A new app has been launched that helps consumers turn unwanted clothes into discount coupons for leading retailers in the UK. reGAIN is the brainchild of award winning entrepreneur Jack Ostrowski and aims to take fashion one step closer to being a circular economy.
The innovative app has partnered with a number of fashion brands and retailers including Superdry, Asics, New Balance, boohoo and Missguided, as well as lifestyle brands and experiences including Expedia, Hotels.com, EVE Sleep and BodyBuilding.com. By boxing up their unwanted clothing and shipping them to reGAIN, consumers can earn discount coupons to use online or in store.
Ostrowski is also the founder Yellow Octopus, which has been providing sustainable stock exit solutions for British fashion retailers including ASOS, John Lewis, Primark, boohoo, Missguided, all UK supermarkets and more for over 12 years. Yellow Octopus has put its experience of handling large volumes of post-consumer textiles for leading UK retailers into the reGAIN app.
“We are realists, not idealists. We know that we can’t stop people from buying clothes, but we can incentivise them to change their habits and divert hundreds of tonnes of clothing from UK landfill. Our long-term goal is a world in which clothes never become waste,” Ostrowski said.
“The reGAIN app turns commercial sustainability into action and provides a modern solution for fast fashion lovers by rewarding sustainable behaviour. Stopping clothes from going to landfill is the first step towards a circular economy,” he added.
New research from reGAIN app shows that despite growing awareness of the importance of recycling and the circular economy, a huge number of people are still throwing unloved items of clothing in the bin. The survey found that more than one in ten throw their clothes away rather than giving them to charity or to be recycled, while in London this figure is 27%.
However, in more positive news, the majority of respondents said they would use the reGAIN app to get their unwanted clothes re-used and recycled. The survey also found that 67% of people would recycle more if they were rewarded for doing so; 66% would recycle more if it was free and easy to do so, whilst 56% would recycle more if they knew how much environmental damage sending clothes to landfill causes.
After downloading the app, users can ship their old clothes, shoes and accessories to reGAIN free of charge from over 20,000 drop-off points across the UK. In return, they will receive a discount coupon so they can shop for less. In order to keep the carbon footprint to a minimum, reGAIN app only accepts one drop per week per customer, with a minimum of 10 items in each shipment.
Once the clothes reach reGAIN app, they are either reused and reworn, recycled, upcycled, or used as combustibles for energy production.