Nearly half of British shoppers ‘can’t afford to be more sustainable’

44 per cent of UK consumers would ditch fast fashion and switch to sustainable clothing if they could, but can’t afford the difference in cost, new research has found.

Bazaarvoice surveyed 1000 UK respondents from Influenster – a social networking website for reviews, recommendations, and product discovery for consumers.

While two thirds – 66 per cent – said that they recognise the negative impact of fast fashion, 62 per cent said that the higher price point was an obstacle for them buying eco-friendly products.

A further 42 per cent said that general availability was a hurdle.

22 per cent cited size inclusivity as something that is driving their fast fashion purchases.

“As we see the cost of basic necessities increase across the UK, it understandably puts consumers in a predicament as they try to balance ethics with the income they have at their disposal,” said Ed Hill, senior vice president EMEA, Bazaarvoice. “It’s important that brands and retailers are either able to offer sustainable options that are affordable, or that they are able to take the guilt out of fast fashion purchases by properly promoting—and following through on—their sustainability commitments.”


The research also found that more consumers believe that brands use sustainability programmes as a marketing ploy – 29 per cent – than believe brands are actually being mindful of their ecological footprint, 22 per cent.

However, 41 per cent said they take it upon themselves to look through brand websites to educate themselves on sustainable practices.

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