Millennials & Gen Z’s 20 Favorite Clothing Brands

We asked 1000 13-34-year-olds to tell us their favorite clothing brands… 

The evidence that young consumers’ preferences have created a retail wasteland continues to mount. Wet Seal is the latest youth fashion victim—unable to find extra capital or a buyer since they filed for bankruptcy in 2015, the struggling retailer has been forced to close all of its remaining 171 stores throughout 42 states. The announcement closely follows news that The Limited and American Apparel have also been pushed to close down their retail locations. But some experts say it’s not Millennials’ and Gen Z’s shopping habits that are to blame. According to a Forrester retail expert and analyst, U.S. retail revenue is expected to reach $3.4 trillion this year, and it’s only those retailers “struggling to connect with consumers” that are closing stores.

But the competition is high to connect with them, and with brand names mattering less to these generations, it’s a trickier game to stay on their radar. According to a 2016 Ypulse monthly survey, 66% of 13-33-year-olds disagree with the statement “I like to wear clothing items with logos on them” and 83% agree “I don't care about what brand an item of clothing is, as long as I like it.” To find out what clothing brands are resonating with these finicky young consumers right now, we just asked 1000 13-34-year-olds to answer the question, “What is your favorite clothing brand? Think of the name on the label”* —and we’ve got the 20 brands mentioned the most:

*These were open-end response questions to allow us to capture the full range of clothing brands that 13-34-year-olds consider their favorites. As with any qualitative question, the responses include those that are top of mind and those that are most highly thought of. The lists are ordered according to…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“My work schedule can be hectic, so I snack on nuts, berries, or other non-deadly foods during any downtime.”

—Male, 32, KY

AwesomenessTV and fashion/beauty brands are coming together to make branded series for Gen Z. In the past, AwesomenessTV has worked with numerous brands to produce original content, including CoverGirl and Kohl’s. Now they’re planning a 24-part docu-series with Hollister called “This is Summer,” following teens’ high school journeys—while they’re clad in shoppable Hollister clothing of course. Our own Chief Content Officer explains that Ypulse has “found Gen Z to be fairly open to watching sponsored entertainment,” with 77% of 13-17-year-olds agreeing, "As long as the story is interesting, I don't mind that it is sponsored." (Glossy)

Fullscreen agrees that Gen Z is the generation that’s most receptive to branded content. Their survey found over half of Gen Z doesn’t mind even undisclosed branded content, and significantly more Gen Z teens than Millennials have engaged with social branded content (viewing photos, liking and sharing content and tagging friends) in the past six months. Influencer marketing wins out with the group, with over half of teens preferring influencer content to pre-roll, sponsored posts, banners, and traditional TV commercials. The sweet spot for advertisers may be branded video, especially when influencers are involved. (TubefilterAdweek)

Graduation spending is expected to reach a record $5.6 billion for the Class of 2017. Over half of the graduation gifts given will be cash, followed by greeting cards, gift cards, apparel, and electronic devices. Another trend for the year is more and more peers giving each other gifts, with a 6% lift year over year. Younger consumers will spend an average of $78.42 ,compared to 45-54-year-olds’ $119.84 and 65-and-over’s $112.34, and while greeting cards are also most popular, they’re also almost twice as likely to gift clothing. (ConsumerAffairs)

Instagram has the “most negative impact on young people’s mental wellbeing,” followed by Snapchat, according to a recent study. The image-centric platforms could “driv[e] feelings of inadequacy and anxiety,” and were rated the most poorly for their impacts on sleep, FOMO, and body image. Out of the top five most popular social media platforms, YouTube was the only one that earned a positive score. The silver lining? Some argue the evaluation is “blaming the medium for the message,” and social media/online communities are also Gen Z and Millennials’ top resource for learning about “mindfulness, meditation, and wellness,” according to Ypulse data. (The Guardian)

Lego is being called the “most powerful brand in the world,” beating out Google, Visa, and Nike. Brand Finance’s latest valuation report shows Lego’s brand value increased 68% over last year, looking at metrics like “familiarity, loyalty, promotion, marketing investment, staff satisfaction and corporate reputation.” At least some of the lift can be attributed to the successful movie franchise (The Lego Movie and The Lego Batman Movie) and its strategic partnership with Star Wars.

(Business Insider)

“I kind of don't like the commercialization of fandom culture…However, creating licensed products is one way a brand could interact.”

—Male, 24, MO

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