H&M launching clothes rental service to combat effects of fast fashion

H&M are set to to trail a clothing rental service in an attempt to be more environmentally friendly amid the boom of fast fashion.

The retailer, which has nearly 5,000 stores worldwide, are launching the initiative in its flagship store in Stockholm, Sweden.

Shoppers will be able to subscribe to the service for sound £28 and rent up to 50 garments for 30 days before they must return the items, or purchase what they have borrowed.

The high street giant, which is currently the second largest retailer in the world, made the move after facing criticism in recent years for its part in the negative impact the fashion industry has had on the environment.

H&M is expected to trial the service for three months and if it proves successful, it is likely to be rolled out internationally.

The retailer is ‘following in the footsteps of competitors Banana Republic and Urban Outfitters’ who also launched similar services earlier this year.

Business of Fashion reports that the rental market has an estimated worth of $1billion in 2018, as it offers shoppers a way to access fashion in a more sustainable way.

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H&M will also be offering subscribers other perks as part of the green service including stylist consultations.

Stylists will help loyalty members to choose items they can then rent for the week, allowing them to pick up three pieces at a time.

They will also have clothing repair services at the store to encourage shoppers to recycle and reuse, as well as a coffee shop and beauty bar on site.

“We have a huge belief in rental, but we still want to test and learn quite a lot and do tweaks and changes,” Daniel Claesson, H&M’s head of business development said.

“We love offering our fans something extra and we also want to encourage our customers to look on fashion in a circular way as we aim to lead the change towards a circular fashion industry,” H&M added.

It’s believed H&M, which is known for its quirky designer partnerships including coveted collections with the likes of Balmain, Moschino and Erdem and Giambattista Valli, will offer shoppers the chance to pick from their Conscious Exclusives.

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The new rental service comes after a report by the United Nations which revealed that the fashion industry “is responsible for as much as 10 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions and consumes more energy than aviation and shipping combined”.

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