thredUP Releases 8th Annual Resale Report

thredUP News
4 min readJun 23, 2020

Today thredUP, the world’s largest fashion resale marketplace, released the 2020 Resale Report. This state-of-the-industry study is conducted annually in partnership with GlobalData, the third-party research and analytics firm, to examine the trends and trajectory of the $28B resale apparel market. This year, GlobalData also conducted COVID-19 market research and consumer surveying to uncover how an unprecedented global pandemic will impact the resale industry.

This year’s Resale Report, unlike any we’ve published, captures insights from two different worlds: pre- and post-COVID. The data reveals a reprioritization of consumers’ values, transforming how and from whom they shop. We hope this report sparks rich dialogue about the enduring consumer shifts underway and the forces fueling the future of resale.” — Anthony S. Marino, thredUP President.

Below summarizes the key findings but is not representative of the report in full.

Read the full Resale Report here →

Excerpts from the Report:

1. Resale is big and has been growing really fast.

  • The total secondhand market is $28B, projected to reach $64B in 5 years.
  • Resale grew 25 times faster than retail in 2019.
  • 70% of consumers are now open to buying secondhand, and 64M bought secondhand products last year.

View all data →

2. Resale avoids the ‘COVID retail slump’ as shoppers bargain-hunt from home.

  • While retail is shrinking, online secondhand is expected to grow 27% in 2020 (through COVID) and 69% from 2019–2021.
  • Quarantine cleaning: 50% of people are cleaning out their closets more than pre-COVID.
  • Affordable fun: thredUP saw increased activity during lock-down, with record site visitors in May. Those visitors spent 37% more ‘time on site’ treasure hunting than pre-COVID.

View all data →

3. Consumers prioritize value in economic uncertainty, driving a shift to thrift.

  • 4 out of 5 people say they would buy used clothing if money gets tight. 79% of consumers plan to cut their apparel budgets in the next 12 months.
  • As consumers look to cut costs, secondhand, Amazon fashion and off-price are the only apparel sectors expected to gain customers in 2020.

View all data →

4. Secondhand is taking over closets & major retailers want in.

  • Resale is projected to grow 5X over the next 5 years, where retail is expected to shrink.
  • In 10 years, closets will have more used & off-price clothing than any other category.
  • Resale will be bigger than fast fashion within 10 years as FF’s growth stagnates.
  • thredUP launched partnerships with Walmart, GAP, Rebook, Abercrombie and more in 2020 — as retailers look to resale to reach younger, conscious consumers.

View all data →

5. Gen Z, with a love of bargains and sustainability, are driving resale’s growth.

  • 9 out of 10 Gen Zs are open to buying used clothing
  • The shift to sustainability is accelerating: In one year, the number of consumers who plan to spend more on sustainable brands has doubled.
  • Nearly ½ of consumers say they plan to buy more sustainable fashion in the next 5 years.
  • In a COVID survey, 70% of consumers agree that addressing climate change is more important than ever.

View all data →

6. ‘Single-use fashion’ is more prevalent than ever. Resale can offset the waste.

  • 1 in 2 shoppers don’t want to be seen in the same outfit twice.
  • 1 in 2 consumers still throw unwanted clothes in the trash.
  • Consumers wore over 100m single-use outfits in 2019, generating 208m pounds of waste. 40% of those single-use outfits were worn to weddings. If everyone wore a thrifted outfit to a wedding next year it would be the carbon equivalent of taking 56M cars off the road for a day.
  • thredUP has recirculated 100M garments displacing 1.7M pounds of CO2 emissions. That’s the carbon equivalent of cutting 90,000 flights around the world.

View all data →

7. thredUP’s official 2020 list of brands with the best resale value

About thredUP

thredUP is the world’s largest fashion resale platform, inspiring a new generation to think secondhand first. The company has spent the past 10 years reinventing resale, building a marketplace and infrastructure now poised to power the $50B resale economy and usher in a more sustainable fashion future. Millions of consumers use thredUP as the easiest way to sell their clothes and shop over 45,000 brands at up to 90% off — online, in stores or via “try-before-you-buy” Goody Boxes. Backed by world-class investors, thredUP designed a resale engine that has redistributed over 100 million unique garments from closets across America and is now powering resale for the broader fashion industry via its Resale-As-A-Service (RAAS) platform.



thredUP News

Happenings from the world’s largest online thrift store