Home Blog 2021 It's time for a wardrobe refresh as consumers find occasions to head out
Apr 28, 2021

Time to Buy: Current Wardrobes No Longer Getting Us By

Subscribe to our blog

With summertime just around the corner and a chance for more outdoor activities, I am feeling the need for a wardrobe update. And while I love my current cozy, stretchy and forgiving apparel options, some future occasions will warrant categories that may have been put on the backburner. I get the feeling I may not be alone in feeling this way. 

Apparel lost nearly two million (1.8MM)* buyers last year over the age of 18. That means, nearly two million adults did not buy one article of clothing for the entire year! Not only does this call for a refresh, but it also poses the question: will items that have been hanging in our closest, for over a year now, even fit?     

When asked if their clothing size has changed, compared to a year ago, nearly 40% of females stated they were a new size, compared to 30% of males. Breaking down the 40% of females, nearly 15% state they are a size smaller, while a quarter (25%) are now a size larger.** While several reasons could be behind these changes, there are two prevalent behavioral shifts that have come to light . . . snacking and exercising.

Snack food consumption accelerated in the last year, driven in part by our changing realities during the pandemic. More stress and time at home shifted overall moods, which can impact snack food cravings, and in turn, our waistlines.

NPD’s Food & Beverage Industry Analyst Darren Seifer shared that according to NPD’s Future of Snacking report, the mental stress of pandemic living permeated snack consumption in the U.S. The average American consumed 15 more snack foods while bored in 2020 vs. 2019, and six more while feeling sad or depressed. On the flip side, fewer snack consumption occasions occurred while consumers felt “normal.”

Change in clothing size could also be related to a change in one’s fitness routine. Some consumers used their extra time to find workouts that kept them fit and socially distanced. From at-home fitness to hiking and walking, increased physical activity is another driver of sizing change.

Dirk Sorenson, NPD’s sports industry analyst, notes total home fitness sales grew 96%*** from May through December 2020 vs. the same period in 2019, as gyms were closed and consumers purchased equipment to stay fit during quarantine. Where it was possible, consumers also took to hiking and walking trails for socially distant outdoor fitness opportunities.

With two out of five adult females, and three out of ten adult males, no longer fitting into last year’s size, coupled with the potential for more occasions to attend (i.e. return to work, social, or travel), NPD’s Future of Apparel anticipates a sparked interest into more wardrobe refreshes. This will especially hold true as making do will no longer work if it no longer fits.  

*The NPD Group/Checkout
**The NPD Group / NPD Trend Tracker survey done in conjunction with NPD partner CivicScience, March 2021
***The NPD Group/U.S. Weekly Retail Tracking Service


Stay current in your industry
SUBSCRIBE


Canadian Consumers Yearn for a Wardrobe Refresh Post Pandemic
Canadian Consumers Yearn for a Wardrobe Refresh Post Pandemic

More than 50% of Canadian consumers plan to purchase new clothing once pandemic restrictions are relaxed, according to a new report from The NPD Group.

The Skinny on Skinny Jeans
The Skinny on Skinny Jeans

From new work-from-home (WFH) schedules, to more casual outings, apparel categories will evolve in a post-COVID-19 world -- and so will skinny jeans.

Fast Forward to the Future of Food
Fast Forward to the Future of Food

Established and emerging behaviors have accelerated, fast-forwarding at least five years into the future in the span of just months. Industry Advisor, David Portalatin, provides an overview of where growth and future success may be found for your business and for the overall food.

Strategize with confidence: snacking behavior insights through 2023
Strategize with confidence: snacking behavior insights through 2023

U.S. consumers have developed a new relationship with snacking. As a result, snacking motivations have changed, as have the snack foods that people are consuming. See the future of snacking in this quick video.

Newsletter

Subscribe and get key market trends and insights relevant to your industry each month.

We will not sell your information. View privacy notice. Cookie Settings