A high-level highlight of secondhand’s value

How “The Squad” is helping keep thrift shopping in vogue

The election of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to Congress not only marked the arrival of the youngest female representative in history, but arguably one of the most fashionable. The clothing of the Democrat from New York has been the topic of conversation throughout her time in office, including a reporter tweeting a picture of Ocasio-Cortez’s outfit (without her consent) and claiming it looked like the clothes of someone who did not “struggle.”

Secondhand retail

Learn more about the way thrift stores are engaging customers here.

Part of Ocasio-Cortez’s brand is a unique style that allows her to both stand out and maintain her professionalism. As with many fashionistas, people want to know how to replicate her look — but rather than dropping links to high-end designer suits and shoes, she attributes her style to the power of thrifting.

As the fashion resale market has exploded over the past few years, its popularity has made its way to Capitol Hill: A new generation of representatives, known as “The Squad,” rely on thrifted clothing and services such as Rent the Runway. Inspired by their resourcefulness, online secondhand retailer thredUP recently released The Hill Thrift Box. The box is filled with thrifted, personalized workwear items to help wearers show up at the office (or over Zoom) in style.

With consumers increasingly demanding sustainable practices from the brands they support with their dollars, buying secondhand is a way to decrease the ecological impact of apparel production. ThredUP’s 2020 Resale Report shows the U.S. secondhand market is set to reach $64 billion in the next five years, rising from $28 billion in 2019.

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