Aug 22, 2022
Users of TikTok and other social platforms are sharing their finds at Costco, helping to make the warehouse club a destination for bargain fashion.
The search term, “costco clothing finds,” on TikTok has 1.8 billion views. Among popular hashtags on TikTok, #costcofashion has 5.8 million views; #costcocouture, 5.1 million; and #costcoclothes, 5.3 million.
The TikTok posts showcase short videos of fashionistas bragging about finding major deals from Tommy Hilfiger, Pendleton, Puma, DKNY, Uggs, Calvin Klein, Fila and numerous other fashion, casual and active brands.
The pandemic has increased the appeal of casual and comfortable clothing that Costco heavily features on its selling floor.
“It’s all about comfort,” California-based shopper Tiffany Weis told the fashion blog Refinery29. “It’s kind of like a whole new mindset.”
The 53-year-old said she would have “never thought” to buy clothes at Costco before 2020.
Costco is also earning points for being able to secure some of fashion’s hot brands and being on-trend. The convenience of one-stop shopping and saving money holds greater appeal amid escalating gas prices and rampant inflation.
“I think a lot of people are just really interested in the affordability, the convenience and then kind of taking part of this hype, which is kind of a very interesting phenomenon for Costco,” Frances Sola-Santiago, the author of the Refinery29 article, told NPR.
The social media action, also taking place with “hauls” on Instagram and Youtube, brings Costco’s in-store treasure hunt experience online. Costco can offer a deeper breadth compared to a typical off-pricer. A deal for Hunter boots, for example, will be stacked high across a wide range of sizes.
As with off-pricers, part of the appeal is the discovery process and thrill of scoring a deal in an unexpected space.
“A lot of my clothes that I wear I get compliments on every single day,” Jennifer Maldonado, who runs the TikTok account @costcocouture, told NPR. “And I always say it’s from Costco, and I get the same response — like, a blank look on their face. Like, really — Costco? Heck, yeah.”
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Why are Costco fashion finds going viral on social media? Do you think Costco should be taking action to build on the social media buzz or would that likely backfire?
“I say let the user-generated content speak for itself. “