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Supreme, maximalism and sustainability dominated resale trends in 2010s

Published
Jan 10, 2020
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As the new decade dawns, The RealReal has released a retrospective report tracking the trends and brands that had the biggest impact on the second-hand fashion market over the course of the 2010s, identifying maximalism, logomania and sustainability as some of the most influential industry developments of the last ten years.
 

Supreme had the highest average resale value of any brand on The RealReal in the 2010s - Instagram: @supremenewyork


The report also highlighted the brands that had achieved the strongest resale value in the 2010s, a ranking led by cult streetwear label Supreme, closely followed by French bagmaker Goyard and Paris-based jeweler Van Cleef & Arpels. Hermès and Louis Vuitton completed the top five.

Decade-defining designers making the case for maximalism

The brands seeing the greatest gains in resale value over the decade, on the other hand, were Gucci, Fendi and Dior. Growth at Dior was boosted by the arrival of Kim Jones as creative director of the brand’s menswear in 2018, which sent Dior Men’s resale value up 5.2x.

Other creative directors driving the value of their brands on the second-hand market include Ricardo Tisci, whose arrival at Burberry saw the label’s resale value rise 2.9x, and Virgil Abloh, who led a 2.6x increase at Louis Vuitton when he took over the brand’s menswear.
 
“Decade-defining designers had a major impact on the rise of distinctly different fashion tribes in the 2010s,” commented Sasha Skoda, head of women’s at The RealReal, in the report. “From Phoebe Philo spurring minimalist-loving ‘Philo-Philes’ to Alessandro Michele charting an over-the-top course for maximalism.”
 
Ultimately, it seems that maximalism won out, with styles reflecting this trend selling 3x more on The RealReal than any other over the last decade.
 
Skoda also highlighted the rise of social media as a gamechanger in the 2010s, with influencers – not designers – driving the 90s comeback that has gained ground in the latter part of the decade and establishing a new trend cycle defined by personal style.
 

The rise of sustainability


 
The 2010s also saw the ascension of conscious fashion, with the resale value of sustainable brands increasing 1.5x during the ten-year period, while searches for sustainable brands rose 3.6x on The RealReal.
 
The trend shows no signs of slowing down either, with 46% of shoppers surveyed by the resale platform saying that they intend to shop more sustainable brands and retailers in the coming decade.
 
In terms of specific brands, Stella McCartney was the best-selling sustainable label on The RealReal in the 2010s, while, in 2019, Nanushka saw the biggest spike in demand of any brand of this kind, witnessing a peak of 1090%.
 
Elsewhere, Bode had the highest average resale value of any sustainable apparel brand, at 63%, while Wwake claimed the same title among sustainable jewelry labels, with an average resale value of 65%.
 

Logomania, vintage fashion and gender fluidity


 
As logomania raged on, items featuring logos had a resale value 1.9% higher than non-logo items, while the popularity of streetwear collaborations helped push the average resale value of streetwear up 1.6% since 2010.
 
As the decade drew to a close, flashback fashion confirmed itself as a new force to be reckoned with, as searches for vintage pieces rose 830% in the last two years alone.
 
The recent boom in the gender-fluid trend has also had its effect on resale, with The RealReal seeing a 3.5x increase in women buying men’s sneakers and a 1.6x increase in men buying women’s handbags.
 
As pointed out by the report, resale itself was one of the fastest growing trends within the wider fashion industry during the 2010s, and it’s a movement that was driven principally by millennials as they came to represent an increasingly important consumer demographic.
 
In the space of the last ten years, millennials spent 47% more on women’s bags on the resale market, 64% more on men’s bags, 66% more on sneakers, 146% more on watches and a massive 184% more on jewelry.
 
And if The RealReal’s survey data is anything to go by, the resale trend will only keep growing in the future. 60% of shoppers interviewed by the platform said that they intend to buy more resale in the coming decade, while 55% made a commitment to buying less fast fashion.

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