Tik Tok is a social media phenomenon. With over 689 million monthly users worldwide, it’s no surprise that it is a highly influential platform.

The concept of TikTok is simple. You upload short, eye-catching videos, whether that be an edit of your favourite actor in a movie, or a video of you dancing and having fun. The app lets people have creative expression and is a place where communities can come together.

There are thousands of different elements and niches on TikTok, one that I often find myself emersed in often is known as ‘Fashion TikTok’. Essentially a section of the app that has outfit inspiration and creative, new looks. It is here that many of the current fashion trends are set. Oversized hoodies, tennis skirts and argyle prints are all examples of fashion trends that were introduced to the public via TikTok. However, like many social media platforms, TikTok perpetuates trend culture, which forces people to conform to the new trends for fear of being labelled as ‘too basic’.

On different social media platforms such as YouTube I know that there has been a huge audience for ‘Try on hauls.’ Which essentially involves a Youtuber buying extortionate amounts of clothing from big retailers such as Asos and Shein. Which is both horrific for the environment and is a huge contributor to fast fashion.

Currently on TikTok, influencers have made it ‘trendy’ to buy second hand clothes. Thousands of influencers on the app are encouraging their followers to embrace the new ‘Vintage’ look. Embracing the iconic fashion moments from the 90s and 2000s, it’s clear that older styles are making a comeback. In particular, Y2K has made a huge return, with 1.5 billion videos under that hashtag. Where better to find old designs and make them new then your local charity shop or second-hand clothes websites such as Depop, Vinted and Ebay.

Depop is an international second-hand clothes website. Ever since its creation in 2011, Depop has amassed over 15 million users worldwide who buy and sell predominately second-hand clothes. I spoke to Vintage Club UK, a business based in London which has over 32,000 followers on its Depop Platform. It offers ‘affordable, branded clothing which is sustainable to the world.’ Vintage Club described Depop as ‘a steady grower’, claiming that Depop is ‘a super simple platform’ and that essentially ‘more stock = more sales.’ I was intrigued as to how the pandemic affected businesses on Depop. According to Vintage Club UK, ‘The pandemic positively affected all online e commerce business.’

I also spoke to Georgina from Blue Trax, a small business on the platform. Georgina sources beautiful vintage pieces and sells them on. I wanted to know her thoughts on fast fashion. She told me that ‘We have to realise that preserving vintage clothes is the most sustainable option. We can still be on trend by simply browsing shops like mine.’

Georgina is right. In order to be trendy we shouldn’t have to buy tons of clothes brand new, from companies that exploit and underpay their workers. I think that this trend on TikTok is in fact a good one as it encourages people to support small businesses and charities. However, my prominent question is, is this trend genuine? Do people really buy second - hand for the good of the environment or because it has now become ‘trendy’ to do. Moreover, as much as I encourage anyone reading this article to start buying second hand, I want you to be doing it for the right reasons.                               

With Special Thanks to:

VINTAGE CLUB's Shop - Depop

Georgina 's Shop - Depop