Just like many of you, I love to shop at budget friendly stores like Forever 21 and H&M. I can’t tell you how excited I get when I find a banging dress from H&M and it cost me no more than $50. I also love sharing with my friends about the cutest items I find at Forever 21 for no more than $30. When it comes time, I wear those pieces with pride and even taken care of them just as good as something I paid $200 for. When it comes to shopping on a budget (whether you want to or have to) many of us feel a sense of pride because we for the most part received a good deal, right? So, why is it that whenever someone mentions the long time wallet friendly store “Rainbows” we immediately turn up our nose and cringe at the sound of the name?
If you are from Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, Manhattan, and Staten, then you know what I’m talking about.
Back in the mid to late 90’s, it was never cool to say you bought something at Rainbows because it meant that it was cheap. During that time the cool clothes were a pair of Guess jeans and Ralph Lauren polo shirts. If you didn’t have name brand then you better not mention anything about Rainbow or you would risk getting ridiculed by the mean girls during lunch time.
Rainbows was one of the first chain stores that carried both straight and plus sizes before other brands starting doing so. Even with all their polyester and itchy fabrics they manage to produce cute and trendy pieces for girls on a budget. Now, you would think that we would embrace a store like this just as much as we embrace stores like Forever21, right? Well, not exactly. Although Rainbows is a budget friendly store it’s name is used derogatorily amongst those of us who consider ourselves pretty fashionable. Whenever something looks cheap, what’s the first thing we say? “That looks like something from Rainbows.” Rainbows offers just about the same trends for the same prices, if not cheaper than H&M and Forever 21, so, why do we dismiss and disparage the longtime wallet friendly store and not embrace it? Could it be because of Rainbow’s earlier reputation of low quality clothing that would deteriorate after two washes?
Whenever I have this discussion with people, I seem to get mixed reviews. Some girls have no problem shopping at Rainbows and will proudly let you know they do. Others, will kindly tell you no, I don’t shop at no Rainbows because the clothes are cheap. So, if we can proudly say we shop at H&M, Target, Kohls, and F21, then why are we so afraid to say that we shop at Rainbows?