The team at Rerouted is always on the lookout for incredible community initiatives. We are psyched to promote a brilliant idea from some peers across the pond. Oxfam, “is a global movement of millions of people working together to end poverty”. How freaking cool that they focus on used goods as part of their mission.
Oxfam has gotten the word out and encouraged countless people to donate their old stuff & choose used. We love the sentiment & want to pump up that message.
What is Second-Hand September?
In the UK, an organization named, Oxfam, launched a month-long program named Second-Hand September. This initiative encourages people to spend 30 days buying nothing new. We love that concept. The Rerouted team wishes that no one ever had to buy new gear again. Now, we get that that is not a realistic outcome, but - the sharing economy deserves a boost.
Why Does Second-Hand September Matter?
We are building this company because we know what the data is saying. The climate is changing & we are running out of resources. Oxfam offers us a terrifying stat. 95% of textile waste can be recycled or reused. We need to step up. We need to hold each other accountable. This is a challenge for people to spend a month discovering new ways to buy the things they need. It’s a promise that we can choose better.
The Rerouted team set out to make it possible for you to always choose used. We saw this as an opportunity to step it up. To challenge ourselves to permanently make this decision.
Ways to Participate in the Circular Economy
The circular economy is so much more than just second-hand outdoor adventure gear. We know that is the truth. While we care deeply about our niche, we wanted to provide a plethora of alternative options for you all to get involved in this movement.
The Rerouted team thinks that this shouldn’t only be a month-long challenge. Second-Hand September is a really good start, but we need to think bigger. It’s not for just one specific month. It’s something we can start including in our daily lives, regardless of the season.
We think that we should be seeking to change our lifestyles, not just one month. We realize that shifting our behavior is hard. Sometimes it can take a nudge in the right direction. After all - the easier it is to be sustainable; the more likely we are to be responsible consumers. We at Rerouted are here to help give everyone some tips to turn Second-Hand September into Used Gear Year into All Sustainable, All The Time.
Like building a business, or getting better at a sport - our path to being responsible consumers happens by compounding small changes over time. We believe this should be a global initiative, however, the advice following focuses on the Outdoor Industry niche.
Little Differences Can Make a Big Impact.
1. Take Care of Your Stuff
This is a critical point that we think too many people aren’t considering. The first thing we should all do is make sure to take care of the things we use. Extend its life in any way possible. There are a bunch of fantastic companies out there that are helping people make gear last longer. We believe in the parable of teaching a person to fish, so we are doing all we can to help you care for gear with our Knowledge Library.
We have found so many companies that are doing great work to help people save their gear for themselves. Our friends over at Noso Patches offer a great product. Additionally, we learn nearly everything from YouTube these days. Whatever you need to know is a search away. Need to know how to repair a leaky whitewater raft? Watch this rad video from River Rat Gear Review.
There are tons of local repair shops. Be sure to search locally first if you want to outsource it. Save on those carbon (and financial) shipping costs. If you don’t want to fix it yourself, there are plenty of locals who make their living taking care of your most cherished outdoor equipment. Reach out to our team if you need our help tracking down a reliable gear repair shop. (email@example.com).
There are tons of ways to extend the life of your gear. Always consider this as the preferred option.
2. Choose Sustainable Brands
The retail industry is changing quickly because of the demands and expectations of buyers. This is the only way to shift how companies create products. We know that gear will always need to be made from scratch (how else would we stay in business?), but we also recognize that we must force manufacturers to create durable, sustainable & ethically sourced products. The way we do this is by leveraging our purchasing power to support the brands we believe in. It’s impossible to ignore how our influence is forcing brands to change their tunes. Now, we must continue to hold them accountable.
The outdoor industry leads this transition to complete sustainability. Patagonia led the way decades ago striving to build a company that would last for one hundred years. Now, many are following suit and doing the same. Brands must start valuing the positive impact we have in solving problems more than the bottom line.
We are believers in choosing used at all costs. But, for things like helmets, ropes & other safety gear - we don’t have a choice. We do what we can to make the best decisions that we can when our hands are forced.
3. Be Creative & Upcycle
All our clothes can be recycled once destroyed. We just reupholstered our office ottoman with old jeans and material older than our founder and it turned out pretty freaking awesome. Those jeans were just in a bin & now they are displayed proudly.
A hoodie can turn into a tank top. Your ski boots can be planter boxes. Old ropes dog leashes. Before you throw anything away, say to yourself, what could I try to do with this. Because if you fail & your it doesn’t work - then it makes its way to the landfill anyway. No need to destroy functional gear for a project. You make this choice because your gear is ratty, broken & wrecked.
Share a photo of your busted gear with us and we will help you brainstorm ideas. Tag @rerouted.co on Instagram or Facebook with the #reroutedgear.
4. Pass Gear Onwards
As an online used gear platform solution, the Rerouted team favors this choice. We want you all to get your gear onto the next generation of wilderness advocates. We want you to make money or donate to charity while you get that gear out of your garages & closets. We want you to choose our platform - but if you don’t there are tons of other ways to pass that gear forwards.
You can track down your local used gear. We’re sure they’d love to take most of it on and help you move it. We know that there are usually several places for you to simply offload it all to a charity via donation. This is fantastic too. These options are great. We’d be happy to help you find a local option.
Lastly, find friends & family who would happily take it off your hands. This is maybe our favorite option. Gear means a lot to us. We think that it should stay in the family if possible.
The Moral of the Story
We need to strive to make better choices with every purchase. There are so many things that we can be doing to kick the cycle of used gear into hyperspeed. We are here to support all of the above options. Please leave comments below to help your fellow Rerouters!