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The impact of “Do It Yourself Fashion” 

The second hand market explodes in the era of Covid-19. Are Fashion brands ready to welcome new targets and let themselves be inspired by them?

In the Annual Resale Report published at the end of 2019, GlobalData analysts forecast the exponential growth of the luxury and second hand clothing market, estimating an overall market value in 2021 of 37 billion Dollars in the USA only, with one in four luxury buyers also involved in the purchase of pre-loved products. Consumers in the 18-37 age range are the drivers of growth, with an adoption rate of second hand products 2.5 times higher than all the other targets.

The Pandemic has created a very particular micro-system that has accelerated the change in consumer attitudes towards second hand products, which are traded mainly through online channels.

Data collected by our platform confirm the trend and help us understand how this market is likely to evolve in the near future.

Authentications of second hand products purchased on marketplaces increase.

Data collected by Certilogo’s authentication platform indicate that the second hand market is growing faster than expected:

  • Authentications of products purchased on marketplaces – a category that groups second hand, resale, consignment, donations and thrift sites - in the period Jan-Apr 2020 grew by 41% compared to the same period of the previous year (Jan-Apr 2019), bringing the share of products purchased on marketplaces from 28% to 33%.
The impact of “Do It Yourself Fashion” ​​​​​​​

Source: Certilogo data, Jan-Apr 2020 vs Jan-Apr 2019

  • The offer of products from previous seasons has also increased. In the period Jan-Apr 2019, 58% of authentications referred to products that had been launched at least two years before, while in the period Jan-Apr 2020 the percentage of authenticated products dating back to previous collections has increased to 69%.
The impact of “Do It Yourself Fashion” ​​​​​​​

Source: Certilogo data, Jan-Apr 2020 vs Jan-Apr 2019

The impact of “Do It Yourself Fashion”.

We believe that the driving forces of the increase in demand and supply on marketplaces are both economic in nature and dependent upon the evolution of consumers’ purchase behavior.

The lockdown and the economic crisis have obviously prompted many consumers to rethink their wardrobe, finding ways to partially recover the value of clothing and accessories that are no longer of interest, with a view to freeing up resources to finance new purchases. The increase in offer of supply on marketplaces is at the same time leading to a decrease in the average price per item, offering consumers the opportunities for making unprecedented bargains.

One of the most interesting phenomena encouraging the sale of second hand products is the spread of “DIY Fashion”.

Young people are increasingly attracted by the idea of personalizing and reassembling their clothes, which causes a peak in the recycling and resale of fashion and luxury items; this is also facilitated by new technologies and processes made available to consumers by mainstream players on a global scale.

What happens next?

The Pandemic might have accelerated the birth of a new Instagram Generation that considers recycling and resale of used items as a valid, even “cool” solution for the renewal of their wardrobe, rather than a second rate alternative. It seems to be a coherent response both to the need to stand out from the crowd by continually creating and wearing new outfits, and to the need to embrace more ethical, conscious and sustainable choices and behaviors.

Is this bad news for designers? Not if they draw inspiration from the creative energies and values of this new generation. Brands have the chance to build new relationships with their customers, generating more value in the  long-term. They can decide to own this new "cool" second hand culture, creating collections that are “recyclable by design”, or find ways to manage the sale and recycling of second hand clothing directly, thus reducing the intermediation of marketplaces.

We see clear signs that some of the most popular brands are already well aware of the new trends and working actively to own them.
9 out of 10 American fashion retail executives interviewed by GlobalData say that they plan to kickstart their own resale initiatives in 2020.

20% of the marketing directors interviewed by Certilogo in the USA and Europe in the "Consumer Engagement 4.0" survey conducted in 2019 say they are very interested in collecting profiled leads of consumers who have purchased second hand products.

Our recommendations

  1. Use Certilogo’s traceability and product authentication data to its full extent by following your products beyond the first sale, through all the entire lifecycle.
  2. Engage customers who buy your pre-loved products too, and open up to a dialogue with them.
  3. Consider that becoming a player in the circular economy means overseeing not only sourcing and sales, but also reselling, re-using and recycling. If you don’t do it, it's very likely that someone else will.

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Read also - Certilogo fashion observatory:




28 May 2020

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