Despite the fast-fashion giant’s strong recent results, this store has a bit of an identity crisis.
Despite all the razzmatazz that surrounds H&M’s various collaborations, it still needs to do the basics and put out a range that inspires at a price. As with Burton, the big categories are all ticked off but lack a point of difference. It’s more successful when it keeps things simple: T-shirts in bright colours will pep up wardrobes while a navy db jacket and multicolour-striped jumper nod to trends but these are too few and far between.
This is where H&M should dominate and it compares favourably to its rivals. With polos costing £9.99, chinos at £19.99 with a better button than Topman, well-cut denim from £19.99, the navy db jacket at £34.99 and the jumper at £24.99, it’s highly competitive if you search out the good stuff but there’s no hiding from the shiny and depressingly cheap-looking £29.99 blazer and £14.99 trouser combo. The winning style is a basic tee made with 50% organic cotton at just £4.99.
Where to start? The experience of shopping the menswear floor is an incoherent one as poor signage, muddled VM and virtually non-existent staff create an environment that is anything but one in which a customer will want to spend money (or so you’d think). There’s a jumble sale feel as styles crop up in random places, the staff unable to keep them in check. For all the shouting about recent GQ coverage in the window and inside, these negatives are too much of a turn off.