With hygiene a top concern for customer uptake, an eco-cleaning and repair infrastructure is badly needed to loop garments into a circular economy.
Traditional dry cleaning won’t cut it because clothing reuse business models ought to positively impact the environment and keep clothes in circulation for longer. Also, the marketing message for circular fashion is sustainability gains.
But as more brands and retailers investigate business models like renting, reselling and even repairs, they encounter a gap in the market. At least, these are the thoughts of circular fashion expert, Roosmarie Ruigrok. “The big fashion brands are struggling to find eco-cleaning solution companies with proven credentials and a wider geographical spread,” she says. Yet Ruigrok doesn’t think brands will internalise cleaning operations like US-based Rent The Runway (RTR), which has gone on to build the world’s largest dry cleaning facility to support its operation.