- Indicating the continued rise of recommerce, H&M has teamed up with ThredUp to launch its first resale service, “H&M Pre-Loved,” according to a Tuesday press release.
- Starting Tuesday, the fast-fashion retailer will begin offering used items across various categories such as sport, denim and kids. Shoppers can also buy from a “collabs” section featuring items from H&M’s previous guest designer collections and collaborations.
- The program is part of the fast-fashion retailer’s efforts to extend the use of its products and establish a circular business model.
H&M’s track record with sustainability is checkered. As a fast-fashion business, the retailer’s business model alone has pegged it as less environmentally friendly than others, but the retailer’s own efforts to promote more sustainable options have also faced scrutiny.
In June, the Higg Materials Sustainability Index, a tool which H&M used to measure the environmental impacts of its materials, came under fire for likely running afoul of laws in Norway that prohibit misleading marketing. Around the same time, Quartz published an investigation alleging that H&M’s environmental scorecards were misleading or deceptive. Now with its resale program, the retailer is trying once again to turn around its reputation as a polluter.
“With our new ‘H&M Pre-Loved’ resale shop powered by ThredUp’s Resale-as-a-Service, we’re ensuring customers can find the largest amount of stylish, preloved H&M pieces ever to give them a second life,” Abigail Kammerzell, head of sustainability at H&M North America, said in a statement. “We need to take responsibility for the impact fashion has on climate and the environment. Circular business models can help us reduce and limit this negative impact, while continuing to deliver fashion and style for our customers. With the launch of our first resale model in the U.S. market, we’re taking the next big step in that direction.”
Resale, and the roster of brands signing up to work with the likes of ThredUp and Trove, are growing. Last May, ThredUp released a report predicting that the secondhand market will reach $82 billion by 2026. In addition to H&M, the resale tech platform has partnered with brands and retailers like Kate Spade New York, Madewell and J. Crew to resell used products.
But as ThredUp grows its list of partner brands, other resale companies are also snapping up more clients interested in introducing resale programs. In October, Shein, another rapidly growing fast-fashion retailer, introduced its resale platform in collaboration with the recommerce technology company Treet. Meanwhile, Eddie Bauer and Moosejaw have turned to Arrive and Recurate, respectively, to launch their resale options for customers.