Surveys by Publications:
Footwear InsightTextile InsightOutdoor InsightSports InsightSportstyle
How Performance And Fashion Impact Apparel & Footwear Purchases

Convenience, longevity and a dose of wellness are the ticket when it comes to wardrobe choices based on this month’s survey results. Performance textiles touted as multi-functional and durable are top of mind for our consumer respondents, who also show enthusiasm for apparel made with textiles that offer attributes such as skin care. Also notable is increased vigilance when it comes to wearing clothing that offers insect repellency (66 percent) and clothing with UV protection (55 percent).  Very interesting are respondents’ terminology preferences: 97 percent say they have heard of “ocean plastics pollution,” while only 32 percent say they are aware of “microfiber pollution.” The catch-all phrase that most resonates with active outdoorists shopping for fitness items is “Performance,” narrowly beating out “Functional,” and far outdistancing “Fashionable” and  “Technical,” and leaving “Ultra” finishing last.

The survey, conducted by MESH01, included 175 respondents, men and women active in sports and outdoors, ages 18 to 59.

What percentage of your current workout wardrobe transitions easily from sport to street wear?

I’m a busy mom who works full time. I need to be able to hit the ground running as soon as I am done working out. Female 37

I am always working out in the middle of my day so I need to be able to be in public in my workout gear. Female 43

I pretty much live in running clothes and don’t care.
Female 31

I love clothes that are comfortable and can be dressed up with little effort. Female 38

My shorts are the only piece of workout clothing I don’t use casually. Male 26

Do you specifically seek out garments made with multi-functional fabrics to fit your lifestyle needs?
Which of these longevity characteristics resonate the most when you’re are shopping for apparel?

I like the word Durable. To me it says that it will last. That it can handle wear and tear. Female 44

I would expect way more than 50 washings from most garments. Female 48

When I buy something, I want it to last for years. Female 31

Durable tells me I can work out hard and push myself without worrying that my apparel is going to tear at the seams and embarrass me. Female 38

What catch-all term resonates the most when shopping for active apparel and footwear?
When shopping for active apparel and footwear which factors inspire you? (In order of importance)
  1. Eye Catching Design & Color
  2. Price
  3. New Technology
  4. Uniqueness
  5. Brand
  6. New Look
Are you more vigilant about wearing clothing that offers UV protection than you were 5 years ago?

I’ve begun to notice that there are new advances in Apparel these days and I pay more attention to it. Female 44

Climate change & ozone depletion. Need I say more? Female 37

We all die someday somehow. Male 27

All clothes offer enough UV protection in my opinion. If I’m going to be out all day, I’ll wear sunscreen. Male 38

I probably should be. Female 25

As I get older I realize the importance of staying out of the sun. Female 31

Are you interested in apparel made with textiles that offer wellness benefits such as skin care?

I’ve begun to notice that there are new advances in Apparel these days and I pay more attention to it. Female 44

Climate change & ozone depletion. Need I say more? Female 37

We all die someday somehow. Male 27

All clothes offer enough UV protection in my opinion. If I’m going to be out all day, I’ll wear sunscreen. Male 38

I probably should be. Female 25

As I get older I realize the importance of staying out of the sun. Female 31

Are you more vigilant about wearing clothing that offers insect repellency than you were 5 years ago?
Have you heard of microfiber pollution?

Yes, I have heard of it but it does not seem to be being very widely discussed. Female 38

Shedding from synthetic apparel is particularly problematic. They are tiny fibers that get stuck inside sewage treatment plants that can’t filter out the microfibers. Female 33

I do prefer clothing that is made from sustainable materials and does not contribute to environmental degradation. That is something that I would be willing to pay slightly more for, within reason. Female 37

Have you heard of ocean plastics pollution?

It’s horrifying! I read an article that if things don’t change within 10 years there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish! I would totally support a complete ban on single use plastics! Female 37

Yes, and I am doing more and more to do what I can to reduce plastic pollution. Female 34

It’s going to kill us all before we realize it. Plus, we already eat plastic because of it. Male 27

Quotes

How important is a “Made In America” product label in your decision making process?

SOMEWHAT IMPORTANT / 63%

“I prefer to buy American but knowing that many products are sourced elsewhere and only assembled in the US has decreased my interest in shopping this way.” Male / 30

“Love to support local companies, but not a decisive factor in my decision-making.” Male / 28

“If it is comparably priced to a product that isn’t made in USA, I’ll pick the one made in USA.”
Female / 36

“While Made in America is nice to know, price is also important.” Female / 37

“More importantly would be what state it is made in. Made in America feels quite general.” Male / 27

“It is more important when purchasing items online. If I can determine quality (and fit) for a product in a brick-and-mortar store, where it is made does not matter.” Female / 45

“The assumption is a USA made product will be quality but that does not always hold true.” Male / 28

“As long as the company treats their employees fair, it doesn’t matter what country it comes from.” Female / 30

“I generally do not think about where a product is made before grabbing it, but if I happen to notice two products side-by-side and one clearly states that it’s made in the USA, I’ll get that one, depending on the price difference.” Male / 27

VERY IMPORTANT / 22%

“I prefer Made in America to help our own economy grow and because I believe our quality is second to none.” Male / 31

“It will be the decider between two similar items.” Male / 18

Because we make a good quality products Female / 39

“I enjoy most when a product is made here in the U.S. We have all the resources and talent.” Male / 38

“Giving back to American is very important to me.” Female / 38

NOT IMPORTANT AT ALL / 22%

“There is no clear benefit to ‘Made in America’where product quality is concerned, and price is usually higher regardless.” Male / 32

“I’m more concerned about the brand than where it’s made.” Female / 37

“Things made in America are usually more expensive and not always better quality.” Female / 29

“Great quality products are made [all over] the world. I would love to keep the money in the American economy because I live here but it would not affect my decision to purchase a product.” Male / 31

Quotes

Do you relate the concern about plastics to your wardrobe products made with polyester?

YES / 34%

“I recently washed a sweater then dried it by mistake. The way it feels and ‘sounds’ makes me wonder what it really is!” Female / 49

“Natural items sound better.” Female / 56

“I do know this is a bi-product, but its synthetic nature outweighs the plastic concern.” Male / 38

“I worry about toxins in all areas of the environment, including my clothes!” Female / 48

“I try and limit plastics both in my housewares and my clothing (like polyester) as they can harm sea-life.” Male / 31

NO / 66%

“I’ve never thought of this before. I think I should.” Female / 41

“I had not considered that before, but it’s a good point that probably gets overlooked due to water bottles and grocery bags getting most of the press.” Male / 30

“I hadn’t thought about clothing being part of the growing plastic accumulation on our planet.” Male / 41

“I haven’t yet, however after reading this question I will be.” Female / 38

“I never really thought about plastic being in polyester. That’s a really great question.” Male / 29

“I’ve never really thought about that to be honest since polyester is so ingrained in the outdoor community.  This is something I’m going to have to research more.” Male / 42