As Love Island embraces pre-loved clothing, is it really enough to change its fast fashion narrative?
Pay close attention, and you might notice something a little different about this year’s Love Island. While the show has often been associated with bodycon dresses, underboob swimwear and controversial fast fashion partnerships, this year’s series has taken that reality TV archetype and given it new perspective – via a shiny new collaboration with eBay, meaning the islanders’ clothing has been purchased second-hand or vintage on the platform.
The vision comes courtesy of fashion stylist Amy Bannerman, who has not only overhauled the Love Island wardrobe department from a sustainable standpoint, but a style one, too. There’s vintage Versace, Gucci florals and original Y2K Morgan de Toi all stashed away in the villa’s dressing rooms, for example, rather than the previously-preferred I Saw It First.
Amy wants each islander to express themselves with her curated selection of pre-loved items, she tells GLAMOUR. “I think it’s really, really nice that individualism is coming through and it’s something which in fashion in general, people are leaning into,” she says. “Wearing pre-loved is the best way to do that.”
We’ve seen the likes of Tasha rocking vintage Jean Paul Gautier, as well as fashion boy Dami in Issey Miyake, and both the guys and the girls embracing genderless dressing by raiding each other’s wardrobes – which is undeniably wonderful to see. The islanders have also made a case for repeat wearing, with a number of them returning to key pieces throughout the series so far.
And while Amy admits she wasn’t a Love Island viewer previously, she didn’t want to completely change the glamorous aesthetic of the show – but rather, champion the originators of the trends that the islanders are synonymous with.
“I know a lot of the girls like those bodycon looks, or brands they veer towards such as Shein or Oh Polly – so we’ve been looking at designers like Christopher Esber, who does lots of cutouts, and vintage Mark Fast, who obviously originated the whole tire fabric dress thing,” she says. “And Hervé Leger. One of the first things I bought for the show was a Christopher Kane X Browns dress, because it’s exactly what the Love Islanders wear, but it’s just a thousand times better. It’s so luxury and colourful.”
And of the Y2K trend that’s everywhere right now, Amy preferred to source original pieces from brands of that era. Prepare yourselves, millennials. “Instead of getting the new Y2K-inspired pieces you can go and buy now, I focused on Morgan de Toi, Bay Trading and Tammy Girl,” she says. “It was so much fun.”