibly low prices. And we've also seen the horror story articles about the silly people who order from a store oversees only to receive an item that looks nothing like what was advertised. When I saw the Shein ads, I wasn't fooled – of course it was a scam.

Somewhere along the way, I decided to poke around and see if anyone had ordered from Shein and written about their experiences. And I found a few fashion bloggers that successfully placed $150+ orders with Shein, received their orders quickly and loved what they got. So, I started to think, "OK, this could be worth a shot."

I filled my cart with 8 items that I absolutely loved and took a chance.


The basics:

• I placed my order on June 25 and it arrived on June 30. Fast! If your order is more than $100, you get free express shipping. I also paid $2.99 for insurance and free returns just in case.

• Shein accepts major credit cards and also PayPal. Not sure how much you know about PayPal but they are great about guaranteeing purchases and I knew if I paid with PayPal, I would be safe if my order turned out to be a total nightmare.

• Have a tape measurer on you or be familiar with your actual measurements – not the sizes you normally wear. I sized up in some clothes and sized down in others, although for the most part, I stuck with my usual size. There are some pieces where you won't be so lucky, especially if you are busty or have large hips.


What I ordered:

This bell-sleeved palm frond print dress.


I ordered this because I saw it on a fashion Instablogger I follow and thought it was too cute. I wasn't sure if it was me but figured it would be fun for one of the wedding events I have in the next few months and maybe even for work. I also think the palm frond trend is so worth following.

It fit perfectly and was the perfect length. The fabric came very wrinkled but I think if I steam it once, it should be OK. I love the color and the bell sleeves. This was the most expensive piece I purchased at $24.


I ordered this one because I loved the ruffled hem and the black-and-white gingham. Gingham is high up on my list of most-loved patterns, but I am always hesitant to purchase because it's a summer print. But this top was only $9 so I added it to my cart. And I loved it! I've worn it once already with white pants and my nude heels, and I think it is going to be so cute all summer and even into fall if I throw on a cardigan. The worst thing about this shirt was a few stray threads on the hem.

This black cold shoulder tank top.


I ordered this because I wanted to try the cold shoulder trend without shelling out a lot of money. Out of all of the clothes, this one probably feels the cheapest – the material is very thin – but I don't feel like it's a waste of my money. It cost $12 and isn't see-through, just thin. I love the sleeves and the straps are easily adjusted to be longer or shorter. It's a little shorter in front than I prefer but nothing crazy.


This dress is exactly like the photo, except a little less shiny. (And I think that's a good thing.) It's a little longer on me than most maxi dresses and skirts are, but if I wear heels, I'll be fine. This dress feels like a really high quality piece for only $23. The zipper is real and doesn't get stuck easily and the fabric is really, really nice. I love how it moves and feel like a total princess! This might be one of the dresses I pull out for a wedding coming up.


I honestly only bought this top because I figured I could use a black blouse, and it was $10. It's such a cute and flattering blouse! It is super wrinkly but I love the bell sleeves and the exposed zipper in the back, which isn't stiff at all and didn't get caught on the fabric. Again, this chiffon fabric is pretty thin, similar to the cold shoulder top, but it doesn't feel cheap and isn't see-through.


I think everyone has seen this two-piece set on Facebook and has wanted to buy it. I had a girl walk up to me in the grocery store while I was wearing it and compliment me on it, saying she's had it in her shopping cart for a week but wasn't sure if it was legit and now that she's seen it on me, she has to buy it. This two-piece set was $18, and considering I can wear the shorts and the shirt separate from each other, I am so here for it. The fabric is a little slicker than I thought – more like a wetsuit or a bathing suit – but it's soft and hangs well. I love the pockets and the shorts are not see-through!

I was so excited about this blouse that I didn't take a full outfit picture, just threw it on and ran out the door. I absolutely loved this $14 find and am buying it in the other two colors, too. The fabric is lightweight and it breathes – feels like linen – without being see-through. The shape of the top is so cute and I just loved how it flowed. I can't wait to wear this all summer long and then to pair it with denim and boots in the fall! 


Oh my gosh, this shirt. It was $13 so I added it to my cart for the sleeves – I'm a sucker for ruffle sleeves – but when it arrived, I fell in love with all of it! The gingham and stripes are so fun together (I love pattern mixing!) and it feels a little dressier than your average t-shirt without losing the comfort. This was great.

My advice:

Read the measurements and measure yourself. Don't order your usual size just because you think it'll work! You may regret it. I sized up in a couple pieces because I knew my sizing.

• If it doesn't have reviews or pictures, I would be more hesitant before purchasing. Read the reviews! You can see when you're scrolling through if an item has reviews – it's a little star icon underneath the picture – so you don't get all hung up on the perfect dress just to find out no one has reviewed it yet. Since I had such a great experience, I am more likely to risk it on items that don't have reviews.

• Look for a sale or a coupon code. I got 25% off my order because I ordered over $100. Right now, they're offering $5 to $30 off an order.

• If you can order a lot at once, do it. You'll get a bigger discount and qualify for the free express shipping, which will be far more worth it than waiting two to three weeks for your order to arrive.

• Order the pieces that you know you'll love for the season but might not reach for again once the trend has died down, or pieces that you want to take a chance on to see if they're for you – like the cold shoulder top. I wouldn't use Shein to buy classic wardrobe staples – I've washed two items already and they held up great, but I don't know if their clothes can withstand too much wear before falling apart.


Have you ordered from Shein before? What was your experience? I can't wait to shop again! 


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