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Clothing swaps explained

Clothing swaps explained

By Imogen Berrington


According to the Ellen Macarthur Foundation, the average number of times a garment is worn before it is thrown away has decreased 36% compared to 15 years ago. In a world of fast fashion, overconsumption and overproduction, it is necessary that we start to love our clothes to make them last.


This is where clothing swaps can come in. But what are they? To put it simply, a clothing swap is when a group of people gather with a bag full of clothes that they no longer wear and exchange the items for something from someone else’s wardrobe. This promotes circular fashion leaving you with new clothes and the planet a lot less polluted.

 why swap clothing is good for planet

Clothing swaps come in different forms, some are organised and set up all around the world; these are rising in popularity as more consumers turn to sustainable practices. If you are based in the UK, head to Eventbrite to catch up with the clothing swaps happening near you.


If you want to take part in clothing swaps from the comfort of your own come, then do not worry, apps like Untagged and Nuw allow you to just this. Apps like these are popping up everywhere. All you have to do is upload images of your unwanted clothes before the app’s algorithms analyse and give you credits in return. You can then use these tokens to spend on new ones. There really is no excuse, go get swapping.


However, clothing swaps do not all have to be this formal. Next time you meet with a group of your friends, what is stopping you all going through your wardrobe beforehand and bringing the dress that no longer fits or the jeans that you have fallen out of love with to swap with the clothes your friends were just going to throw out? Make a night of it.

 swap clothing

Here are our top three tips to face the clothing swaps:

  • Make sure you use clothes in good condition. Give away the clothes in a state that you would want them, even if you are giving them to your best mate. This means washing them beforehand and ensuring that there are no rips, tears or stains!


  • Ask yourself, do you really need this? Even though clothes swapping is a sustainable option for expanding your wardrobe, it is still necessary to make sure that you will love and make the most of what you are buying.


  • The final tip for facing clothing swaps online or in person is to take your time. Clothing swaps especially the in-person ones can be quite overwhelming if a lot of people have turned up but, if you take your time and relax, you can always find the best pieces.


Well, what do you think, are clothing swaps the future of fashion and the answer to the devastations of fast fashion? We think so. Let us know in the comments below.

 why swap clothes?