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Scared to Shop!

Women over the age of 70 are ‘intimidated’ by the high street

More than a third (36%) of women over the age of 70 have stopped purchasing new clothes because they find the high street shopping experience ‘intimating'. 

These are the findings of a new research study carried out by classic fashion brand, The study of 1,014 women over the age of 70 reveals that more than half (52%) of women find store staff unwilling or clueless as to how to help them with advice or finding the right size. Almost half (47%) admit they refrain from using changing rooms because they feel uncomfortable or are worried about suffering potential indignity. 

A lack of choice from retailers in terms of attractive, yet comfortable styles and suitable proportional shape and lengths for their age group, was also given as the reason almost three quarters (73%) of women have stopped spending money on new clothes, with nearly two thirds (64%) saying the high street is too focused towards younger women. Meanwhile, one in ten (11%) said they find the high street experience daunting because they are physically less able.


The research goes on to show that clothes shopping is just as big a challenge when relatives are tasked with the buying responsibility on behalf of loved ones. Despite two thirds (68%) of women saying they wished relatives purchased clothes for themmore often, it appears those making the purchasing decisions are left bewildered of what to look for, in fear of getting it wrong. 


A separate survey of 500 members of the public revealed that, of those who said they had purchased clothing for an older relative before, almost three quarters (72%) found the process stressful and were unsure of what to look for. More than half (56%) said that they had got the wrong size, length or unsuitable style with a previous item. Over a third (34%) admit they struggled to find the time to purchase clothing for relatives or return unsuitable items (24%). 


Commenting on the survey findings, Carr & Westley’s Managing Director, Judy Gorringe says, 


“As women get older, our clothing needs change. Like it or not, we can’t shop in the same way or wear the same designs we grew up in. But that doesn’t mean we should just give up, we just need to find a greater balance of comfort and style. Unfortunately, many high street retailers get this wrong as their whole shopping experience is skewed towards younger generations.


As retailers, it’s our responsibility to make that shopping experience as comfortable and easy as possible for this market. We can do this by listening to customer feedback about design and then offering the right proportional sizes and lengths for the age group”.   

Have you felt intimidated by the high street? What do you do to overcome this? 

Let us know what you think and share your experiences with us and others. And for more health news, follow us on FacebookTwitterGoogle+, Instagram and YouTube

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