New campaign shows you how to access wardrobe billions

11th February 2014

Research by WRAP* questions the old adage that women are better at clothes shopping than men, as they launch a new campaign to help us make the most of our clothes.

As a nation we have a staggering £30 billion worth of clothes in our wardrobes which hasn’t been worn in the last year and we bin clothing which is still worth at least £140 million**. So, whether you’re a man or a woman, there’s plenty you can do to access those wardrobe billions for yourself and share your tips with others as part of the new Love Your Clothes campaign. 

The campaign has been developed by WRAP, the organisation behind the highly successful Love Food Hate Waste campaign, which helps consumers waste less food and save money in the process. The unique twist to the Love Your Clothes campaign is that, while WRAP has the re-use and recycling know-how, we’re looking for those armchair experts in homes across the country to share their own experiences.

According to the survey, a higher number of women than men were willing to repair or refresh their old clothes, donate to charity shops or swap with friends, instead of putting them in the bin. The creation of a Love Your Clothes online community via the new website will encourage these accomplished stitchers to advise needle novices, everyday style queens to share hints and style tips on how they’ve made the most of their clothes and seasoned eBayers to share their successes with first-time sellers. Perhaps men will share their savvier shopping tips too!

The website has advice on choosing clothing designed to last longer, buying pre-owned clothes, using laundry methods that use less energy and keep your clothes looking good longer, repairing and altering your clothes, and donating, swapping or selling on unwanted garments. The site also explains how clothes that are too damaged or worn for re-use can still be donated for textile recycling rather than ending up in the bin.

In the run up to the launch, a @loveyourclothes twitter teaser campaign prompted people to test this out by going through their wardrobes and asking themselves three questions:
• Do I love it? – meaning they’ll wear it again with something else, get it altered or repaired,
• Do I want to liberate it? – meaning they’ll pass it on via sale, swap or charity donation, or
• Do I want to lose it? – meaning they’ll discard it for recycling.

Twitter users tweeted photos of their clothing using one of the hashtags #loveit #liberateit or #loseit, with a selection of the best examples available at and the facebook page

WRAP Chief Executive Liz Goodwin said: “Clothes cost money. Not getting the most out of them by mixing and matching garments, repairing favoured items, selling them on, or giving to charity shops means we’re not getting the most out of that hard earned money, and wasting scarce resources.”

Leading retailers, brands, suppliers, charities and recyclers in the clothing sector are showing their support for the campaign or committing to taking action themselves.

Coordinated by WRAP, 53 signatories*** and supporters of the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP), including retailers Tesco, M&S and Next, leading fashion designer Stella McCartney, recyclers and charities, have today pledged a 15% reduction in carbon, water and in waste going to landfill, plus a 3.5% reduction in waste arising, per tonne of clothing by 2020. This will help reduce the environmental impact of clothing from design, and manufacture, through to sale and discard. Signatories and Supporters are showing their support for the campaign on social media.

Look out for the Love Your Clothes logo appearing on the high street soon in store, on recycling banks, in charity shops and on waste collection vehicles.

For more information:
Follow the campaign on twitter @loveyourclothes

WRAP’s vision is a world where resources are used sustainably. It works in partnership to help businesses, individuals and communities improve resource efficiency.
Established as a not-for-profit company in 2000, WRAP is backed by government funding from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales.

*Consumer Insights Report
• 36% of women agree to buying more clothes than they need – compared to 20% of men
• Over a quarter of the adult population admit to buying more clothes than they need (28% agree) and fewer than half decide what they need before they go shopping and stick to it (44%).
• Men are far less likely to make impulse clothes purchases when out shopping, with over half deciding what items they need before going shopping and sticking to the plan (53%, compared to 35% of women)

**The UK currently bins 350,000 tonnes clothing (worth at least £140 Million), that is the equivalent weight of almost 30,000 London buses which, if lined up end-to-end, would stretch approximately from London to Paris.

*** SCAP signatories represent 40% of clothes sold in the UK, and in 2012 together they sold 292,783 tonnes of clothing. To date 29 signatories and 24 supporters have signed up, including 12 retailers and 15 charities, recyclers and collectors.

Local authorities are also keen to help their residents, with several already committed to using the Love Your Clothes brand, including North Lincolnshire Council, Kirklees Council and London Borough of Merton. 

The brand will appear on council leaflets and websites to promote the councils’ textile recycling collection service and provide practical advice for residents to keep their clothes in use for longer.

SCAP signatories and supporters
Arcadia Group
A1 Textiles
Antur Waunfawr
Bag it Up
BCR Global Textiles
Better Cotton Initiative
British Heart Foundation
British Retail Consortium
Cardiff and Vale College
Cath Kidston
Centre for Sustainable Fashion (LCF)
Clothes Aid
Coleg Sig Gar
Crest Co-operative
East London Textiles Ltd
Ethical Expert
Fairtrade Foundation
Global Organic Textiles Standard
I&G Cohen
Interstoff Apparels Ltd
John Lewis
Lawrence M Barry & Co (LMB)
Marks and Spencer
Nathans Wastesavers
N Brown Group
New Look
Next Best Clothing/Bag2school
Nottingham Trent University
Salvation Army Trading Company
Scottish Textile and Leather Association
Seren Cf
Stella McCartney
Stitched up
Taha Tekstil
Ted Baker
Textile Recycling Association
The Textile Institute
University of Huddersfield
University of South Wales
Wales Government
Welsh Retail Consortium
Worn Again

Follow us on Twitter at @Wrap_UK


Shona O'Donovan

PR Manager
01295 819690