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The brand that made the 'shirt of the year' sparks debate: Netizens ponder whether Uniqlo is really 'high-end'

By AYIE LICSI Published Dec 27, 2022 6:22 pm

Is Uniqlo a high-end clothing brand?

Debate about the topic sparked as the Japanese brand made the rounds online for its polo that has been dubbed the "shirt of the year" by Filipinos.

During UST's Paskuhan, several people were spotted wearing Uniqlo's Rugger Polo shirt. Netizens even joked that this was some sort of new "uniform" among the students.

@briancroots Uniqlo of Santo Tomas #paskuhan #paskuhan2022 #UST ♬ WAG KA NANG MAWALAAAAAAA - Rhen

The shirt itself is a green collared tee with bold stripes, which is worth P999 and currently on sale for P790.

Because of the trending shirt, people also started talking about whether the price of clothes from the fast fashion brand is really affordable.

"I remember talking to a Japanese local when Uniqlo came to PH and they're surprised that it's treated by many here as higher end. In Japan, they consider it as one of their cheapest go-tos for affordable basic wear—shows a huge gap between our cost of living + we're much less developed," said one user on Twitter.

One netizen brought up how the quality of shirts from the Japanese brand is of different quality compared to other brands.

Others raised how those that don't consider Uniqlo as "high-end" are probably more privileged.

"If you don't consider Uniqlo as 'high end' then good for you because you're probably in upper middle class or above. But to say 'no one' is treating it as a 'high-end brand reeks of so much privilege. For a lot of Filipinos, it is, okay? Can we be not so out of touch?" added another.

"Lmao P590-P790 for a single shirt isn't cheap for most Filipinos. Labas labas rin sa bubbles of privilege niyo minsan," said one user.

While acknowledging that Uniqlo is a fast fashion brand, one netizen said that it might not be considered 'cheap' in the Philippines compared to its country of origin.

"Magkaka-level ang Uniqlo, Zara, Pull&BEar, Bench, Penshoppe, Oxygen. All TECHNICALLY are affordable in their countries of origin. 'Cheap clothing.' Now, ibang convo yung affordability and mark-ups, etc. Buying power aside, these brands are not 'high-end'... technically," argued one netizen.

For comparison, a polo shirt from Bench can go from P399 to P599, while ones from Uniqlo range from P590 to 990.