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UK Childrenswear market report

"The growing tween and teen population presents opportunities for the sector, particularly for retailers that offer the latest trends in age-appropriate styles because over half of children aged 10-14 want their clothes to be fashionable. Young fashion retailers are in a good position to target this demographic with specific teen collections as these social media-savvy digital natives are influenced by the same fashion images as older teens."

- Tamara Sender, Senior Fashion Analyst

This report is looking at the following areas:

  • How has the childrenswear market been performing?
  • What are the opportunities for growth in the sector?
  • How can retailers cater to the growing young teen clothing market?

Shoppers are most interested in clothes that use innovative fabrics when buying childrenswear. As part of the athleisure trend, children's clothes styles are becoming more casual and sporty, with retailers and brands using new fabrics that allow them to look good while also being functional and comfortable.

The market size for childrenswear incorporates all clothing for children aged 0-14 years, including schoolwear. Baby and infantswear relates specifically to clothing for children up to the age of 4 and includes bibs, but excludes nappies and disposable nappies.

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Products covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • Childrenswear to grow by 1% in 2016
              • Figure 1: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK value sales of childrenswear, 2011-21
            • Falling birth rate
              • Figure 2: Total number of live births in the UK, 2005-15
            • Companies, brands and innovation
              • Supermarkets expand kidswear ranges
                • New entrants into the childrenswear market
                  • Adspend on childrenswear rises 18%
                    • The consumer
                      • Supermarkets lead for childrenswear
                        • Figure 3: Retailers from which children’s and/or baby clothing was purchased in-store or online in the last 12 months, September 2016
                      • Three fifths buy childrenswear as a gift
                        • Figure 4: Who childrenswear or babywear has been purchased for, September 2016
                      • Older shoppers want childrenswear made in Britain
                        • Figure 5: What consumers would like to see improved at their preferred childrenswear retailer, September 2016
                      • Most interest in innovative fabrics
                        • Figure 6: Interest in innovations when buying babywear and childrenswear, September 2016
                      • Supermarkets most popular for schoolwear
                        • Figure 7: Types of retailer schoolwear is purchased from, September 2016
                      • Mothers prioritise price of schoolwear
                        • Figure 8: Most important factors when buying schoolwear, September 2016
                      • Half of tweens and teens look for fashionable clothes
                        • Figure 9: What helps children decide what to buy when shopping for clothes, September 2016
                      • 64% like trying on clothes in a store
                        • Figure 10: Attitudes towards shopping for clothes, September 2016
                      • What we think
                      • Issues and Insights

                        • How has the childrenswear market been performing?
                          • The facts
                            • The implications
                              • What are the opportunities for growth in the sector?
                                • The facts
                                  • The implications
                                    • How can retailers cater to the growing young teen clothing market?
                                      • The facts
                                        • The implications
                                        • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                          • Childhood obesity
                                            • Tween and teens to grow 12%
                                              • Falling birth rate
                                                • Shopping is a popular pastime
                                                  • Social media use
                                                    • Childrenswear to grow by 1% in 2016
                                                      • Infantswear grows 22%
                                                        • Girlswear grows more than boyswear
                                                        • Market Drivers

                                                          • Tweens and teens to grow 12%
                                                            • Figure 11: Growth rate of the UK population, by age, 2011-16 and 2016-21
                                                          • Falling birth rate
                                                            • Figure 12: Total number of live births in the UK, 2005-15
                                                          • Average age of first-time mums rises to over 30 years old
                                                            • Figure 13: Trends in the mean age of mothers at birth of their first child, England and Wales, 2000-15
                                                          • Average household size falls
                                                            • Figure 14: UK households, by size, 2011-21
                                                          • Childhood obesity
                                                              • Figure 15: Overweight and obesity prevalence, by age, England, 2014
                                                            • What activities kids do
                                                              • Figure 16: Activities children do at the weekend, May 2016
                                                            • What pocket money is spent on
                                                              • Figure 17: How pocket money is spent, May 2016
                                                            • Social media use
                                                              • Figure 18: Social media use, May 2016
                                                          • Market Size and Forecast

