Spread the love

LONDON – The average UK adult has 118 items of clothing in their wardrobes of which one quarter (26 per cent) have been unworn for at least a year. This is the finding of the largest ever study undertaken into clothing habits by NGO WRAP. The research estimates UK wardrobes hold 1.6 billion items of unworn clothes, while the adult population spends an estimated £4bn-plus shopping for clothes each month.

This is Premium Content


Only user with Online and Print subscription can access this.


If you are a Free Subscriber, click here to upgrade.



If you already have Online or Print subscription Login To Unlock The Content!

The study also notes a rising trend for buying and selling pre-loved clothes, with more people open to alternatives schemes to ‘buy new’ shopping such as subscriptions, preloved and rental.

Between 2013 and 2021, the predicted length of time people in the UK kept a range of clothing increased. Today, non-padded coats and jackets have the longest lifespans at more than 6 years apiece, while underwear and bras have the briefest at just 2.7 and 2.6 years respectively. Jeans are now kept for an average of 4 years, compared to three years in 2013. Dresses for 4.6 years compared to 3.8, and T-shirts (polo/jersey tops) now hold favour for 4 years, up from 3.3 years. Furthermore, when we buy preloved and second-hand vintage, we tend to keep items longer than those we purchase new. This figure is nearly a year and a half longer at 5.4 years for vintage and preloved clothes, compared to 4 years for off the peg.

The findings show that if we repair an item of clothing, we’ll typically keep it for a further 1.3 years. But while wardrobes are storing more clothing for longer, a considerable number of items are underutilised. Here, claims WRAP, is an opportunity for businesses to provide alternative clothing models like rental subscriptions.

Catherine David, director collaboration and change WRAP, “The clothing and textiles sector has the fourth largest environmental impact on the planet and that’s why WRAP is working with the UK’s biggest retailers and brands to address this through the ambitious targets of Textiles 2030. Many people are already buying and selling pre-loved clothing, but our study shows the huge financial and environmental opportunity that is unworn in all our wardrobes.

Textiles 2030 signatories are already beginning to introduce resale and rental business models, but these alongside repair models must become widespread if the fashion industry is to begin to achieve the reductions in greenhouse gas emissions necessary to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees.”

This is Premium Content


Only user with Online and Print subscription can access this.


If you are a Free Subscriber, click here to upgrade.



If you already have Online or Print subscription Login To Unlock The Content!


Spread the love

Designed and Maintained by Your IT Crew