2019 Fashion Resale Market and Trend Report

Primary Sources

1. GlobalData Market Sizing: GlobalData’s assessment of the secondhand market is determined through ongoing retailer tracking, official public data, data sharing, store observation, consumers surveys, and secondary sources. These inputs are used by analysts to model and calculate market sizes, channel sizes, and market shares.

2. GlobalData Survey: The consumer data in this report is derived from a consumer survey of 2,000 women. The survey asked them a number of questions about their attitudes towards apparel, secondhand products, and resale products. The sample was designed to be representative of age and income and was also geographically representative. Surveying was undertaken by GlobalData between December 11, 2018 and January 6, 2019.


Secondary Sources

3. Green Story Environmental Study: Independent research firm, Green Story Inc. was contracted to calculate the environmental savings from reuse of secondhand garments sold by thredUP. The study compared the environmental burden of purchasing a brand-new garment with that of reusing an average garment sold by thredUP across all stages of the garment’s lifecycle. The savings were calculated across three areas: greenhouse gas emissions, energy use and water consumption. The study followed international ISO 14040 LCA standard.

4. Ellen MacArthur Foundation: Data from 2015 report, “A New Textiles Economy: Redesigning Fashion’s Future.”

5. Senior Retail Executive Survey: 20 of the top retailers were surveyed in January 2019 about their 2020 Circular Fashion goals.

6. Resale Value Rankings: thredUP evaluated 35,000+ unique brands on its platform and created an aggregate score to determine a brand’s ranking based on demand, virality and value to the seller.

7. Internal thredUP Customer Behavior / Data.

8. EDITED retail analytics.


Retail Sector Definitions

Secondhand: Consumption of all used apparel. Includes both the Resale sector and the Thrift & Donation sector.

Department Stores: A type of general retail store, wherein the retailer displays products within distinct departments, often located on separate floors, specializing in defined product areas. Examples include Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s, Sears, JCPenney, Nordstrom, etc.

Off-Price: A retailer that sells items at lower prices than those typically charged by retail businesses. Off-price stores typically purchase overstocked goods or make special purchases. Examples include TJ Maxx, Marshalls, Ross, Burlington, etc.

Value Chains: Value stores are a retail format that sells inexpensive items, at a single or limited number of price points, like dollar stores. Also includes Walmart.

Mid-Priced Specialty: Specialist clothing retailers operating in the middle of the market in terms of price, i.e. not value but not premium or luxury. Tend to be found in malls or traditional main street locations. Examples include Gap, Ann Taylor

Fast Fashion: Specialist clothing retailers with a fast stock turnaround and whose model relies on selling high volumes at (usually) inexpensive price points. Examples include Zara, H&M, etc.

Direct to Consumer: Online only specialists and generalists selling clothing direct to the public, excludes C2C or auction type sites, also excludes the online part of traditional retail businesses. Examples include Everlane, Outdoor Voices, etc.

Amazon: Amazon’s clothing sales in the US, stated at gross merchandise value.

Subscription: Subscription based services for clothing, such as StitchFix and Trunk Club. Excludes non-clothing elements of subscriptions where relevant; and rental.

Other: Sales of clothing from all other sources, including: grocers and supermarkets, drug stores, duty free, warehouse clubs, variety stores, other non-clothing specialists, convenience stores, etc.


Reports & Articles Referenced

Ellen MacArthur Foundation: Data from 2015 report, “A New Textiles Economy: Redesigning Fashion’s Future”

Raymond James, “The Rise of the Fashion Resale Marketplaces” 2018 Report

McKinsey x Business of Fashion “State of Fashion 2019” Report

Fast Company Article: “A Complete Guide to Buying Ethical Clothes on a Budget”

Source Article