Continuous Product Innovations and Changing Lifestyles Drive Gains in the Global Hosiery Market

The global market for Hosiery (Women and Men) is projected to reach US$31.6 billion by 2024, driven by continuous product innovations in functional features and aesthetics, expanding consumer base, and favorable demographic and economic trends in developing countries.

Hosiery refers to knitted garments particularly worn on legs and feet. Hosiery is a regular purchase for a large percentage of consumers, especially in the developed countries. The category also enjoys year-round demand as there is no seasonality. The market continues to gain from innovations in functional features and aesthetics led by increasing focus on quality, style, comfort, durability and fashion among consumers. While women dominate as the largest users of hosiery, segments such as tights are gradually gaining acceptance in the men's wear market, thus expanding the consumer base. Demand for hosiery products for older and plus-size consumer categories is also expected to witness sturdy growth encouraged by rapidly aging population and increased incidence of obesity worldwide. Increased penetration of online channel also augurs well for the market growth.

Similar to several other consumer products, hosiery is also driven by the innovation aspects focused on styling and comfort features. Anti-cellulite tights, moisturizing pantyhose, Capri-style tights, footless tights and low-rise hosiery are some innovations that saw light in recent years. In terms of design evolution, usage of colors and patterns remain the dominant trend. As consumer demand for highly comfortable hosiery intensifies, yarns are also showing continued improvement on this count. Innovative products with enhanced comfort, shaping, fit, and more importantly, at affordable pricing continue to witness high success rate in the market and the trend is likely to continue in future. Run-resistant technology that prevents runs in hosiery products is being adopted by several manufacturers. Technology advances such as support tights ensuring optimal blood circulation, control tops lifting tummies without narrowing, ergonomic hosiery with weather-adaptive and related supportive features, and silver-based microbial finishes preventing microbial growth are some areas that are gaining attention among manufacturers.

Europe represents the largest market worldwide, followed by the United States. Asia-Pacific ranks as the fastest growing market with volume sales projected to grow at a CAGR of 5.1% over the analysis period. The market holds immense untapped potential for growth mainly because of low product penetration, rising standards of living, a large population base and the rapid urbanization trend. Other factors contributing to growth include rising disposable income levels, aggressive retail marketing, growing fitness consciousness and expanding base of affluent base of middle class population.

Major players in the market include CSP International SpA, Golden Lady SpA, Kayser-Roth Corporation, Gildan Activewear Inc., Gold Toe-Moretz, LLC, Hanesbrands, Inc., Iconix Brand Group, Inc., L Brands, LVMH, Donna Karan International, Sculptz, Inc., Trere Innovation s.r.l., and Wolford AG, among others.

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