The Benefits Of Secondhand Shopping
For week two of our #KeepBuyingLess campaign, we’re looking at the many reasons we should all start shopping secondhand.
It can often feel like fast fashion is only ever going to get faster but secondhand fashion is putting this to the test! According to ThredUP’s annual resale report, the secondhand industry has grown 21 times faster than apparel retail in the last three years. The resale market is currently expected to overtake the apparel market, meaning it's diverting revenue from the fast fashion industry.
But why is this good news? Why, more than ever, should we be incorporating more hand-me-downs and vintage garms into our wardrobes?
Shopping secondhand is ultimately the most sustainable way to shop because you’re giving a new lease of life to a pre-loved garment. This prevents unloved clothing from going to waste and joining the 11 million items of clothing that end up in a UK landfill every week.
The mass production of clothes also places a huge strain on the earth’s resources. Opting for secondhand greatly eases this pressure on our planet by prioritising textiles already in circulation. It is estimated that extending the average lifespan of our clothes by just three months would lead to a 5 to 10 percent reduction in each item’s carbon, water and waste footprints.
Another huge selling point is its affordability: secondhand clothes usually come with heavily discounted price tags. One of the biggest obstacles to sustainable fashion is its price point but secondhand shopping is budget friendly for students, working families and the frugal at heart. So, it’s the perfect way to kickstart your sustainability journey.
With the likes of Depop or Vinted, you can still get your hands on trendy, branded pieces for just a fraction of the price – you could always sell your old clothes for some extra cash too! The best part is that these purchases won’t directly fund the fast fashion industry or its exploitative practices. Plus, charity shopping allows you to direct your money where you want it and support a good cause of your choice.
Shopping secondhand is admittedly somewhat of a treasure hunt. You can leave loads of stores empty-handed then strike gold with a designer piece. It’s moments like these that make the entire trip worth it. It’s a moment of sheer joy that you simply cannot replicate on the high street.
When you frequent your local vintage stores, you also get a creative eye for finding pieces you can transform. Shopping secondhand encourages you to learn new textile skills so you can maintain and upcycle your wardrobe.