It is a phenomenon that affects all categories of the population and particularly young people. For the past four or five years, second-hand clothes have been seducing teenagers, who find in these second-hand clothes a source of inspiration to refine their style.
Secondhand clothes “Allow a real singularity because everyone can appropriate them and mix them in their own way, Serge Carreira analysis, professor at Sciences-Po and fashion specialist. These are often quite rare pieces, almost unique, and everyone will have the feeling of expressing something very personal. “
This enthusiasm is fueled by the rise of digital sales platforms between individuals, such as Vinted, the market leader, but also by the proliferation of thrift stores and vintage shops (Guerrisol, Mamie Blue, Free’p’Star, etc.) which have become essential for this generation.
According to the French Fashion Institute, in 2019, 40% of French people bought at least one second-hand item, up from 15% ten years ago. Beyond originality, which they like to post on social networks, young people appreciate low prices and “good deals”. “You can find rare pearls, very expensive pieces at an affordable price, testifies Kelly, in her twenties. What I like about second-hand clothes is being able to give clothes a second life. It is a more responsible way of consuming. “
→ READ. Fashion, the ecological disasters of “fast fashion”
The choice to wear second-hand clothes can thus be part of an approach to preserving the environment. We now know that the fast fashion (a rapidly changing mode) emits more greenhouse gases than international flights and maritime traffic combined (1). “Young people are sensitive to the ecological argument, confirms Serge Carreira. They consider that buying a garment already worn is a way of not damaging the planet. “
In our opinion
While wearing second-hand clothes can be a committed act, not all young people identify with the “climate generation”, as shown by a study published in The cross. In addition, this approach only makes sense if you do not buy clothes by the kilo, as is sometimes done. Still, second-hand fashion allows young people and teenagers to be in a dynamic of imitation, important at this age, and of distinction to assert their personality.