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Secondhand fashion set to take on retail

Secondhand fashion set to take on retail

The top 4 fastest growing sectors in fashion are secondhand, direct, rental and subscription

thredUP, the biggest reseller of high-end fashion brands in the world says we are headed for a secondhand fashion revolution that is already redefining the way we see fashion. thredUP's latest report on the fashion gives a number of key insights into how COVID accelerated an already changing - and more sustainable and responsible, market. 

Spending more time at home saw us cleaning, clearing and renovating our homes and selves to pass the time. Consumers everywhere are prioritizing value in both money terms and material, literally. This is partly of the fear or reality of having less funds, but also because of some very strong value shifts. 

We shifted in droves to brands whose core proposition delivers value and convenience. This saw a big shift to direct, resale and secondhand. Resale is expected to grow by 5 times over the next 5 years, while retail is projected to shrink.

Buying secondhand is up there with adopting a puppy

On the guilt and pride meter, choosing to buy secondhand rates up there with adopting a puppy. Nearly 3/4 of us agree that addressing climate change is more important than ever and nearly half of us are shifting more spend to sustainable brands. 

Gen Z are leading out fashion choices

The youth of the world are more switched on than ever about the health of the planet. With their words, deeds, and dollars, the younger generation is demonstrating a genuine desire to be part of the long-term solution to fashion waste. This should inspire much optimism in all of us. The consciousness of the next generation of consumers is a tailwind for businesses that deliver customer value in a sustainable way. 

Slowing fast fashion

On the current trends, thredUP projecst that the secondhand resale market will be bigger than fast fashion by 2029. Given that fast fashion feeds part of it, this is somewhat heartening.

Not the end of Op Shops

With the gentrification of secondhand, some bloggers are crying foul for poor people, but this report clearly shows there is plenty for everyone. There is really no evidence that Op Shops have less fashion than they can sell; or that the prices of the same fashion is on the rise.

Online retail is growing and offline changing to get in on the game

Retailers, led by the likes of Patagonia, are creating more and more re-sale areas in their firsthand clothing stores, both online and offline. They do this by providing specific areas, clean out kits that can be turned into store credit. While more are doing it to create foot traffic, a large percentage are also environmentally focused. 

9 Things You Can Do to Reduce Your Fashion Footprint

  1. Buy mostly secondhand clothes
  2. Air dry clothes
  3. Shop mostly sustainable brands
  4. Wear dresses at least 12 times
  5. Wash clothes on cold
  6. Choose standard shipping
  7. Repair one garment a season
  8. Skip dry cleaning
  9. Rent for special occasions

Who is thredUP?

In 2009, USA company, thredUP, set out to make used clothes the new normal and create a more sustainable future for fashion. The company designed a modern resale experience that took the work and risk out of thrift, and converted a generation of secondhand skeptics to fans.

Sellers send clothes directly to thredUP by the bagful, and buyers shop quality-checked items from over 35,000 brands at steep discounts. To power this marketplace, thredUP built an infrastructure that has processed 100 million one-of-a-kind garments via proprietary technology, data and logistics.

thredUP most recently expanded its platform with Resale-as-a-Service (RaaS) to power resale for the world’s leading fashion brands. As a circular fashion pioneer, thredUP is reducing fashion’s impact on the planet and unlocking economic value for consumers and brands alike.

Images: thredUP / Charts: Global Data, via thredUP

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