Fast fashion offers 'affordable luxury'

Fast fashion offers 'affordable luxury'
A fast fashion brand shop in Shanghai. Fast fashion brands have quickly emerged to woo Chinese consumers who are interested in style and fashion at affordable prives.

On a Friday night this spring, 26-year-old Miranda Lin in Beijing set off for a date, wearing a gray turtleneck top and pink pleated skirt from fast fashion brand Zara Espana SA, a division of Spain-based Industria de Diseno Textil SA, known as Inditex.

A regular visitor to stores featuring the fast fashion brands from Zara, H&M Hennes & Mauritz AB and Uniqlo Co Ltd, Lin said fast fashion garments are the closest she can get to the latest styles.

"The best part is that they come at a more affordable price," she said.

"Because of that, I can change my wardrobe every season and I feel confident about myself," said Lin, who occasionally purchases luxury bags and accessories to go with her fast-changing wardrobe.

Lin is among a rising number of Chinese urban consumers who have grown interested in fast fashion clothes, supporting the expansion of such brands despite the slower growth of retail sales overall in recent years.

"Fast fashion, which can also be termed 'affordable luxury', has answered the needs of a young generation of Chinese customers who are longing for international fashion and a fashion identity," said Lu Xiaoming, founder of Organic Plus, an organic makeup producer based in Shanghai.

Five years ago, an affluent customer in her 20s would be showing off a Chanel outfit. But that type of customer has become more confident, and she's looking for something that's just right for her, not just something with a pricey logo, he said.

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