Marks & Spencer

The secret reason why Marks & Spencer is the best clothes shop on the high street right now

Are we…old?


There was a time when Marks & Spencer was synonymous with your grandma. Aside from comfy bras, good tights, soft PJs, Per Una and the Rosie Huntington-Whiteley collection, there was little to write home about. You weren’t nipping in there on your trip to the shopping centre on a Saturday, aside from for a meal deal and a pack of trainer socks— then everything changed.

When me and my friends first started clocking how amazing Marks & Spencer’s clothes are, we were disturbed. “Does this mean we’re old now” we asked one another “But their clothes are just better quality and their knitwear is so reasonable” we reasoned. For a while, the M&S addiction was a semi-secret pleasure – until TikTok got on board, too.

@officiallylyd

The most incredible trousers 🤍 #marksandspencer #mandshaul #creamtrousers #fashiontok #style

♬ original sound – officiallylyd

Browse TikTok now and there are endless videos of seriously chic users getting their entire spring/summer hauls from the heritage store. “Honestly, at this point, I’m their biggest fan,” wrote one user in a pair of chic boyfriend fit jeans and a boxy white T-shirt. “POV: You slept on M&S and they upped their game,” added another as they browsed the handbags.

Every week, another M&S item goes viral: their linen trousers – impossible to get, their little waistcoats – featured in every fashion magazine in the UK, their hot pink kitten heels – in every other TikTok video. To put it simply, M&S is the best clothes shop on the high street. So, how exactly is this happening?

@bethanytrohear

New M&S spring try on! 🌷🌿🌸🌞 @Marks & Spencer #springoutfit #marksandspencer #haul #springhaul #tryonhaul #outfitideas #colourfulfashion #outfitinspo

♬ TEXAS HOLD ‘EM – Beyoncé

Well, it’s largely down to the legacy of the glory days of Topshop. Yup, you read that right— the outfitter which gifted us our best fits all through the 2010s is coming through once more in 2024. How, you ask? Their buying team. Maddy Sillem, who is now Womenswear Director and former Womenswear Head of Buying at Marks and Spencer, spent 10 years at Topshop as Head of Buying, Buying Director, and Fashion Director. So, is it really any wonder M&S is popping off right now with the best style pieces this end of the millennium? Of course it’s not.

M&S is absolutely thriving with everyone from Gen-Z to grandmas. In November they revealed they’d made pre-tax profits of £360.2million— up from £205.5 million the year before. Fundamentally, it’s a shop giving us what few others actually will: Endlessly chic, on trend, clean cut, affordable and well-made outfits. As one person on TikTok put it: “M&S is slaying right now.”

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