Sunday Times Column: YouTube’s teen shopaholics are leading the way in style

 

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I went to Sainsbury’s for some Weetabix, Superdrug for some wax strips, then popped into M&S to buy control pants. Hold on, I’m doing this wrong. I’ve been trying to get my rap right so I can post my own haul-girl video to YouTube.

Haul girls — you’ve heard of them, right? The girls (and the odd boy) who make YouTube videos in which they show off items they’ve bought in the shops (aka hauled). It sounds absurd, but it’s true. In clips filmed on their laptops they sit in their bedrooms, surrounded by shopping bags.

“Let’s get into the haul!” they shout, enthusiastically pulling items out of carriers: “I got this blush-coloured dress with lace detailing that reminds me of The Sound of Music. I found this peach silk romper from Topshop; this crochet-fringe crop top from Primark; this mint dress with a faux-Peter Pan collar from Forever 21…” We’ll stop there. It would use up my whole word count if I quoted even one of their monologues in full.

Inane as this seems, there are hundreds of thousands of these videos on YouTube, and the most popular have been viewed millions of times.

Haul girls are a very modern phenomenon: the Venn children of social media and consumerism, spawned by a generation of young people who want to show off their stuff but can’t be bothered to leave the house to do it. No wonder they’re laughed at; one critic describing their pastime as “the ultimate materialistic PG porn”. But I am intrigued by haul girls. And I like what they stand for.

READ THE FULL COLUMN HERE: http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/Magazine/article1446724.ece

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