5 of the world’s most sustainable fashion hubs

Second-hand fashion goes mainstream.Picture: File.

Second-hand fashion goes mainstream.Picture: File.

Published Apr 3, 2024


Thrifting remains one of the most famous sustainable forms of fashion in the world. Thrifting is when second-hand clothes are given new life and sold to new owners, promoting recycling.

ARKA.com has ranked the biggest cities leading sustainably in their recent data. The ranking is based on thrift store counts, search interest in sustainable fashion, and key metrics like sustainability and recycling rates.

All eyes were on London, Paris and New York as they are known as the world fashion capitals, and they all made it to the top 10 of the most sustainable fashion hubs.

London tops the list as the biggest sustainable fashion hub, with an index score of 309.47. With about 200 thrift stores, the city shows growth towards second-hand fashion.

London’s notable sustainability rate of 81.65% and high recycling rate further secure the city’s position in the ranking.

Thrifting is a popular way to get affordable designer items. Picture: Instagram

New York comes second with an impressive score of 272.33, thanks to its leading online interest in sustainable fashion by highest search volume in terms like “thrift stores”, “vintage stores near me” and “sustainable fashion”.

This high level of engagement with vintage fashion, thrift stores and eco-friendly clothing, along with a many thrift stores, positions New York prominently in the rankings.

Berlin takes third position with a score of 206.46, highlighted by the highest recycling rate of 49.80%. With 160 thrift stores and a notable sustainability rate of 83.36%, Berlin stays at the top of the ranking.

Copenhagen lands in fourth place with a total index of 188.08. It leads in a sustainable fashion, with the highest sustainability rate among the cities at 85.68%.

Copenhagen's status as a sustainable city is further supported by a lot of thrift stores and a strong recycling rate, making it a model for sustainable fashion practices.

Paris is number five, with an index score of 183.57. The city mixes its famous fashion history and eco-friendly practices with a lot of thrift stores and an interest in sustainable fashion online.

The city’s solid sustainability rate alongside its recycling efforts secures its position among the top cities for sustainable fashion.