Shein’s Massive Popularity Comes at a Cost

Just before Christmas, Mélo—a lifestyle blogger from Paris known for promoting body positivity—uploaded a video on Instagram showing off shiny, glittering party dresses from Shein, a fast-fashion e-retailer from China.

”Which one do you prefer for Christmas and which one for New Years?” the French content creator asked her 75,000 followers as she twirled, strutted, and smiled at the camera. At the bottom of the caption, she tagged Shein, directing her viewers to a 15% discount on all their clothing orders.

Mélo is one of the thousands of influencers on TikTok and Instagram who works with Shein to post “haul” videos, where she tries on piles of clothes, invites followers to visit Shein’s pop-ups, and promotes their sal…