                                                            • Childrenswear to grow by 1% in 2016
                                                              • Figure 19: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK value sales of childrenswear, 2011-21
                                                            • Childrenswear to increase 13% by 2021
                                                              • Figure 20: UK value sales of childrenswear, at current prices, 2011-21
                                                            • Segmentation
                                                              • Figure 21: UK value sales of childrenswear, by sector, 2011-16
                                                            • Forecast methodology
                                                              • The impact of the EU referendum vote
                                                                • Figure 22: Alternative market scenarios for the post-Brexit childrenswear market, at current prices, 2016-21
                                                                • Figure 23: Detailed post-Brexit scenarios for childrenswear market, at current prices, 2016-21
                                                              • Childrenswear is seeing slowing growth, but not as a result of Brexit
                                                                • Price rises could impact growth
                                                                  • Childrenswear hard hit in last downturn
                                                                  • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                                                    • Childrenswear accounts for a third of space
                                                                      • Mothercare collaborates with Julien Macdonald
                                                                        • Focus on new store concepts
                                                                          • Supermarkets expand babywear and kidswear ranges
                                                                            • New entrants into the childrenswear market
                                                                              • Adspend on childrenswear rises 18%
                                                                              • Channels to Market

                                                                                • Supermarkets continue to dominate
                                                                                  • Figure 24: UK sales of childrenswear, % share by outlet type, 2015
                                                                                • Clothing retailers
                                                                                  • Specialists
                                                                                    • Sports stores
                                                                                    • Space Allocation Summary

                                                                                      • Allocation by children, men and women
                                                                                          • Figure 25: Specialist and non-specialist clothing retailers’ estimated space allocation, by men’s, women’s and childrenswear, October 2016
                                                                                        • Space allocations: detailed estimates
                                                                                          • Figure 26: Supermarket chains’ detailed space allocations for childrenswear, October 2016
                                                                                          • Figure 27: Broad range clothing retailers’ detailed space allocations for childrenswear, October 2016
                                                                                          • Figure 28: Department stores and broad range clothing retailers’ detailed space allocations for childrenswear, October 2016
                                                                                      • Retail Product Mix

                                                                                          • Figure 29: Leading retailers of childrenswear, estimated sales mix, 2015/16
                                                                                          • Figure 30: Leading clothing retailers’ share of clothing sales, by product, 2015/16
                                                                                          • Figure 31: Leading retailers of childrenswear, estimated sales density, by children’s products, 2015/16
                                                                                      • Competitive Strategies

                                                                                          • Financial outlook
                                                                                            • Retail offering and brand positioning
                                                                                              • Digital activity
                                                                                                • New developments
                                                                                                • Launch Activity and Innovation

                                                                                                  • Supermarkets expand babywear and kidswear ranges
                                                                                                    • New entrants into the childrenswear market
                                                                                                      • Figure 32: BoohooKids Landing Page, October 2016
                                                                                                    • New store concepts
                                                                                                      • Collaborations
                                                                                                        • Figure 33: Ted Baker childrenswear at Debenhams, 2016
                                                                                                        • Figure 34: H&M childrenswear collaboration with WWF, 2016
                                                                                                      • Designer childrenswear ranges
                                                                                                      • Advertising and Marketing Activity

