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UK shoppers hoard £4.1bn of unused clothing

Shoppers in the UK own a total of £4.1bn of clothing they do not use, new research has found.

The main reasons given for keeping unwanted garments were “I don’t like to throw things away” (34.7%) and “I can’t be bothered to sort through them” (26.8%).

Almost a third (30.8%) of shoppers have never sold their unused clothing, the Fashion Retail Academy reported.

The data also shows Yorkshire and Humber was ranked the least thrifty place, where just over a third (37.7%) of people saying they buy and sell used clothes. Wales, however, came out on top with nearly half of the population (47.%) confirming they buy and sell old clothing.

Lee Lucas, principle at the Fashion Retail Academy, said: “With households still feeling the squeeze, it is surprising to see that so few Brits aren’t being more thrifty with their unwanted clothes.

“However, our busy lifestyles mean we often don’t have the time and energy to load up our cars with old belongings and cart them off to car boot sales. But there is an endless list of resale apps, websites and Facebook pages with thousands upon thousands of potential buyers waiting to snag a bargain.

“Although our research shows fewer people are buying and selling used clothes, we previously found that more consumers are opting for longer-lasting items. It could be that as consumers pay more for better-quality garments – which are increasingly viewed as investments in their own right – the incentive to sell them on later is diminished.”


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