Sustainability and Social Responsibility

The Roles of Social Acceptance and Sustainable Identity on Young Consumers’ Aesthetic Judgments and Behavioral Responses Towards Transformable Dress

Authors
  • Addie K Martindale (Georgia Southern University)
  • Christin Seifert (Georgia Southern University)
  • Young-A Lee orcid logo (Auburn University)

Abstract

Consumers’ perceptions towards sustainable clothing can be conditioned by their social interaction and sustainable identity. No prior research has examined consumers’ social and personal motives on one type of sustainable clothing, here transformable dress. Thus, using transformable dress as the study stimuli, the purpose of this study is to: (a) examine the impact of consumers’ need for social acceptance and sustainable identity on their aesthetic judgment, sustainable clothing behavior, and purchase intention; and (b) investigate whether the combined influence of these two variables can lead to a change in the above judgments and behavioral responses. An online survey was conducted with a nationwide sample of 287 female consumers. Results revealed that consumers with a high need for social acceptance and a high sustainable identity have higher aesthetic judgments and purchase intention towards transformable dress, and more sustainable clothing behavior. Furthermore, consumers who have either a low or high sustainable identity with a high need for social acceptance demonstrate more positive sustainable clothing behavior than those with a low need for social acceptance. This study shows that social proof as a form of social validation of acceptable products is a powerful guide to sustainable clothing behavior even when people’s own identity is less sustainable. Marketers are encouraged to implement social proof in their marketing strategy through normative information and create momentum towards sustainable products such as transformable clothing.

Keywords: sustainable identity, social acceptance, transformable dress

How to Cite:

Martindale, A. K., Seifert, C. & Lee, Y., (2019) “The Roles of Social Acceptance and Sustainable Identity on Young Consumers’ Aesthetic Judgments and Behavioral Responses Towards Transformable Dress”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 76(1). doi: https://doi.org/10.31274/itaa.8428

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Published on
15 Dec 2019