Reckitt stain removal brand Vanish has put aside its image of domesticity to enlist some of Europe’s biggest gamers and streamers – who are not exactly known to even leave their rooms let alone wash their clothes – in an effort to expand its #ReWear message to encourage young adults to tackle clothing waste.
#ReSkinChallenge has signed up high-profile gamers including CaptainPuffy, ShivFPS, FreyzPlayz and fifakillvizualz – who combined boast more than 4.4 million Twitch subscribers.
The gamers, who are known for their consumption of the latest skins and in-game clothes – have uncharacteristically reverted to a basic, default skin for a whole week. They have also worn the same physical outfit on their streams for the duration of the challenge, starting conversations among their fans.
In online gaming, skins – mass-consumed visual effects or clothing that allows players to personalise their character in a purely aesthetic way – are a burgeoning virtual problem.
Just like in real life, these skins are at the mercy of the latest trends, typically becoming obsolete within a few months. As well as a financial cost to the player, typically between £5 and £50, these purchases have an environmental cost. Each discarded skin, rather than ending up in landfill like their physical counterpart, is instead stored in a highly energy intensive data centre.
The big reveal came at the end of last week, that it was Vanish behind the #ReSkinChallenge all along, with a message to gamers to rewear their clothes – both in-game, and in real life.
The gamers then set their communities a challenge to play wearing their very first, or default, skin – with Vanish donating £20 to Oxfam for each stream shared.
The activation, created by Havas London and Havas Play with PR from One Green Bean, was designed to tap into the engaged gaming/streaming community and highlight the growing problem of virtual ‘fast fashion’ and real world clothing waste. In the UK alone, it is claimed that 350,000 tonnes of clothing are thrown away each year.
Reckitt chief marketing and digital officer Cigdem Kurtulus said: “The environmental impact of our culture of extreme disposability is becoming just as prevalent in the virtual world as in real life – reinforcing the very behaviour that sees millions of perfectly good items of clothing thrown into landfill every year.
“At Vanish, our mission is to help clothes live longer – and the #ReSkinChallenge represents an innovative, playful way to land our #Rewear message, credibly, with new and engaged communities.”
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