With celebrities taking to the red carpet wearing vintage and Love Island dumping fast fashion in favour of pre-loved fashion partner eBay, things have not been going well for fast fashion. And just this week it has been dealt another blow as Missguided has collapsed into administration. This all begs the question, has fast fashion finally run its course?
Missguided goes into administration
Missguided has been on a slippery slope for the past few years. In 2019 the brand was met with derision after selling a £1 bikini and dresses for £5. And in 2020 we can’t forget the four part docuseries that highlighted the highs and lows at the company. However in March 2021 Missguided’s sales had soared to £300million. But by April 2022 Founder and CEO Nitin Passi had stepped down. The company confirmed it was cutting 63 jobs and had appointed administrator Teneo.
Over the past couple of weeks it has been reported that Missguided has not been paying its suppliers. The brand has had supply chain problems, increased competition from similar brands like Shein and Boohoo, and an increase in freight costs. The owner of one factory in China said they’ve been unable to pay their suppliers as they’re owed £800,000.
It was then announced on 1st June that Missguided has been bought for £20m by Sports Direct owner Frasers Group.
Has fast fashion run its course?
While it is tempting to see Missguided’s misfortune as a win against fast fashion, I don’t think it is as simple as that. Even though Missguided is clearly in troubled waters, ultra-fast fashion brands like Shein show no sign of suffering the same fate. In fact, Shein has recently been valued at £79bn. And, the site uploads 700 to 1,000 items each day which is just staggering.
When it comes to fast fashion there is no real brand loyalty at play either as consumers will quite happily switch allegiances. After all, the offerings are pretty much the same at the likes of Boohoo, PLT, Nasty Gal etc.
The brand’s collapse has highlighted how fragile the fast fashion model is as there is a definite rise in the number of consumers who are concerned about sustainability. These shopper are moving away from throwaway fashion towards wardrobes that last for multiple seasons. There has also been a considerable rise in buying pre-owned fashion and renting your outfits.
When it comes to Missguided, I just hope that the brand’s suppliers will be paid what they are rightfully owed.