News 07.04.2020

Need to Know

Puma and Central Saint Martins explore sustainable threads, Pinterest provides inspiration for locked-down users, and US citizens battle with broadband.

Puma and CSM consider fashion’s waterless future

Day Zero by Puma and CSM explore future textile manufacturing for a more sustainable sportswear industry

UK – Puma is working with Central Saint Martins' BA Fashion students to explore future textile manufacturing for a more sustainable sportswear industry.

The collaboration has led to a garment collection entitled Day Zero – in reference to the day the planet runs out of water – while drawing attention to water shortages being experienced in Cape Town, South Africa. The range prioritises sustainable, waterless practices from materials to marketing, including a campaign featuring digitally rendered versions of its pieces. Visually, the collection also highlights South Africa’s drought, with phrases such as Water Runs Dry and No Habitat featured as decorative details on clothing, shoes and accessories.

By working with Central Saint Martins and its students for the project, Puma has been able to experiment with new technologies in textile production, implementing state-of-the-art dyeing methods and digital print techniques that reduce the standard chemical and water consumption needed for clothes manufacturing.

In light of the fashion industry’s existential questions about supply chain and overconsumption, brands are innovating to provide collections created from eco-friendly fabrics and embracing Immaterial Fashion to provide digital solutions.

Covid-19: Bleach brings home the salon experience

Digital Salon by Bleach, London Digital Salon by Bleach, London
Digital Salon by Bleach, London Digital Salon by Bleach, London

London – Bleach London has launched a virtual hair salon experience to help guide self-isolating consumers through at-home hair maintenance.

The digital salon provides tips for those no longer able to have professional hair treatments or touch-ups owing to Covid-19, creating an accessible and personalised service, as well as a sense of community. Dubbed the Hair Party series, Bleach’s initiative invites hair experts and celebrity clients to the Bleach Instagram page to share step-by-step guides on how to perfect at-home hair colour.

For customers seeking advice on specific hair needs such as dye damage and balayage, they can sign up for a virtual VIP hair party after buying products from Bleach. In addition to providing live content led by the salon brand’s in-house talent, it has also improved its website’s live-chat function to allow customers to gain advice on at-home hair maintenance before making a purchase.

With hair salons around the world closed during the Covid-19 pandemic, consumers are turning to their salon’s digital channels for products and professional advice for an at-home Colour Refresh.

Covid-19: Pinterest’s new tab gives isolation inspiration

Global – The Today Tab is a new function from Pinterest, launched after the platform experienced a surge in Covid-19 engagement.

Amid global lockdowns, Pinterest reports that searches for ‘stay at home kids activities’ jumped by 4,055% and ‘tips for working from home’ were up 1,411% in the two weeks ending 17 March. In response, it has fast-tracked the launch of its Today Tab, a new function that provides users with daily inspiration. This will include curated topics and trending pins, as well as official content from the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control to stay well during the Covid-19 outbreak.

The Today Tab was already planned as part of an update for the platform, but was launched earlier in response to surging engagement. In fact, Pinterest reports that searches were up nearly 60% year on year in March, with new sign-ups, click-throughs on links up by about 30% in the week ending 29 March.

As consumers continue to adapt to life in lockdown, they are seeking opportunities for learning and development around home-based activities – whether through digital spaces like Pinterest or analogue DIY and lifestyle books.

Today Tab by Pinterest

Stat: The global pandemic hits US internet speeds

According to a report by BroadbandNow.com, 117 out of 200 – or 59% – of US cities surveyed by the broadband provider database recorded some level of network degradation in the week ending 28 March.

According to the report, this is due to the Covid-19 lockdown, and the rise in people working and entertaining themselves online at home. Comparing data with the first 10 weeks of the year before widespread isolation, figures show that rural download speeds around the US fell 3.1% in the last week of March, while rural upload speeds were down 6.9%. Overall, 144 (72%) of US cities surveyed experienced degradation in upload speeds, with three recording falls in range of greater than 40%.

With global employees beginning to adapt to a new normal of remote working during the global pandemic, internet providers – as well as online retailers and digital platforms – are facing pressure to meet connectivity and quality demands.

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