Love Island's Gemma Owen criticised for Pretty Little Thing signing after pre-loved clothes push

Gemma Owen, 19, is the latest UK brand ambassador for Pretty Little Thing. Credit: Pretty Little Thing

Love Island's Gemma Owen has sparked outrage online for signing with fast-fashion brand Pretty Little Thing - despite the reality show's push on eco-friendly clothes.

Describing it as "dream come true", the 19-year-old signed the deal two weeks after Ekin-Su Culculoglu and Davide Sanclimenti were crowned the winners of the ITV reality show.

Gemma, the daughter of footballer Michael Owen, follows in the footsteps of Love Island star Molly Mae, who is the creative director of the company based in Manchester.

In a Tweet on Monday, Pretty Little Things said: "It's official! Welcome to the PLT family @gemowen_1. We can’t wait to show everyone what we’re working on..."

But her involvement with the brand has been seen as controversial, after Love Island's conscious push on sustainable fashion for this year's series.

Producers of the hit reality show ditched fast-fashion brands and teamed up with online eBay UK for season eight, in a bid to become more eco-friendly.

Frankie Leach, from Twitter, said: "After Love Island spent all that time dressing her in second-hand ethical outfits, Gemma Owen took the fame from that same show to start shilling for one of the worst fast-fashion brands in the world. Nice!"

Another Tweeter, @meenajutlas, said: "Gemma Owen signing with PLT, a fast fashion brand, despite none of her looks causing a conversation, meanwhile fashion queen Tasha signs with eBay to derail fast fashion? Yeah there's a reason I prefer her."

Meanwhile, another person said: "Tasha chose eBay though. It's specifically pre-loved, while PLT is fast fashion and completely unsustainable on the environment.

"I doubt she would've gone with them even if she had the choice."

Pretty Little Thing are currently under investigation for "green washing", when a company spends more time and money on marketing itself as eco-friendly than on minimising its environmental impact.

Gemma Owen says it is a "dream come true" to become a brand ambassador for PLT. Credit: Pretty Little Things

The brand, who have come under fire in recent years over concerns about working conditions, pay and sustainability, say they "endeavor to make positive change."

It said: "Looking after the planet is more important than ever, and like many others, we want to help create a more sustainable future.

"We endeavor to make a positive change with the platform and resources we have and will continue to work towards ways in which we can do better and be better."

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