“Sharing clothes, instead of throwing them away, is good for your wallet and the environment. Share them forward if you want to be fashion-forward,” says Henrik Selin
, head of the department for intercultural dialogue at the Swedish Institute.
Sharewear gives people access to clothes they may not otherwise be able to afford, and the best part is, it’s guilt-free; there's none of that, "But do I really
need those? I’ve got 55 pairs of shoes already," back-and-forth.
Still, isn’t sharing clothes with people you don’t know a little bit...weird? Lizzie Harrison, a researcher at the Centre for Sustainable Fashion
and founder of the Leeds Community Clothes Exchange, thinks the emotional connection you could have with the previous sharer is actually part of the appeal. “Instagram makes people transparent," she says. "If you have a dress and I want to have that dress, I can look at pictures of you in it, and also see your cat and where you went on holiday last month. There is something interesting about this connection with the previous owner, because it is such a personal thing.”
Of course, Sharewear isn’t the only platform out there that helps you be a more environmentally friendly shopper: Rentez-Vous
loans designer clothes from upcoming brands; Vestiaire Collective
makes high fashion less of a major investment and more of a hobby by offering users somewhere to buy and sell luxury items; and then there’s Depop
, the app that’s enabled millions of thrifty teenagers and twenty- and thirtysomethings to buy clothes, wear them for a few weeks, then fling them at the highest bidder.