In need of a wardrobe refresh? You may just want to raid the closets of your favorite celebrities.
Secondhand peer-to-peer shopping platform Depop has turned into a treasure trove for used celebrity fashion. It’s a win-win: you get to purchase from your favorite stars, and by purchasing used clothes, you’re also making the sustainable fashion choice for the planet.
Depop’s platform boasts items from A-list celebrities including 2021 Grammy winner, Megan Thee Stallion. The platform also has items listed from dozens of celebrities including Grammy-nominated singer Doja Cat, and actresses Emily Ratajkowski and Maisie Williams.
Like Paris-based Vestiaire Collective, Depop has perfected peer-to-peer crowdsourced shopping. Users upload images of their offerings and ship items to their customers once sold.
For celebrities, this is a novel way to connect with fans, especially during lockdown when their typical modes of connecting — concerts and public performances — aren’t happening. Celebrities are also using the platform as a way to connect their followers to causes they care about. Megan Thee Stallion’s recent Texas-inspired collection raised funds for the charity Let’s F Cancer, for example. Proceeds from Doja Cat’s items went to charities working to end sex trafficking.
Prices were reasonable, too; some items sold for as little as $10.
The Environmental Benefit of Peer-to-Peer Shopping
The benefits of embracing secondhand shopping are significant; it keeps old clothes out of landfills and slows the production of new garments. Making new clothes puts significant pressure on natural resources and is a leading contributor of emissions.
Fashion is one of the biggest polluters on the planet. Twenty percent of water pollution comes from the treatment and dyeing of textiles. Growing fabrics, like cotton, are also problematic; cotton uses more pesticides than any other cultivated crop. Even the oft-hyped bamboo can be an emitter, depending on how it’s processed. The fashion industry uses nearly 25 percent of all of the chemicals produced worldwide, according to recent data.
Most of the fashion currently produced has an average life-span of fewer than three years. This is fast-fashion. Its planned obsolescence keeps us in a cycle of buying and trashing with every season. But because the quality of fast-fashion is so poor, these items are often unsalable, so they wind up in landfills, where they contribute to ocean pollution and toxic landfill chemicals called leachate.
There are also serious human rights issues within the fashion industry. While a growing number of brands have made commitments to uphold acceptable working conditions, the demand for fast and cheap fashion makes that more difficult to manage.
Secondhand shopping also helps make high-quality fashion more accessible to those without A-list budgets, reducing the need for supplementing with the cheaper items that won’t last.