FEATURE — November 22, 2020 at 8:26 pm

Depop is growing in popularity among teens stuck at home

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Graphic by Andrea Hurtado

As Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students are participating in more at-home activities, there is a growing trend: shopping and selling on Depop. Depop is a social shopping app where users can purchase or sell anything from Champion hoodies to thrifted finds to Michael Kors purses and have it shipped to them within days.

During the COVID-19 crisis, it has become difficult to shop in-person, due to the risk of contracting the virus. Because of this pandemic, in place of in-person retail, teenagers have turned to Depop to satisfy their shopping desires–and some of them have even discovered more unique items online than they would have at the physical mall.

“I’ve found a lot of pieces that other people thrifted, like statement jackets, vintage camis, hand-made pearl necklaces and furry tote bags,” senior Haleigh Grose said.

Thrift store items, which often involve old clothing trends, are very much prevalent on Depop, as many retailers know that these items are something their customers want more of.

“[There is] a huge amount of old trends and unique styles [that] can be found on Depop, like really cool jewelry that you wouldn’t be able to find at the mall,” senior Alexander Denisov said.

At the physical mall, there are not a large amount of jewelry pieces that are linked to unique historical stories, like there are on Depop. For instance, teenagers have been discovering Native American tribal rings, Spirit of ‘76 pendants, Women’s Section Legion pins and much more.

There is also a growing support for small businesses. Some MSD students say that it provides more satisfaction to buy from depop sellers rather than from large corporations.

“I definitely feel more satisfied if I support a small Depop seller rather than a more mainstream company because especially now, I think it’s really hard for small businesses to make profits. Knowing that I’m supporting them for their hard work is rewarding,” junior Sarah Kathuria said.

During the pandemic, many small businesses have taken a profit loss due to decreased foot traffic. A lot of these business owners have begun to sell items on Depop. Since students know that these Depop sellers may be having a hard time, they feel satisfied purchasing from them.

Depop allows aspiring business owners to begin pursuing their dreams and allows an opportunity for those seeking to buy items in their price range. It also includes tech-savvy features such as allowing users to message sellers, filter item searches and create biographies on their profiles.

“I think Depop is a really cool concept. It gives a lot of people opportunities to start their own business and gives people the opportunity to buy clothes at a cheaper price,” sophomore Karishma Advani said.

Because of these features, this app is now being seen as a replacement for physical malls in some cases. Though both of these are two different shopping experiences, many teenagers prefer making quick purchases to the hassle of leaving their homes, especially during the pandemic.

“I personally prefer Depop and online shopping apps to purchase my items because the clothes are cheaper and they are most likely vintage clothes that are no longer sold in [real] stores,” senior Emily Tovar said. “For me, shopping at the mall appears to be a hangout type of activity while Depop is more of a productive shopping experience.”

This has led to some students starting their own Depop shops. The application can serve as an editorializing part-time job–even while studying in high school or college. It is seen as a place to make money off of clothing, recycle clothing and become an entrepreneur.

The app teaches student sellers how to properly communicate with customers and learn good customer service tips that can be beneficial for future jobs. 

“When someone likes an item of mine, I send them a message that offers a discount or free shipping to create an incentive for them to buy that item,” Tovar said.

Acquiring editorial skills is very important in the world we live in today. Even while there is a pandemic happening, students are making the most out of their days by safely being productive on Depop.

Depop provides teenagers with something to take part in, aside from school. It is growing in popularity, with an increasing number of users each day. It continues to make an impact on many students, as more and more are buying or selling on this app.

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Angelina Lalchandani is a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High school and is an Eagle Eye staffer. She loves fashion and plans to pursue that field in the future.

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