Guidance on Consumer Behaviour

Through our consumer research and our consumer campaign, WRAP is revealing consumers attitudes to sustainable products as well as encouraging them to take a more sustainable approach to how they view their clothing. 

What can my organisation do?

By using WRAP’s research, organisations can gain consumer feedback into sustainable products in the clothing industry and gain insight on how to market more durable, sustainable and less resource intensive products to consumers.

Consumer research

Both supporters and signatories are part of the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP) Steering Group, consisting of major retailers, brands, recyclers, sector bodies, NGOs and charities, working together to take action in four working groups: Re-use & Recycling, Influencing consumer behaviours, Metrics and Design for Extended Clothing Life.

Our working group focussed on consumer behaviours allows organisations to work together to understand and influence how consumers act toward end of life, re-use, repaired or sustainable clothing fabrics and fibres.

Our working group on consumer behaviour >>
Resources to communicate with consumers >>
Love Your Clothes consumer brand >>
Textiles Tracker consumer attitudes and behaviours >> 

Love Your Clothes

WRAP is supporting businesses by encouraging consumers to change the way they use, re-use and recycle their clothing through our Love Your Clothes campaign.

Our consumer campaign provides easy, actionable tips for consumers on how to:

  • Extend the life of clothing
  • Reduce the environmental impact of cleaning
  • Deal with unwanted clothes and second hand goods
  • Make the most of their wardrobe

Love your clothes >>

Citizen survey into clothing behaviours during lockdown 

In May 2020, WRAP ran a survey into clothing behaviours during lockdown. The survey of 2,422 UK adults 18+ found that UK citizens were set to dispose of 67 million clothes and textiles as UK came out of lockdown. One third of those citizens had on average 11 items they no longer wanted. The research found a trend towards greater environmental awareness - with 50% of UK citizens actively avoid generating clothing waste.

Research into citizen clothing behaviours during lockdown >>

Consumer research into second-hand shopping

In 2013, WRAP ran a study into consumer second-hand shopping behaviour to better understand purchasing and re-use behaviours. This research focusses on value for priority material streams which are; textiles, electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) and furniture.

Study into second-hand shopping to identify re-use behaviour >>

Measuring clothing life and use

Understanding how consumers wear and care for clothing is key to meeting the SCAP 2020 action area: Extending the useful life of clothes. By measuring the active life and uses of clothing, organisations can understand how to extend the life of the clothing they make, design for end of life, or find innovative ways to re-use and recycle end of life clothing.

Measuring the active life of clothing >>

Sustainable clothing guidance

Part of our Sustainable Clothing Guide details consumer behaviour around repair, re-use and recycling. In particular, the Sustainable Clothing Guide gives organisations guidance on what they can encourage customers to do to increase the lifespan or durability of their product.

Using the Sustainable Clothing Guide, organisations can gain an understanding about repair and alteration support – to assist their consumers in extending the life of their products. Or they can find information about partnerships with charities and re-use organisations, to take a more sustainable approach to disposing of second-hand clothing.

Sustainable clothing guide: Repair and alteration support >>
Sustainable clothing guide: Re-use support >>

Where next?

Want to find out more about consumer behaviour? Take a look at our knowledge-base for further reports, tools, guides and case studies:

Reports >>
Guides >>
Tools >>
Case studies >>