See How Many Car Miles You Save When Secondhand Shopping With This Calculator

Today The RealReal announces the launch of an exciting sustainability calculator that aims to quantify the positive effects of buying secondhand clothing. The initiative coincides with National Consignment Day (today, October 1) and began with the measurement of 2.5 million women's clothing items consigned to The RealReal since 2012. The results showed that these purchases offset a whopping 65 million car miles in greenhouse gasses and energy during that six-year time period.

"It takes my breath away that people consigning apparel alone have made such a tremendous impact — the equivalent of 340,000 trees planted,” founder Julie Wainwright said in a press release. Keep scrolling for more on the new calculator.


(Image credit: Courtesy of TheRealReal)

The initiative applies a four-pronged methodology when calculating the environmental effects on the planet. If you are actively consigning the four pillars outlined by The RealReal below should make you feel pretty amazing about yourself:

Impact by Material: Energy, greenhouse gas (GHG), and water consumption were estimated based on global averages for each material type. The RealReal does not own the manufacturing process of its goods.

Item Archetypes: The most common women’s clothing types were used to develop four archetypes for calculation: dresses, tops, jackets, and knitwear.

Fabric Composites: The RealReal defragmented the inventory mix into the most common item-fabric combinations (i.e., silk, cotton, polyester, viscose, wool, and linen).

Product Type Composites: Since every item consigned is unique, The RealReal used sample weights to develop average weight measures for each archetype fabrication group.


(Image credit: Courtesy of TheRealReal)

In the near future, consignors on The RealReal "will be able to track the cumulative impact of their consignments with The RealReal, e.g., they'll be able to see in their dashboard, based on their consignment history, how many car miles they've offset, how many seedlings they've planted (GHG emissions), and water saved," the press release went on to state. Pretty exciting, right? Scroll down to shop a few standouts from The RealReal while also helping preserve our planet, and click to learn more about the calculator.

Click for five simple ways to make your shopping habits more sustainable.

Nicole Kliest
Freelance Contributor

Nicole Kliest is a freelance writer and editor based in New York City who focuses on fashion, travel, food, wine, and pretty much anything else that's amusing to write about. After graduating from Pepperdine University with a bachelor's in journalism and creative writing, she started her career back in 2010 as Who What Wear's photo editor and throughout the last decade has contributed to publications including Fashionista, Harper's Bazaar, Elle, The Zoe Report, PopSugar, Fodor's Travel, and several others. She also copywrites and has worked with clients such as Frame, Sea, 3x1, Intelligentsia, and others to develop brand voices through storytelling and creative marketing. She's very passionate about the ways we can improve our sustainability efforts in the fashion industry as well as cultivating content that's diverse and inclusive of all people. When she's not checking out the latest restaurant opening in her West Village neighborhood or riding her bicycle along the West Side Highway, she can be found scheming her next trip somewhere around the world. (Up next is Vienna.)