Newest Review: ... quality of clothing is excellent. Pretty much everything I have bought in Uniqlo has washed well and held its shape. Style Uniql... more
My favourite shop!
Member Name: 85fudge
Advantages: Great value, wide range of items, good quality
Disadvantages: Shops are only in the south-east
Uniqlo first opened in Japan in 1984, originally called "Unique Clothing Warehouse". The name Uniqlo came as a contraction from "Unique Clothing". The first UK store opened in 2002 and this number has since grown to 14. There are over 700 stores in Japan.
I see Uniqlo somewhere in between Gap and Muji: they stock the bright colours of Gap but also have the Japanese aesthetic and simplicity of Muji. There's something for most people in Uniqlo: from funky printed t-shirts to more classic pieces too. I also detect a hint of American Apparel in there, but it's much cheaper (and I find the things fit better in Uniqlo!). I think Uniqlo is aimed at many ages from teenagers to 35 year olds. In my local store I see people of all ages, and it's due to the simplicity and range of the garments that Uniqlo has such a wide appeal.
- What is sold in Uniqlo?
They stock men's and women's clothes and they are best known for their extensive range of basics:
T-shirts: They stock virtually every type of t-shirt you can imagine in a rainbow of colours. I find the colours do change according to the season. For example I've discovered that they tend to stock brighter shades in the summer, so I'm unable to buy tops in my favourite shades of navy blue and grey. I remedy this by buying things when I see ready for when I actually need them. The cotton they use is very smooth and excellent quality and I have never had a t-shirt shrink or lose its shape.
Jeans: These also come in every type of shape you can imagine (straightleg, bootcut, skinny etc) and as well as stocking the usual indigo and black, they often come in bright colours too! One downside is that they only come in one leg measurement but they do offer an alteration service.
Merino wool: They hold an incredible range of cardigans, jumpers and dresses made of beautiful merino wool in the most stunning colours. I personally have several wool dresses that have lasted very well and have not bobbled at all. I would just tell you to wash them by hand as one of mine shrunk in the wash (my fault - it said hand wash).
As well as other basics like leggings, vests, and tights, Uniqlo stocks great one off items that they don't repeat the next year. I have a beautiful long-sleeved purple dress with a velvet trim that I bought three years ago, and also a couple of empire line summer dresses that are incredibly useful. I go into my local Uniqlo regularly looking for special items like these and snap them up as soon as I see them as I know they won't be back the next year!
Tops come in XS - XL, and trousers come in sizes 6 - 16 and 30 - 36 inch for men. I find the clothes fit me very true to size. I am a size 8, and buy either size XS or S in their tops depending on how I want them to fit.
I can honestly say that I find Uniqlo clothes wear very well and have many items that I've washed countless times and still have plenty of wear left. The dyes they use seem to really last well and clothes don't fade. Also I find things keep their shape well. You can't compare Uniqlo to cheap shops like Primark (although their prices are sometimes similar). Uniqlo clothes are made to last and they fit very well.
Uniqlo is very good value. T-shirts cost about £4.99, long sleeve t-shirts £7.99 and there are often offers such as "buy 2 for £12" which often saves a couple of pounds. The more luxurious items such as wool jumpers do cost a fair bit more but this is to be expected due to the materials used.
- The shops
The shops are always very clean, bright and spacious. The clothes are well organised so it's easy to find what you're looking for. Items like t-shirts tend to be folded up on metal shelves and jeans, dresses and other items are hung up. Some items such as leggings and vests come in plastic bags. They usually have one in each size hanging up next to the sealed ones so customers can try them on without opening up a new pack. Whenever I've been into a Uniqlo there is usually someone folding and tidying.
- Customer Service
I have found the staff to be very polite and professional. There always seems to be someone manning the changing rooms, and queues never seem to be much of a problem as they usually put another person on the till if it's busy. One thing that annoys me slightly is that they don't give a student discount on multi-buy offers or sale items. They always point this out very politely but it doesn't stop me asking again the next time with a hopeful smile!
I buy a large proportion of my clothes from Uniqlo and personally like their dresses. I don't dress head-to-toe in Uniqlo but find that their cheap basics can look great dressed up with the right accessories. If you like simple, well-cut garments then you will love this shop. The stores are all in the south-east so if you live elsewhere in the country, take a look at their website www.uniqlo.co.uk where they do hold a good range of items. I hope they have plans to expand in the future.
Summary: There's something for everyone in Uniqlo
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