Thrifting is the latest trend on Indian Instagram, and it is a great one for the environment

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Thrifting is the latest trend on Indian Instagram, and it is a great one for the environment
Thrifting is the latest trend on Indian Instagram, and it is a great one for the environment Canva
  • Many have also started their online store to sell second-hand clothes and household goods online, a popular trend known as thrifting.
  • It is a sustainable business too as an e-store owner can earn a profit margin of about ₹500 on a dress worth ₹850 (including shipping).
  • The fashion industry produces and sells roughly 21 articles per human being on this planet annually (2020).
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What began as a simple website to upload photographs online is currently enabling a cultural, economic and social shift. The thrifting trend is the new thing that Instagram has added to its cart, especially in the Indian subcontinent regions of India, Pakistan, and Nepal.

The boredom and the need to break the monotony gave rise to several new small businesses on Instagram over the last two years. While some sell scrunches online, others use their illustration skills to sell digital art online.

Many have also started their own online store to sell second-hand clothes and household goods online — a trend that is popularly known as thrifting. Aimée ( @aimee.loved), Believe It Thrift It ( @believethrift), At Momo ( @momo.finds), WOO ( @woasonali), The Vintage ( @thev_intage), and Thrift India ( @thrift_India) are just a few Indian thrift stores with over 1.84 lakh followers in total.

The thrift stores have also made the concept of secondhand fashion popular – even desirable – among young shoppers while building a sustainable business model of it. A Rest of World report citing an anonymous source noted that an e-store owner could earn a profit margin of about ₹500 on a dress worth ₹850 (including shipping).

Second hand clothing is one of the fastest growing sectors in the global fashion marketplace, especially as customers seek affordable and eco-friendly options. According to a report by resale platform ThredUp and the analytics firm GlobalData, global used clothing sales would rise to nearly $77 billion by 2025. The industry currently sits at a $36 billion opportunity this year.

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Thrifting is a great initiative for the environment too



The fashion industry produces and sells between 80 billion and 150 billion garments a year globally (2020), roughly up to 21 articles per human being on this planet. About three in five of these clothing products end up in incinerators or landfills within years of production.

If not managed properly, old clothes end up in incinerators or landfills within years of production. Clothes do not biodegrade in a landfill and could remain there for more than 200 years before decomposing. According to the Waste Management Hierarchy — a scale that ranks waste management options by their environmental impact — landfills are the most harmful to our planet.

That said, thrifting and upcycling old clothes will also be great for the environment. Anurag Asati, the co-founder of waste management company The Kabadiwala, previously told Business Insider that old clothes are among the most difficult items to collect and process. They require a lot of effort and resources, making the recycling process much more expensive.

Thrift stores — or these second hand clothing stores — allow the clothes to be reused without additional inputs, thereby reducing their carbon footprint.

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