8 Pro Tips to Shopping at SHEIN

how to shop smarter at Shein and get exactly what you want

Workwear OOTD - Fall/Winter look with black blzer with pearls with jeans

If you’ve been following me for awhile, you’ll know I’m a huge fan of shopping at SHEIN.com. They have many lust worthy items, designer brands dupes, and seasonal trendy pieces all at very affordable prices. I get more than half my wardrobe from there and especially love their dresses and special occasion wear!

While I do love shopping at SHEIN, sometimes SHEIN gets a bad rep for their sizing being bit off, or issues where material or quality weren’t quite as expected. But over the last couple years I’ve probably ordered from them over a dozen times, and through trial and error I’ve manage to learn to shop smarter at SHEIN and now virtually all my orders come as expected.

I truly believe SHEIN is worth shopping at since they’re so budget friendly and affordable, and you can actually find good quality pieces if you know what you’re looking for.

I frequently get asked for tips on SHEIN and whether SHEIN is legit, or not, so today I thought would take some time to share some tips so you can get the most out of your shopping experience at SHEIN.

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Detailed look: Black Blazer with Pearls and skinny jeans
Wearing Tweed Blazer with Contrast Trim and Pearls c/o Shein

What is SHEIN?

Before I get into my SHEIN shopping tips, I should probably explain what SHEIN is in case you’re not familiar with the online retailer. SHEIN is an online clothing store based out of China for women, kids, and men, with their biggest selection being for women. They carry fast fashion clothing, shoes, and accessories much like Forever21, Zara, H&M, but at even better prices. Many items may look like pricey designer pieces, but are very inexpensive, and following suit, are not as high quality as the original pieces as well.

So now let’s talk about what SHEIN is for, and what it’s not good for so you can understand what kind of pieces you should be shopping for.

Shopping at SHEIN is great for:

  • affordable budget friendly fashion
  • trendy pieces you don’t want to spend a lot on
  • designer dupes and look-a-like pieces
  • small accessories like hair pins, bags, and jewelry
  • one off pieces that you might wear only a few times
  • dresses and sweaters

Shopping at SHEIN isn’t good for:

  • timeless pieces that will stand the test of time
  • sturdy clothes that go through everyday wear and expect them to hold up
  • consistent sizing
Shopping Tips - tips for shopping at Shein.com OOTD- wearing a cardigan and wrap pencil skirt
Button Front Highlow Cardigan and Solid Wrap Pencil Sweater Skirt c/o Shein

8 Pro Tips to Shopping at SHEIN and
Shopping to Get What You Expect

Now that you understand what you SHEIN is good for and not, I’m going to share my pro tips so you get the best shopping experience at SHEIN, along with how to carefully your choose items so that you’ll end up happy with when they arrive.

1. Check the Sizing Measurements

This is VERY important for getting the correct sizing. In my past experiences, clothes from SHEIN tend to run small, though recently they’ve updated their sizing so that it’s pretty comparable to North American sizing. However I find that sizing does vary from item to item, which is why checking your measurements and matching them to each item is important.

For tops, the most important measurement is your chest, and for bottoms it’s your hips. These two are the most important measurements you have to get correct in order for your clothes to fit right. Also keep in mind that when they give measurements it’s of the clothing itself, not just for your size. For example I’m 36 inches in the hips, but if it’s a flowy dress, the measurement might be 40 inches, and that’s still okay. It you’re in doubt I’d always recommend to size up. Also on that note, that I find that their items are often a little shorter in the arm length and leg length and sizing up will help with that as well.

2. Read the Reviews & Look at the Photos

One of the most helpful things when it comes to shopping on SHEIN is the reviews section. SHEIN allows and encourages their customers to provide reviews. The reviews are very valuable since they provide real, candid thoughts from people who have bought the item you’re looking to purchase. Often, reviewers leave photos of what the item looks like on, and provides valuable insight with sizing details or materials. There have been so many times where reading the reviews help me decide to buy something on not. Also, seeing an item on a real person is helpful to imagining how it may look on yourself, as well as give you a more accurate look at the material/quality.

3.  Read the Description of the Item

There are 3 basic things to look for when it comes to the description of the item:  Fit Type, Details, and Fabric. By looking at these you will know how the item is suppose to fit and details on the construction and materials.

Fit Type: Shows if the item is slim, regular, or oversized.
Details: Provides info on the construction of the item.
Fabric: Tells the material of the item. This is really helpful when determining if something is going to stretch or not. If something has stretch, I will sometimes stick with my normal size, but if no stretch is provided, I might size up.

Winter outfit - checkered blazer jacket with jeans and white turtleneck
Single Button Plaid Reefer Coat c/o of Shein

4. Buy the Shipping Insurance

During the checkout process at SHEIN.com there is an option to add on shipping insurance for $2.99. This allows you to return items for free, no questions asked.  This provides reassurance that if something doesn’t fit, or isn’t up to your quality standards you can simply send it back.  Learn more about their shipping and return policy here.

5. Manage Your Expectations

If you’re someone who typically spends $50 on a top and then orders a $10 top from Shein, there’s going to be some noticeable differences in quality compared to what you’re used to. However for a $10 top, it’s still going to be quite a nice top, just don’t expect it to be on the same level as its something that’s 5 times it’s price.  I’d say 9 times out of 10 I’m really happy with the quality of the product I get based on the price. And I have seen the exact same items at Zara for double the price.

The above being said, if you’re willing to spend $30 and up on an item at Shein, I have to say the quality is really quite good. I have a few sweaters price in the $25-35 price range and they’ve lasted me a couple years so far. I also have some dresses I’ve purchased around the $50 range and they are really more like a $200 quality. So if you’re looking for more substantial pieces that will last you, spending a little more can really help with that.

6. Order Early if You’re Planning

Average shipping time is usually about a week to 2 weeks, and most of the time I’d say it comes right in the middle at a week and half. However, if you’re trying to dress for a specific event, or occasion, I’d say to order at least 3 weeks ahead just in case.  Also they have free shipping if you order more $40 so it’s not bad at all!

7.  Look for Promo Codes

As if SHEIN isn’t already cheap enough, there are almost always promo codes floating around! Here is the most recent code they have on right now for the an extra 15% off – YESMISSY15! 

8. Steam Your Clothes When You Get Them

This isn’t a shopping tip per se, but it is a something that will make a big difference! Your clothes will come packaged tightly and pressed together, which means they often come with big wrinkles and creases. It’s important for you to steam your clothes before you pass judgement on them.  For many items it will make a world of difference!

Winter outfit - checkered blazer jacket with jeans and white turtleneck
I use these tips every time I shop on Shein.com and they’ve help me make better purchases for items I truly love.  Hope you find them helpful too! Let me know if you found any great Shein.com finds of your own in the comments below. SHEIN has a huge sale on for Black Friday, so happy shopping!

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Share your thoughts...

  • lucy staquet
    November 19, 2019

    Elegant jacket, your outfits are always very chic…
    I love these very much.
    Good continution


    • Eileen
      November 25, 2019

      Thanks so much Lucy! 🙂

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