Home / Drawdown

Creating a Circular Fashion Industry With Best Sustainable Packaging Practices
Girlfriend Collective E-Commerce Packaging 

Creating a Circular Fashion Industry With Best Sustainable Packaging Practices

It’s no secret that the fashion industry negatively impacts the environment. Research conducted by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation found that textile production generates 1.2 billion tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually.

To put that in perspective, that’s more emissions than international flights and oceanic shipping—combined. With 150 billion garments produced every year and 87% ending up in landfills or incinerators, the call for change has never been louder. 

Fortunately, Resale-as-a-Service models are gaining traction with socially-responsible Gen Z consumers. With Earth Month in full swing, we wanted to celebrate the emerging resale market and the pioneers leading the way to a earth-friendly future in the fashion industry by adopting best sustainable packaging practices.

In this article, we’ll discuss how resale models work, the brands adopting them, and the role sustainable packaging plays in creating a circular fashion industry.

“In the clothing sector, the resale market is expected to grow 16 times faster than non-resale over the next four years.”

thredUP mailer packaging
Image courtesy of thredUP

Brands Adopting the Resale-as-a-Service Model

The increasing demand for sustainable alternatives has fueled the fashion industry’s rise of resale models. The second-hand clothing market is booming, with 2022 seeing a market size of $182.4 billion, according to GlobalData. 

Forward-thinking brands like thredUP, Poshmark, Reflaunt, and The RealReal are embracing resale models to leverage pre-owned inventory while maximizing profits and creating a circular economy. Here’s how they’re doing it.


thredUP is an online consignment and thrift store that allows users to buy and sell used clothing, shoes, and accessories. To sell items, people can request a Clean Out Kit, fill it with quality used items, and send it back to thredUP. ThredUP inspects, prices, and lists the items for sale on their website. Sellers receive a percentage of the sale price once their items are sold.


Poshmark is a social commerce platform where people can buy and sell clothing and accessories. It connects buyers and sellers, promoting circular fashion and sustainable consumption through a convenient, interactive app and website.


Reflaunt is a technology company that empowers luxury fashion brands to create and manage their own resale programs. It enables brands to extend their product life cycles and encourage a circular economy. Reflaunt also connects brands to a network of second-hand marketplaces, increasing the visibility and reach of the pre-owned items.

The RealReal

The RealReal is a luxury consignment platform that focuses on selling pre-owned designer items. People can send in their luxury items for expert authentication and appraisal before they’re listed on the platform. The RealReal’s commitment to authenticity, sustainability, and innovation has helped them become a trusted marketplace for customers.

“By moving to a circular system, the [fashion] industry can unlock a $560 billion economic opportunity. Realizing this opportunity requires new business models and collaboration across the value chain to keep safe materials in use.”

How the Resale-as-a-Service Model Works

The Resale-as-a-Service model encourages retailers and resale service providers to buy and sell pre-owned items from consumers. The resale model may differ between platforms. Here’s a general outline of how it works:

1) Strategic Partnerships:

Retailers integrate their business operations with a resale service provider’s platform to enhance ecommerce capabilities and inventory management.

2) Collect Inventory:

Customers can drop off or send their pre-owned items to the retailer or the resale service provider.

3) Quality Control:

The resale service provider inspects the items to ensure they meet quality standards and are suitable for resale.

4) Listing & Pricing:

The resale service provider lists the items on their platform or the retailer’s website, setting competitive prices based on brand, condition, and demand.

5) Product Marketing:

 The retailer and the resale service provider promote the pre-owned items, attracting eco-conscious customers looking for sustainable fashion alternatives.

6) Payment Processing:

Customers purchase pre-owned items, either online or in-store. The resale service provider handles the payment and transaction process.

7) Order Fulfillment:

Once an item is sold, the resale service provider or retailer ships the item to the customer using appropriate packaging.

8) Revenue Sharing:

The retailer and the resale service provider share the proceeds from the sale, with a percentage going to each party.

Sustainable Packaging Options for Resale-as-a-Service Models

Sustainable packaging is a key element in Resale-as-a-Service models, especially in ecommerce, where packaging waste is a growing concern. When you deliver orders in sustainable ecommerce retail packaging, customers may associate your brand with social responsibility.

In a sense, your brand’s values are aligned with your customers, leading to a deeper emotional connection with your customers. Here are two examples of CRP’s custom packaging and best sustainable packaging practices that can help you reduce expenses, enhance your customer’s experience, and minimize your environmental impact.

Poly Mailers
Image courtesy of Creative Retail Packaging

100% RECYCLED Poly Mailers: Cost-effective Ecommerce Packaging for Outbound Shipments

When your customer is on the receiving end, it’s best to use high-quality and functional packaging to create a positive first impression. CRP’s poly mailers are a popular and ideal choice for your outbound shipments for various reasons.

1) Cost-effective:

The lightweight nature of poly mailers helps your brand save on shipping costs while providing adequate protection for the products inside.


CRP’s poly mailers can be made from up to 100% recycled content, which is a strong sustainability story to tell through your packaging.

3) Water-resistant:

They protect the contents from moisture or weather-related damage during transit.

4) Versatile:

CRP’s poly mailers are available in various sizes and styles, allowing you to find the best packaging solution for your needs.

5) Durability:

The durable material reduces the risk of tearing, ensuring a positive customer experience and minimizing product returns.

Expandable Paper Mailers
Image courtesy of Creative Retail Packaging featuring 100% recyclable and compostable expandable paper mailer.

100% Recyclable Paper Mailers: A Simple Packaging Solution for Customer Shipping

When your company is on the receiving end, resealable paper mailers are a viable option for your customers to send in products. In the resale market, customers prioritize affordability and practicality over ornate packaging.

Brands like thredUP have created kits with everything a seller needs to “clean out” their closet. Consider including resealable paper mailers in your deliveries to enhance your inventory collection efforts while contributing to a circular economy. CRP’s resealable paper mailers can provide numerous benefits for your business.

1) Eco-friendly:

Made from 100% recycled material, our paper mailers are biodegradable and compostable.

2) Cost-effective:

Paper mailers are often more affordable than other packaging options, providing cost savings for your business.

3) Customizable:

You can easily customize paper mailers with logos, colors, and designs, enhancing brand visibility and customer experience.

4) Easy-to-use:

Resealable paper mailers are simple to pack, seal, and ship, streamlining the packaging process and saving time for your customers.

5) Protective:

Our paper mailers feature a reinforced design that offers added protection for delicate items during shipping.

Partner With CRP as Your Sustainable Packaging Supplier

The Resale-as-a-Service model is revolutionizing the fashion industry, empowering businesses to embrace best sustainability packaging practices and adapt to the growing demand for eco-conscious shopping experiences. 

CRP is dedicated to providing sustainable packaging solutions for your resale endeavors. Our customizable options can be tailored to your specific needs. 

With our range of recyclable paper mailers, poly mailers, and other eco-friendly packaging options, we’re committed to helping your brand succeed in the resale market while minimizing your environmental impact.

Ready to join the circular fashion economy? Get in touch with us today and discover how our best sustainable packaging solutions can enhance your brand’s resale model. Together, we can transform the fashion industry and create a greener future.

Click here to schedule a call: https://creativeretailpackaging.com/contact/.