                                                                                                        • Adspend on childrenswear rises 18%
                                                                                                          • Figure 35: Main above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on childrenswear versus total clothing advertising, 2012-16
                                                                                                        • Supermarkets dominate adspend
                                                                                                          • Figure 36: Total above-the-line, online display and direct mail advertising expenditure on childrenswear, by top 20 advertisers of childrenswear, 2012-16
                                                                                                          • Figure 37: The top five advertisers of childrenswear, 2015
                                                                                                        • TV is main channel used
                                                                                                          • Figure 38: Advertising expenditure on childrenswear, by media type, 2015
                                                                                                        • Nielsen Ad Intel coverage
                                                                                                        • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                                                                          • Supermarkets lead for childrenswear
                                                                                                            • Primark grows in popularity
                                                                                                              • Three fifths buy childrenswear as a gift
                                                                                                                • Older shoppers want childrenswear made in Britain
                                                                                                                  • Shoppers interested in innovative fabrics
                                                                                                                    • Supermarkets most popular for schoolwear
                                                                                                                      • Mothers prioritise price of schoolwear
                                                                                                                        • Half of tweens and teens look for fashionable clothes
                                                                                                                          • 64% like trying on clothes in a store
                                                                                                                            • Online is part of shopping for 10-14s
                                                                                                                            • Where Childrenswear is Purchased

                                                                                                                              • Supermarkets lead for childrenswear
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 39: Retailers from which children’s and/or baby clothing was purchased in-store or online in the last 12 months, September 2016
                                                                                                                                • 27% buy online
                                                                                                                                    • Figure 40: Retailers from which children’s and/or baby clothing was purchased in the last 12 months, split by in-store and online, September 2016
                                                                                                                                  • Primark grows in popularity
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 41: Retailers from which children’s and/or baby clothing was purchased in-store or online in the last 12 months, 2015 and 2016
                                                                                                                                    • People buying for 6-12s stick to one retailer
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 42: Retailers from which children’s and/or baby clothing was purchased in-store or online in the last 12 months, split by in-store and online, September 2016
                                                                                                                                  • Who has Childrenswear Been Purchased for?

                                                                                                                                    • Three fifths buy childrenswear as a gift
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 43: Who childrenswear or babywear has been purchased for, September 2016
                                                                                                                                    • Purchasing peaks for kids aged 3-8
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 44: Who childrenswear or babywear has been purchased for, September 2016
                                                                                                                                    • Most parents shop with kids
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 45: Whether or not parents go shopping for childrenswear with their children, September 2016
                                                                                                                                  • Improvements Desired at Childrenswear Retailers

                                                                                                                                    • Older shoppers want childrenswear made in Britain
                                                                                                                                      • Figure 46: What consumers would like to see improved at their preferred childrenswear retailer, September 2016
                                                                                                                                    • Demand for gender-neutral clothing
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 47: What consumers would like to see improved at their preferred childrenswear retailer, crossed by who childrenswear has been bought for, September 2016
                                                                                                                                    • Interest in Innovations

                                                                                                                                      • Most interest in innovative fabrics
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 48: Interest in innovations when buying babywear and childrenswear, September 2016
                                                                                                                                      • Entertaining children
                                                                                                                                        • Personalised childrenswear
                                                                                                                                        • Where Schoolwear is Purchased

                                                                                                                                          • Supermarkets most popular for schoolwear
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 49: Types of retailer schoolwear is purchased from, September 2016
                                                                                                                                            • Loyal back-to-school shoppers
                                                                                                                                            • Most Important Factors when Buying Schoolwear

                                                                                                                                              • Mothers prioritise price of schoolwear
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 50: Most important factors when buying schoolwear, September 2016
                                                                                                                                              • Importance of fit
                                                                                                                                              • What Children Look for when Buying Clothes

                                                                                                                                                • Half of tweens and teens look for fashionable clothes
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 51: What helps children decide what to buy when shopping for clothes, September 2016
                                                                                                                                                • Importance of brands
                                                                                                                                                • Children’s Attitudes when Shopping for Clothes

                                                                                                                                                  • 64% like trying on clothes in a store
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 52: Attitudes towards shopping for clothes, September 2016
                                                                                                                                                  • Online is part of shopping for 10-14s
                                                                                                                                                  • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                                                                      • Abbreviations
                                                                                                                                                        • Consumer research methodology
                                                                                                                                                        • Appendix – Market Size and Forecast

                                                                                                                                                          • Forecast methodology
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 53: Best- and worst-case forecast of UK value sales of childrenswear, 2016-21