What Is The Spring Second Hand Challenge?

By Charlie Colville

1 year ago

Miquita Oliver tells us how to get involved

While second hand shopping has become pretty mainstream these days, we still find that the practice tends to be more commonly associated with fashion than anything else. ‘Gumtree’s research found that 66 percent of Brits are aware of the impact of fast fashion on the planet,’ says Miquita Oliver. ‘But only 47 percent understand the negative impact of fast homewares, so there’s still a huge job to be done.’ Miquita has teamed up with Gumtree this Earth Month to kick start a Consumption Rebellion, and will be taking part in the platform’s Spring Second Hand Challenge by pledging to avoid shopping new for the next three months where possible. Find out how you can also get with the challenge involved below.

Miquita Oliver On The Spring Second Hand Challenge

Miquita Oliver

Miquita Oliver

Hi Miquita, thanks for joining us today! We’ve heard you have quite a lot planned for Earth Day this year – can you tell us how you came to team up with Gumtree and its Consumption Rebellion movement?

Of course! I’ve always been quite loud about second hand clothes and my love of them over the years, so when I was given the opportunity to work with Gumtree and help drive awareness of the effects of fast homewares on the environment, it felt like a great idea. Gumtree and I’s values are very much aligned, so it made a lot of sense to work on the campaign with them.

What is the Spring Secondhand Challenge?

Gumtree’s Spring Second Hand Challenge asks everyone to shop secondhand where they can for the next three months, to help us lower our consumption and reconsider our shopping habits. We are encouraging people to look at the way they consume, how they live and what they are actually buying. Gumtree’s data shows if every person swapped their homeware purchases from new to second hand for the next three months alone, an estimated 10.9 billion kilograms of carbon across the nation would be saved – that’s enough carbon for every one of us in the UK to enjoy hot showers for six months!

So the challenge is about thinking why before you buy new, and making more considered choices in the long run. It’s a really simple action and we can all do it.


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You’ve turned your focus from fashion to homeware on this occasion. Why the shift?

I moved into a new home last year and found myself wanting to continue to shop in the same way as I always do with clothes; I really want to invest in furniture that I cared about and that was filled with stories. Shopping second hand not only saves you money, it’s sustainable, better for the planet and helps reduce our carbon footprint without trying too hard. Plus there are so many cool items on Gumtree – it makes finding great homewares so easy!

We hear a lot about secondhand shopping when it comes to fashion, but significantly less when it comes to interiors. Why do you think that is? Is it still as important to shop secondhand when it comes to interiors?

Absolutely, it’s just as important, but I think people are less aware of what they can find in this space. Gumtree’s research found that 66 percent of Brits are aware of the impact of fast fashion on the planet but only 47 percent understand the negative impact of fast homewares, so there’s still a huge job to be done.

It’s still a relatively new concept to buy second hand furniture that isn’t antiques – even though they can be just as beautiful and special – but hopefully people’s opinions and behaviours around consumption will start to shift as we talk about it more and more.

Posters on wall on street

We’re a very trend-led society these days. How can we balance trendiness with mindful shopping?

I think it’s important for people to walk away from trends and to look internally at what inspires and excites them. Whether that be a top or a chair, shopping can be a really good opportunity to trust yourself with what you like and why.

Can you share some of your top tips for shopping on secondhand sites like Gumtree?

Rather than looking for things that will fit you or look good in your home, try and be guided by what you are drawn to by your gut. Think of shapes, prints, look at details and allow a little space for the magic to come in and something unexpected to find you.

Do you have any personal pledges for Earth Day?

To continue to look at the little things in my daily life to better my world and the planet I inhabit.

Miquita Oliver and other people stood with pickets for Earth Day 2023

Any parting words for our readers?

Join Gumtree’s Consumption Rebellion, think second hand first and save our planet.

Get Involved

Join the Consumption Rebellion at gumtree.com

Images courtesy of Gumtree