Putting pre-loved goods on Christmas shopping lists.

Putting pre-loved goods on Christmas shopping lists.

Established retailers are highlighting second-hand goods during the run-up to Christmas with them opening physical stores specialising in pre-loved items as part of their broader circular economy activity.


John Lewis has opened a pop-up unit located within its Peter Jones store in London’s Knightsbridge that features a range of pre-loved products from high-end brands including Chanel, Moncler and Gucci and will run until the end of January. The initiative has been undertaken with Sign of The Times, which specialises in used luxury clothes and accessories at its bricks and mortar store and website. 


Beth Pettet, head of category, fashion brands at John Lewis, says: “This is our first pre-loved fashion pop-up which will offer a stylish, premium edit of designer products that will encourage our customers to support a more sustainable and unique way to shop. A pre-loved item is the perfect present to give this Christmas.”


This activity come alongside John Lewis’ other sustainability initiatives that include rental services of furniture, women’s fashion, and children’s clothing, along with an electrical recycling service.


Meanwhile, Amazon has opened its first physical Second Chance Store that offers shoppers the opportunity to purchase a range of second hand items at significant price discounts, which runs for two weeks ahead of Christmas. As many as 4,000 products have been donated by Amazon to the store, with the proceeds going to the Barnardo’s charity. 


The London-based store follows the permanent online version of the initiative, Second Chance, which has the same proposition of selling returned, refurbished or open box products. Last year it sold more than four million items in the UK.


John Boumphrey, country manager at Amazon UK, says: “Customers are telling us that they’re shopping second hand items to save money in the ongoing cost of living crisis and because they want to shop more sustainably.”


The Second Chance activity is part of Amazon’s environmental work that includes a partnership with WRAP and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation that supports the global circular economy for products.


“Amazon is committed to giving more products to Second Chance, both through helping customers shop pre-loved, and through programmes to recycle, trade-in and repair products, contributing to a more circular economy,” says Boumphrey.


While neither John Lewis nor Amazon have expressed any filtering of the goods they sell in their second hand stores in favour of environmentally-conscious brands, pre-loved online fashion site Vestaire Collective has been aggressively removing brands from its website. 


Those brands that fall into the fast-fashion category are being banned from its listings. Over recent months it has been removing the presence of a raft of recognisable names including Abercrombie & Fitch, Zara, H&M, Asos, Boohoo, and Shein.


Donnia Wone, chief impact officer at Vestaire Collective, says: “The decision to ban fast fashion was made to support our long time work to promote alternatives to the dominant model of fashion…It is our duty to act and lead the way for other industry players to join us in this movement, and together we can have an impact.”


These various actions being undertaken within the retail sector highlight how the focus on the environment and extending the life of products is intensifying and involving an increasing number of businesses.