Research by True Fit Reveals Brits Amass £32k Worth of Unworn Clothing Over a Lifetime

Research by True Fit Reveals Brits Amass £32k Worth of Unworn Clothing Over a Lifetime

PR Newswire

LONDON, December 18, 2018

LONDON, December 18, 2018 /PRNewswire/ --

Forget looking down the back of the sofa for loose change, Brits are hoarding tens of thousands of pounds worth of clothes that they've never worn in their wardrobes, as revealed by the latest data from True Fit, a global data platform for fashion industry that decodes personal style, fit, and size for millions of consumers to help them discover clothes and shoes they'll love and keep.

Research from over 2,000 consumers polled as part of True Fit's Fashion Derailed report showed that over a lifetime Brits will amass £32,951 worth of unworn clothing in their wardrobes - equivalent to the average cost of a wedding[1] or university fees for a three-year undergraduate degree[2].

The average British woman will stash £22,140 worth of unworn clothing in their wardrobes - the equivalent to a house deposit for a first-time buyer[3] - while men accumulate on average £10,811 of garments they will never wear - comparable to the fees for a child under two to attend day nursery full time for a year[4].

With British women forecast to spend £29.4billion on clothing this year alone[5], nearly half of UK female shoppers (45%) admit to having bought something online that they have never worn or have only worn once (44%) because of difficulties choosing items in the right style, fit, and size for their unique personal characteristics and preferences.

And this fashion discovery epidemic, True Fit's data suggests, extends beyond women's wardrobes. With only 1 in 2 (44%) of the UK's garments fitting them properly, the average Brit admits they only wear three quarters (74%) of the clothing in their wardrobes. When it came to finding clothes they love, and choosing the right style, fit, and size, jeans proved the trickiest item to shop for online for both men (15%) and women (21%), followed by trousers (12%), boots (5%), dresses (4%) and heels (4%).

And, such is the frustration with style and sizing guesswork that over three quarters of women (77%) now say they choose not to purchase clothing online because they are unsure of which styles suit them best and which size to buy. Half (50%) even purposely avoid certain retailers because the style, fit, and sizing of their clothes is so unpredictable, causing shoppers to lose confidence in buying from them.  

Lars Rabe, a business leader and fashion expert at True Fit, commented: "There is so much disparity in retailers' sizing - with consumers' clothing fluctuating several dress sizes depending on where they shop, for example - it is leaving many shoppers confused and frustrated when shopping for fashion online.  

"And it's not just bad for consumer confidence, it's also bad for the retailers themselves. Not only might they lose out on sales and erode customer loyalty, but they may also end up bearing the cost of fulfilling redundant items and orders - where shoppers order several items of the same product due to size uncertainty - as well as the cost of returns due to any combination of ordering items aren't right for a shopper's personal taste, body, or size," he added.

Romney Evens, Chief Product and Marketing Officer at True Fit, said: "The fact that half of the female consumers we polled avoid certain retailers due to inconsistencies in style, fit, and sizing is a clear indication of the confidence gap consumers face when shopping for fashion online. If retailers make recommendations for customers based on what they believe their average consumer would prefer, they are making that customer conform to an imaginary and inaccurate concept. This is where sophisticated AI technology can help - true one-to-one personalisation is needed to satisfy and delight consumers. This means making recommendations for that individual customer, not for people similar to them. Consumers are demanding an easier experience, and it's exciting to see leading retailers adopting this capability."

Notes to editors  

Research for True Fit's Fashion Derailed report conducted by One Poll of 2,000 UK adults from 20 - 26 November 2018

  1. Hitched.co.uk wedding survey, 2018 average UK wedding costs £32K
  2. Department for Education, University fees for 2019/2020 academic year £9250
  3. UK House Price Index September 2018 average = £232,554/100 x 5% = £11k, 627 x 10% = £23k
  4. Family and Childcare Trust, 2018. Day nursery, outside London, 50 hours for a child under two @ £232.84 x 47 weeks = £10, 943.48
  5. Mintel, 2108: https://fashionunited.uk/news/retail/british-women-set-to-spend-29-4-billion-pounds-on-clothing-in-2018/2018091438906

About True Fit
True Fit is a data-driven personalization platform for footwear and apparel retailers that decodes personal style, fit, and size for every consumer, every shoe, and every piece of clothing. By connecting manufacturing design data from thousands of leading apparel and footwear brands, anonymized consumer order data from hundreds of top retailers, personal preference data from millions of registered True Fit users, and hundreds of millions anonymous shoppers, True Fit maps the detailed style, fit, size and other technical attributes from clothes and shoes to the style preferences and buying behaviours of millions of individual shoppers.

True Fit has raised $100M from top-tier venture capitalists to organize the world's footwear & apparel data into the Fashion Genome, and to unlock digital growth in the otherwise constrained $2 trillion footwear and apparel industry. The True Personalization Platform is strategically leveraged by 250 global retail sites, representing 17,000 brands and 80M registered users. The Fashion Genome, powered by the True Personalization Platform, allows retailers and brands to provide consumers with unparalleled personalization via software-as-a-service, APIs, and data-as-a-service, including consumer preference data, personal style rankings, fit ratings, size recommendations, fit details, and merchandising analytics. Follow us on LinkedInFacebookYouTube, and @TrueFit on Twitter.

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