Today marks the last day of fashion revolution week, but that doesn't mean that the time is over to ask brands who makes their clothes. This Fashion Revoution Week (or a little later) I've decided to focus on Shein and ask, who makes your clothes?

If you don't know what fashion revolution week, it was started after the Rana Plaza incident in 2013, a factory collapse that killed 1,138 people and injured 2000+ more and Fashion Revolution Week is a week of campaigning, events, and more pushing towards a fairer, safer, more transparent and accountable fashion industry,. This year marks ten years since the tragic, preventable, incident of Rana Plaza. Before and since then garment workers, unions, and many others worldwide have been campaigning for change in the fashion supply chain. I have more information in a blog post here.

Alongwith directly supporting and amplifying the voices of garment workers and unions working directly to improve conditions on the fashion supply chains, Fashion Revolution is also about asking brands "Who Made My Clothes?" and putting pressure on at a consumer side for more transparency, saferty, and fair pay in fashion supply. And that's the aim here.

Why SheIn?

SheIn is a fast fashion giant, arguably the biggest brand around at the moment. If you've been on social media in the last few years, especially TikTok then you've definitely seen SheIn about, they're one of the main brands used in massive haul videos and they release thousands of new styles onto their website every single day.

Screencapture from UNTILD: Inside the Shein Machine, Channel 4 Documentaries.

But they're not transparent.

If you head to their website right now you can find their page on social responsibility, which has a very good looking report talking about auditing of 700 factories, which looks good on the surface, but 83% of these factories had issues that required immediate action.

Have SheIn done anything to tackle these issues? This report is now over a year out of date and there little information about their action to tackle issues, just that they've done audits. I am especially dubious about any action taken a recent channel 4 documentary looking into shein supplier factories.

This report found that shein workers were being paid just 3p per garment made, working 18 hour days and getting one day off a month. If they made a mistake then their pay could be docked by 3/4 for the day, for each mistake meaning multiply mistakes could mean no pay. I think I'd be making a fair few mistakes if I worked 126 hour weeks in stresful, pressured working conditions. It's incredibly unethical.

A lot of the findings from the investigation broke both Chinese labour laws and SheIn's own code of conduct. What about their other factories?

SheIn is all about quantity over quality too. As a charity shopper I've seen the amount of clothing in charity shops from SheIn boom over the last few years, with some shops having entire sections dedicated to the brand. Most are unbuyable, made poorly, falling apart, made of really weird materials, and will probably end up in landfill in the Global South after being given away as "charity" by countries like the UK and US. 

And all of the issues discussed so far has been without even going into all of the issues that SheIn have with stealing designs by independent brands and designers to sell for a fraction of the price. It's been happening for years and every week or two on my instagram and twitter feed I see another designer who has been ripped off.

But Shein don't seem to care about any of that, as long as they can keep pumping out thousands of pieces of clothing and making millions, what does it matter to them if their clothes end up in the bin after a few wears? Unless we make it their problem.

SheIn is valued at $64 billion, their CEO is worth £5 billion while workers make a pittance, they can afford to pay their garment workers a living wage, they can afford to be more transparent in their supply chains. And as one of the biggest players in fast fashion at the moment them changing their business model could make waves in the whole industry. Which is why I am asking them who made their clothes. Something has to change, for people and planet.

I also encourage you to ask SheIn, or any other brand who's clothes you own who made them. You can do it as a reel, an instagram post, on youtube, in their emails. Anywhere. A template from my video is below:

Hey, Shein, Who made my skirt?

So I bought this skirt second hand, it might have passed through a few hands before it came to me, but it came from you originally

Who made it?

Maybe you can't tell me who exactly made this shirt but of the 6000+ pieces you put on your site today can you tell me who made any of those? Where are they made?

Are the people who made your clothes treated fairly? Paid fairly? Do they live free from the fear of unsafe workplaces and factory collapses? Are they free from the fear of abuse from their bosses and supervisors?

Are your factories reguarly audited to ensure that no children are working in them?

Some of your workers have been reportedly earning 3p per garment, working 18 hour days, with just one day off a month. Is this the case in all of your factories? Are you tackling this issue?

SheIn where is the real transparency in your supply chain? can anyone shopping with you be sure that they're not directly supporting exploitation?

Who made your clothes?