Hey everyone, It’s Meg Ann Lee and if you are shopping online AT ALL, I’m sure you have heard of Temu and their low prices for online shopping. This week we are talking about all things Temu!
What is TEMU?
Temu is a Chinese based online retailer offering low prices from over 80,000 vendors. It’s like a digital flea market. It sells EVERYTHING, whereas companies like AliExpress or Shein focus on certain niche items . The Temu app was launched first in the US September 2022. Within the next six months it launched into ten more countries and now can be accessed globally.
Temu is a sister company to Pinduoduo, a popular e-commerce site offering heavily discounted items to its residence in China.
Temu offers it’s US audience access to items from overseas warehouses. Temu’s marketing team hit Tiktok with a BANG! TikTok has influenced the rise of Temu by partnering with growing influencers and utilizing the "shop now" feature. I swear the daily spam emails I get make me want to boycott this website forever.
Why Is It So Inexpensive?
Temu keeps it’s low prices by having a mix of low quality items and having partnerships directly with manufactures cutting out the middle man retailer. Not all of the products are low quality, but you definitely are not receiving well-made, hand-crafted items, that would become family heirlooms. However, in today’s world, they are catering to most of the public who are looking for fast fashion, ever changing trends and over consumerism.
Their business practices also fall under the de minimis loophole, which allows small shipments that are valued under $800 and directly shipped to an individual to come into the U.S. without paying duties, taxes, fees, and undergoing inspection. WHAT?!? Yes. This is another reason the company can keep these prices low. Seems sketchy (but also smart) to me but this is how company’s work our current system to gain more profit.
Is Temu Ethical?
The lines are SO BLURRY here. Temu is not a manufacturing company, so they do not partake in illegal forced labor. However, there isn’t a clear way to track through ALL their vendors and their labor practices.
ANY company that supplies fast production and delivery has a major impact on the planet. Between fast shipping increasing CO2 emissions and the “Fast Fashion” craze driving up textile waste, are any of these companies “ethical”?
Does Temu Sell Fake Items?
Define "fake" lol. If you are looking to buy Apple AirPods, they are only really Apple if the item on Temu has a blue check mark. This means that they have been checked and are true to the brand. Now, you might find dupes but you usually won't find "counterfeit" items on Temu. Read about counterfeit items HERE!
I truly feel conflicted every day of my life by these types of situations. I write a blog about trends and beauty, which leads me to buying products, sharing reviews to help you decide where and on what to spend your money. Am I part of the problem? The answer is yes. The truth is we are DEEP in a cycle of over consumption where one small choice made by one person won’t change a thing but if we ALL start focusing our money on local companies, supporting our friends’ businesses and stop choosing EASY and start choosing RIGHT, we might see a change <3