A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Wanelo Shopping is a social shopping app (and website) that connects users to styles, brands, and products, as well as to other people on Wanelo with similar preferences. Teens and adults can post their favorite things -- clothes, home goods, cosmetics, and more -- and browse by brands, items, and lists created by other users. "Wanelo" stands for "Want, Need, Love," and one of its mottos is "All stores in one app," which isn't much of a stretch, given the fact that it includes hundreds of thousands of stores and millions of items posted by users to browse and buy. The app also calls itself "dangerous fun," which is also true, unless your teen can browse, share, and make lists of things without always wanting to buy them. Type "jeans," and hundreds of images of jeans of all colors and styles from different designers appear. Tap "Buy," and you're instantly moved to the online store of the brand or supplier.
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What's it about?
Join WANELO SHOPPING by entering an email or Facebook account. View store choices and tap "Follow" to follow stores, people, and products you like to help customize your shopping experience. The app includes brief tutorial-like boxes that show you how to view, save, comment on, share, categorize, and buy the items displayed during your first browsing session. Continue to scroll through images, search for specific items, view alerts, comment on others' posts, or view your "collection" on your main page. There are hundreds of thousands of images to view and things to save, dream about, or buy.
Is it any good?
Wanelo Shopping is a beautifully organized, intuitive shopping app, especially for teens who are naturally attuned to using social media as a way to get recommendations for lifestyle and purchasing choices. Still, teens must wisely manage their browsing with their buying on this addictive app. The social media/shopping hybrid is like a giant catalog users can tailor to their exact style preferences and shopping needs by searching for people, brands, and items that match what they like. One item leads to another, which leads to a list of others and more, until an hour and 1,000 items have passed by your eyes.
More serious fashion followers can view what's trending that day, filter by price range, and communicate ideas and impressions with other users via comments (which can be reported, if they're harassing). Wanelo Shopping can be fun, daily digital widow-shopping and style development for teens, with the caveat that it could be dangerous if too much buying overtakes the browsing.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how shopping smart -- making a budget, balancing needs and wants, waiting a day or two to buy to avoid impulse purchases -- can make Wanelo more fun and less dangerous for teens' and parents' wallets.
Remind your teen that safe social-networking principles apply on this social shopping site, too. Check out Common Sense's Internet Safety Library for tips.
Wanelo can be a great opportunity to open a conversation between parents and teens about fashion. Browse the app with your teens and discuss their (and your) likes and dislikes, price points, and ideas for building a wardrobe that reflects personal style.
For kids who love learning about money management
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