ICYMI (don't worry, we did, too), there's a cheaper version of Zara owned by the same parent company. Lefties was originally conceived as an outlet for Zara in 1993, but it's since evolved into its own brand with collections that are exclusive to its stores. You may not have heard of it because it doesn't even appear on Inditex's corporate website, as a 2014 Reuters report noted. Still, it's not exactly a secret — and a new Harper's Bazaar UK explainer has piqued interest in this contemporary label once again. There is, of course, a big caveat: You can't shop Lefties in the U.S. A big differentiator between Lefties and other Inditex-owned brands is that it doesn't have proper e-commerce — there's just an option to reserve items at brick-and-mortar locations, which are currently only in five countries (Spain, Mexico, Portugal, Russia, and Qatar). Inditex still groups Lefties' sales figures with Zara, as El País reported, and the brand is credited with helping grow the company's business in recent years.
Basically, Lefties is in the same bracket as Primark, Forever21, and Boohoo, as Racked reported in 2014: high-street brands that offer goods at a very low cost. Its website looks a lot like sister brand Zara's in terms of how products are presented and how prices are listed. It even releases trend-based editorials, just like Zara. (Recent examples include Modern Countryside and The New Athleisure.) The big differentiator is that while at Zara, one might go straight to TRF for the lower-priced goods, everything at Lefties is already under £80. And, much like its better-known retail sibling, it, too, has been accused of ripping off independent artists, as El Pais noted in the wake of the Shop Art Theft movement. Inditex currently has no plans of bringing Lefties and its even-lower-priced goods to the U.S. or any other countries, according to a Zara rep. Yet, two years ago, Inditex quietly began restructuring and rebranding Lefties in what many considered a move to make it a player in the budget market, according to Reuters. But, hey, if you happen to be traveling to Spain, Mexico, Portugal, Russia, or Qatar and are looking to completely overhaul your suitcase on vacation, you may want to add a pitstop to the retailer to your itinerary. Alternatively, check out our favourite non-fast-fashion brands that are just as good as your neighbourhood Zara.