Gen Z reseller sparks outrage by selling ‘vintage’ Forever 21 shorts for $298

Gen Z reseller sparks outrage by selling ‘vintage’ Forever 21 shorts for $298

Millennials are feeling older than ever after one Gen Z reseller listed a pair of Forever 21 shorts as “vintage” on Depop for nearly $300.

In a viral video posted to TikTok, a woman named Kiana (@kaym0neyyy) exclaimed that “Depop sellers have lost their minds” after she came across a pair of sequin leopard mini shorts on the online fashion marketplace.

“Forever 21 RARE vintage sequin leopard print shorts, identical to Charlotte Russe! I’m so tempted to keep, price is FIRM,” the description for the shorts read on Depop.

As Kiana showed screenshots of the Depop listing, she asked her TikTok followers to guess exactly how much the Forever 21 shorts were priced at. “What do you think these shorts should go for, considering it’s Forever 21 and it’s from probably 10 years ago? What do we think these shorts went for at Forever 21, and then what do we think this girl is selling them for?” Kiana said in the clip, which has been viewed more than two million times since it was posted on 13 May.

“If you guess $298, you would be correct,” Kiana continued, revealing the jaw-dropping price tag. “How do you have the audacity to take a Forever 21 article of clothing and sell it for $298? Absolutely freaking insane.”

She captioned the video: “These Depop sellers must be stopped.”

In the clip, Kiana explained that she came across the listing for the “vintage” pair of shorts after watching a viral video from its Depop seller, who goes by Jules. Jules, whose Depop username is @jbeescloset, recently went viral when she shared that she sold a yellow sequin mini dress to singer Sabrina Carpenter for her 25th birthday party.

The “Espresso” singer wore the How To Lose a Guy in 10 Days-inspired dress for the occasion, which her stylist Jared Ellner confirmed that he sourced on Depop. Jules explained in a TikTok video that Carpenter’s stylist had reached out to her on Depop about the vintage Cache mini dress, which she sold to him for $265.

Jules’ video prompted several fashion lovers to visit her Depop online store, where they discovered similar overpriced listings for clothing items with less than luxury labels. Some TikTok users were outraged over a pair of “rare vintage blue” shorts from Hollister, which were listed for $98.

“WHO IS PAYING THESE PRICES?!!” one person wrote, while another TikTokker commented: “As someone who grew up during the heyday of Hollister, those shorts weren’t even $98 back then! More like $35-40 and they were always on sale!”

Others explained that they grew up shopping at Forever 21, before the retailer filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and closed a large number of stores. The company gained popularity in mid-2000s to the 2010s for its low prices and quick turnover of inventory. Forever 21’s sales peaked in 2015, earning $4.4bn in global sales that year.

Some Millennials were simply shocked that clothing items from their adolescence were already being labelled as “vintage,” like one person who asked: “How is anything from Forever 21 rare?”

“I’ve worked at F21 literally the most expensive thing I’ve seen is sold like at $34.99,” another user claimed.

Indeed, it seemed that someone had purchased the pair of “vintage” Forever 21 shorts after Jules listed the item as “sold” on her Depop page. Although, some TikTok users weren’t convinced the shorts were actually purchased, as the platform allows sellers to mark items as sold manually.

Depop, founded in 2011, is an e-commerce company where fashion lovers can source vintage pieces and beloved items from marketplace sellers. In recent years, however, the platform has faced criticism for its “Depop resellers” – who mark up the prices of the clothing they had purchased for much less.

Last year, one 19-year-old Depop seller received backlash when she listed several vintage finds for high prices. Jacklyn Wells, who runs the Depop storefront Jack’s Vintage, was accused of being “greedy” for selling a suede coat with fur trim for $175, and another brown leather trench coat for $120.

Wells later took to Instagram to address the criticism, clarifying that she began reselling vintage clothes at the age of 16 while she lived with her sister and worked in “fast food” to earn money through high school. “Reselling pushes circular fashion, sustainable consumption and helps low-income individuals earn a living wage off of endless clothing,” she said.

The Independent has contacted Jules for comment.