Issue #125

Megan Hotson


Welcome to your weekly dose of TooXToo, this week featuring Primark’s vintage debut, Nike x Clarks collaborate with influencers from the African Diaspora, Dove’s says goodbye to gold, and McDonalds sells non-existent burgers…

Primark’s vintage debut

Primark – a fashion retailer synonymous with fast fashion, and contemporary basics, has diversified their offering with the addition of a vintage garments section in their Manchester and Birmingham stores.

From retro shirts to vintage puffer jackets or denim flares – customers with an eye for pre-loved, or older-style clothing are excited by the news of this new launch. The retailer hopes to convert their existing ‘haters’ who chastise them for exacerbating the fast fashion industry and exploiting those who work within it.

Connecting with local, ‘slow fashion’ vintage retailers Primark wants to demonstrate their commitment to more sustainable operations looking ahead. The new vintage section of their stores have been called ‘Worn Well’, and will allow customers to browse a selection of branded and unbranded, pre-loved garments.

As well as promoting sustainability, Primark says they are hoping to demonstrate the importance of shopping to express individuality, by selling one-of-a kind pieces for customers in-store.

Primark have responded to the desire from today’s consumer for more ethical, and sustainable retail. In addition, Primark have created these departments in their more Northern locations as an effort to respond to hyper-local demand for vintage, pre-loved fashion.

Primark are shifting the bad connotations which loom around their brand’s operations by responding to the evolving consumer who will not tolerate unethical, or un-considered production, consequently future proofing their identity in the context of a fast-changing retail landscape.

Nike X Clarks collaborate with influencers from the African Diaspora

The African diaspora are a core audience of influencers, and consumers with impact and reach that has a global stretch. Both Nike, and Clarks have announced collaborations which celebrate this marginalised group.

Nike have partnered with Afrochella co-founder and CEO, Abdul Karim Abdullah to create and launch the ‘Little Accra’ trainers. The shoes draw inspiration from the diverse community in Little Accra which is home to a large Ghanian diaspora. To reflect this community, the sneakers colourways are bold and vibrant, and the insoles read ‘Sharing stories’ – a key sentiment held within this community.

These shoes are just one of other examples that have been designed to celebrate and champion African heritage and culture.

These Brands recognise the importance of collaborating with cultural influencers that transcend European borders. Not only will these kind of collaborations produce products that are representative of consumers across the global, they will facilitate the integration of diasporic communities long term.

By entering new markets, Nike and Clark's are uncovering novel opportunities, and demonstrating representation as well as emotive storytelling.

Important to consider is the average age of the African continent: 25. This is the youngest in the world. So, as the African population continues to grow, it is key for brands to think about how they can build connections, and appeal to a more global, diverse consumer group.

Dove says goodbye to Gold

Dove’s new campaign #KeepTheGrey is designed to protect against ageism and sexism in the workplace.

The termination of Canadian news host, Lisa LaFlamme’s contract at CTV national news due to her going grey – is one of many cases that is being pushed into the public eye to raise the severity of the existing problem.

Dove Canada has replaced its familiar gold logo, with a grey version across their social media profiles. The brand is encouraging others to participate in their campaign, changing their profile pictures to grayscale to show their solidarity as part of the #KeepTheGrey message.

Dove has commented on their recent actions: "Aging is beautiful. We should all be able to do it on our own terms, and without any consequences."

The brand is also donating 100,000 Canadian dollars to Catalyst, a Canadian nonprofit dedicated to creating inclusive workplaces for all women.

Action from brands like dove toward this scale of discrimination is essential in garnering support, and attention for a specific cause. This purpose-driven campaign from Dove, demonstrates their commitment to making society a fairer, more inclusive space for its consumers.

McDonald’s sells non-existent burgers…

Fast food giants’ Spanish collection of restaurants have begun selling the ‘burger that couldn’t be’ to support farms that have been impacted by wildfires.

Responding to the recent ravaging of approximately 250,000 hectares of Spanish land that has been hit this year during the heatwaves and spells of drought, the brand has been compelled to take action to raise awareness and help the local communities.

The burger that couldn’t be, translates into ‘La hamburguesa que no pudo ser’ and will be represented by empty black burger boxes. These empty cardboard packages will act as a reminder of those crops that have been destroyed in flames, and the farmers who have lost their main source of income.

Customers can choose to add one of these (non-existent) burgers to their order to donate 1 euro to affected farmers.

This is not the first time McDonald’s have responded in this way to help those affected by a crisis. In 2020, they created the ‘Big Good’ hamburger to help the country’s farmers who were affected by the adversity of the pandemic.

Their latest efforts in response to the wildfires in Spain are a continuation of their commitment to helping their local communities, giving back to the very people that invest in their brand.

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