Recently, ThredUp released their annual Resale Report for 2019. And I just have to share  about the key takeaways I took from reading their report.

For those of you who may not know, ThredUp is an online retailer that exclusively sells pre-owned items. They mainly sell and cosign clothing but also sell jewelry and handbags. They claim to be the internet’s largest online consignment and thrift shop. They’re probably right.

It seems, Jaded Local shares a dream with ThredUp. I want to see a change in the fashion economy because fast fashion is exploitative and unsustainable. (See our past blog post: Why is Fast Fashion So Bad?)

Here are some highlights from the report:

  • Over the past 3 years, the resale sector has grown 21 times faster than retail apparel market
  • More women than ever are buying secondhand clothing
  • While Millennials and boomers shop secondhand the most, Millennials and Gen Z are going to drive the most growth in the market
  • 59% of shoppers expect their brands to create ethically and responsibly
  • There’s a rise in people preferring environmentally friendly brands
  • “Resale powers apparel rotation, not accumulation”.
  • Companies are starting to make plans to create products for sharing rather than keeping
  • ThredUp predicts secondhand will be larger than fast fashion in 10 years
  • ThredUp is seeing increased overall spending in retail settings if they over secondhand products with their pop up stores
  • Retail executives want to advance their companies to circular fashion efforts

Some of the most exciting things from this report is seeing statistics showing a shift in the market itself. Instead of using only ‘recycling’ and ‘pre-owned’ in their language, people and companies now envision a totally new model called circular economy.

Apparel rotation is going to be an interesting shift as well. Instead of buying and accumulating piles of clothes, apparel rotation is the practice of replacing current clothes with newer clothing to keep things fresh. The clothes being replaced can, ideally, be donated or shared. This makes a lot of sense since it satisfy our delight in “new things” while also taking part in a circular, responsible cycle.

People are seeing the problems of fast fashion and expecting more. While I don’t necessarily believe in the popular mantra of voting with your dollar- we know where people’s minds are looking at the trends. Sales are proving a shift in attitudes towards fashion. We cannot afford to look at clothing as short-lived, disposable things.

The resale market is growing and its growing fast. It has to because the current structure does not work.

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