Athleisure now accounts for 24% of US apparel sales, study says
The NPD Group’s recently released “The Future of Apparel” report has found that athleisure is showing no signs of slowing down as it occupies an increasingly large market share in the apparel industry.
The study, which interviewed 6,166 US consumers over the age of 18, has found that activewear currently accounts for 24% of total apparel industry sales and predicts that this market share will continue to grow over the course of this year and into 2019.
The report further highlights that sales of sweatshirts increased by double digits in the twelve months ending June 2018, while sales of active bottoms increased by 5%.
“I’m often asked if the athleisure trend is going to fade away, and the answer is no,” explains NPD’s chief industry advisor for retail, Marshal Cohen, on the organization’s website. “When you have comfort and function combined with fashion it’s difficult to go back to anything else on a regular basis.”
The report, which separates consumers into six segments, including Connected Consumers, Brand Loyals and Retail Reluctant, found that Social Shoppers, defined as being “fashion and image conscious”, and “comfortable shopping online”, were representative of typical athleisure consumers.
This said, the study also points out that part of the reason athleisure is proving so successful is the fact that it has become mainstream across all segments, having been embraced by consumers from a wide range of demographics.
Changing social attitudes concerning casual wear and increasingly health-conscious consumers have also contributed to activewear breaking out from the confines of the gym and becoming a staple both on the streets and the catwalk.
“The athleisure movement and influence on fashion continues to be a primary driver of growth opportunity for the apparel industry,” adds Cohen. “Other apparel categories are declining, which tells us that consumers are getting just what they need and want in athleisure wear. There is no doubt that the category will continue to evolve but it’s definitely here to stay for the foreseeable future.”
The full “The Future of Apparel” report is available through NPD’s website.
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