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52% of 25-34 year-old Brits buy second-hand clothes

Tom Shearsmith
24 January 2020

More than half of young Brits are buying second-hand clothes and selling, fixing and renting their clothes, according to the latest research from Mintel.

Research among over 1,800 people who have bought fashion items in the last year shows that 52% of those surveyed aged between 25-34 bought second-hand clothes. Young Brits are also turning their old clothes into cash, with 50% selling unwanted clothes in the last year, compared to 35% of consumers as a whole.

With so many conflicting messages regarding what is, and what is not sustainable, many shoppers are reported to find it difficult to trust and understand retailers' claims. According to a report this week, 83% of consumers feel misled by green and sustainable buzzwords in retail advertising and labelling, with 76% of consumers thinking they need more education about what is and isn’t sustainable.

The Mintel research also shows that Generation Z (16-24-year-olds) is the demographic most likely to use rental services, with 54% saying they have rented or would be interested in renting fashion items, compared to an average of 33% of Brits. Overall, 57% of Brits agree that buying too many fashion items is bad for the environment.

Chana Baram, Mintel Retail Analyst, said: "Media coverage has helped to raise consumer awareness regarding how harmful certain shopping habits can be to the environment. Consumers want to see fashion retailers doing more to help them shop more ethically and sustainably. It has become more necessary than ever for the fashion industry to work together and push for industry-wide best-practice guidelines when it comes to producing fashion in a way that will have the lowest environmental impact." has previously published an exclusive in-depth study into how the British consumer is adapting their behaviour in light of sustainability concerns, where it was revealed secondhand clothing is losing its stigma with overall 34% saying they would be happy to shop in second hand stores and a similar number saying they would use fashion resale sites.

The Industry Sustainability Insight's consumer study reports are available to view by paid members only. For more information on joining, click here.

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