Data published by global market research Mintel shows that 24% of British men aged 16-34 bought a manbag in 2017, up +16% against the previous year’s figures. Its popularity is said to have grown significantly in recent years, with celebrities such as David Beckham, Kanye West and Ryan Gosling helping push the trend forward. The study also indicates that 40% of fashion accessory purchasers say they would be willing to pay more for ‘made in Britain’.

Sales of fashion accessories reached an estimated £2.9 billion (US$4.05 billion) in the UK in 2017. However, Mintel says the fashion accessories market is seeing slower growth as the slowdown in the luxury market impacts sales. “Handbag sales, which account for the largest share of the sector, have been hit by a trend for smaller and less expensive styles and a move towards mid-priced brands over luxury labels. Millennials are the main fashion accessories buyers and brands need to focus on attracting this growing new demographic of aspirational shoppers.”

Around 54% of British women bought a bag last year, with the handbag market now accounting for 50% of fashion accessory sales, outperforming all other fashion accessory categories. Over the past five years, sales of fashion accessories are reported to have increased +21% when the market was valued at £2.4 billion (US$3.35 billion) in 2012.

An estimated 52% of fashion accessories buyers make their purchases online, with Millennials aged 18-37 accounting for 59% of customers. Online-only retailers are the most popular places to buy fashion accessories online, with almost three-fifths (59%) of online shoppers buying from one of these websites.

The research was carried out among 2,000 internet users aged 16+ in October 2017.