ITV selects eBay as Love Island’s fashion partner for second year running

Image: eBay

Following seven years of work with online fast fashion giants I Saw It First and Boohoo, Love Island moved in 2022 to select Love Island as its exclusive fashion partner. Contestants were, for the first time in the show’s history, only allowed to access a shared wardrobe of pre-owned clothes for season eight.

The change seemed to have a significant impact on viewers’ clothes shopping habits during the season. eBay saw a 16-fold increase in searches for ‘pre-loved clothes’ in the UK during the season. Additionally, the online marketplace’s poll of Love Island viewers found that half had a more positive impression of second-hand clothes, shoes and accessories after watching in 2022.

Sellers took note of this trend, with eBay UK noting a 24% increase in new fashion businesses signing up that offered second-hand, upcycled or otherwise ‘circular’ items.

The hype didn’t end when the season finale ended – contestant Tasha Ghouri went on to become an eBay ambassador. Given that so many previous contestants signed fast fashion brand deals after their stint on the show, this was another sign of change.

eBay has this week confirmed that it will, once again, be Love Island’s fashion partner. The ninth season of Love Island is reportedly set to begin later this month, with teaser trailers featuring new host Maya Jama airing during advert breaks on ITV.

eBay’s global general manager of fashion, Kirsty Keoghan, said: : “We’re so excited to be returning to the Love Island villa in this series to put pre-loved fashion centre-stage… [and] to continue this conversation and show the nation how good pre-loved really can look.”

As part of the partnership, fashion stylist Amy Bannerman will be sourcing pre-owned clothing from eBay sellers to curate a wardrobe for the contestants. She will also be sourcing footwear, for the first time, authenticated branded footwear from eBay Imperfects. This is the marketplace’s platform for items considered new but with small defects. Some brands list ex-display items and items which left factories but then did not meet aesthetic quality standards. Brands participating include Puma, Fila, Timberland and Off White.

Viewers will be made aware of the eBay x Love Island partnership through advertisements during Love Island breaks, showcasing how the contestants choose to “couple up with pre-loved”. eBay will also, once more, eBay will create a ‘shop the show’ tab on its website and app.

Fast fashion addiction

According to Oxfam, more than two tonnes of new clothing were purchased in the UK every minute in 2019. Britain’s overconsumption of fashion comes with a climate cost, from the raw materials and manufacturing, to importing goods. The global fashion sector is estimated to account for 7-10% of global annual emissions. This trend also breeds a waste problem; MPs on the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC) concluded in 2020 that just 1% of clothing is properly recycled at the end of its life, with the majority sent to low-quality downcycling and a significant minority donated.

Fashion spending has taken a hit during Covid-19 in the UK, as it has in many other markets. A market size decline of 2.7% between 2018 and 2023 has been recorded, and further decline is likely with a global recession on the horizon.

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