Why Resale and Rental Services are More Popular than Ever in the Fashion Industry

New York Fashion Week 2020

With the more recent explosion of social media and e-commerce, resale and now rental services are not only taking off but have changed the game of traditional thrifting entirely. It is no secret that e-commerce has totally dominated the fashion industry. With that, companies have found ways to adapt and stay relevant in such a fast-paced and ultra-competitive industry. As a result, fast fashion has become an increasing concern and ultimately damaging to the reputation of the fashion industry. Consumers are becoming more aware of the detrimental effects fast fashion has on the environment, which in turn has affected the way people shop. A large part of consumers, specifically Millennials, are handing over their loyalty to brands that align with their same beliefs. Those beliefs include the desire for sustainable fashion in an effort to combat the negative impacts of fast fashion on the environment. This idea of sustainability regarding consumer behavior, is definitely one of the main contributors as to why resale and rental services have suddenly become so popular.

Buffalo Exchange in Center City, Philadelphia

Brands such as Buffalo exchange, have completely adopted this idea of buying and reselling clothing. Their philosophy is based on the option to buy, sell, or trade your clothing and other accessories right on the spot. Through the use of social media, they are able to reach a larger audience and attract likeminded customers to their stores. Whereas Buffalo exchange is run in the traditional sense with brick and mortar stores, companies such as Poshmark differ. Poshmark is a social commerce marketplace where people have the ability to buy, sell, or trade their clothing entirely from their mobile devices. This platform has changed the way people think of thrifting and has certainly made it trendy to do so. Poshmark has also paved the way for companies such as The RealReal, an online (and now with brick and mortar locations) luxury resale company, to enter the ever-growing resale fashion market.

The RealReal Website
The RealReal Store in NYC
Poshmark markets allow for easy shopping

This rise of the resale market has helped rental services break through the industry as well. The most well-known brand currently dominating this market is Rent the Runway. Not only do they appeal to people from a sustainable approach, but it gives them the option to switch out their wardrobe as they please. Especially with social media having such a large influence in the fashion industry, people tend to not want to wear the same outfits twice. Rental services provide the luxury of always being up to date with the latest trends, while not having to necessarily commit to them. It is also a great way to discover new brands that you wouldn’t normally seek out or know of. The Rent the Runway business model has proven to be so successful, that traditional retailers have begun to implement their own rental services. Philly’s own, the URBN company has just recently introduced their own rental service brand, Nuuly. That being said, we can be sure to expect many more companies to do the same.

Rent the Runway: Buy Less. Wear More.

So, why should you shop resale and rental services? Well, you might discover new brands or find pieces that you wouldn’t normally buy but will absolutely fall in love with. It is a great way to revamp and refresh your wardrobe, especially with spring just around the corner. And the best part is you can even make some extra money while getting rid of clothing and accessories you no longer wear!