To find out what’s making Britain tick right now, you can forget the red-boxed Budget speech and ignore the loudest voices at the Edinburgh Fringe. What you need is John Lewis’s annual consumer report Shop, Live, Look.
Behind the duvet sales and sweater trends is a coruscating autopsy of the national mood. YOU got exclusive access to the latest findings…
Any make-up, as long as it’s brown
The viral ‘latte make-up’ trend on TikTok pushed sales of Dior Amber Neutrals Palette up 101 per cent on last year. It’s enough to make you blanch – luckily, no one will notice.
The viral ‘latte make-up’ trend on TikTok pushed sales of Dior Amber Neutrals Palette up 101 per cent on last year
Half-zips are hot
In fact, in the past 12 months, they’ve outsold pullovers by 62 per cent. Have our heads got bigger? No, this is a Succession stealth-wealth thing.
Continuing our love of all that’s worn by the Roy family, tailoring is up 70 per cent on last year – and remember the ‘ludicrously capacious’ bag lampooned by Tom Wambsgans in the final series? Searches for those are up 20 per cent too, although ‘large’ seems to be covering it online.
The John Lewis Mushroom Lamp has become a huge hit
‘Can’t anyone in this house use light switches?’
Said fewer people in 2023, as the rechargeable, portable LED Mushroom Lamp became a huge hit. Spiritual gurus have long held that you carry your light with you; now you actually can.
Are you double-screening?
Yes, you are! Peak time for online shopping at John Lewis is now 8pm-10pm. Maybe while you’re watching Peaky Blinders on iPlayer and wishing you’d held off on that flat cap because, really, fedoras are so much nicer (see top right).
What happens 18 times an hour at John Lewis?
Give up? An air fryer is sold! Meaning the gadget is in its third year of unbroken growth. Some people said they were a flash in the pan. Looks like that opinion is toast.
Primetime power: Online purchases peak between 8pm and 10pm, according to the John Lewis annual report
Never underestimate the power of the tourdrobe
When Beyoncé toured the UK in the spring she went big on cowboy boots, pushing up searches by 128 per cent year on year.
The Cowboy Boot rides again: Riley Keough in Daisy Jones & The Six. Beyoncé’s UK tour in the spring also drove sales of cowboy boots
Meanwhile, a fictional music star, Daisy Jones – played by Riley Keough in the Amazon series Daisy Jones & The Six, which dropped in March – also boosted the cowboy trend, lifting searches for flared jeans (43 per cent), denim shorts (80 per cent) and maxi skirts (62 per cent).
Enormo-furniture is huge
Sales of sofas with five or more seats have jumped 36 per cent, and the bestseller of the past 12 months was the lozenge: a supersized statement corner sofa.
The Lozenge Sofa: Big right now. Sales of sofas with five or more seats have jumped 36 per cent
Rugs, meanwhile, are more like unmoored carpets, with sales of those costing more than £1,000 up 61 per cent.
Samsung’s Freestyle projector sales are up 50 per cent against last year
After a hard day’s shopping, we love to unwind at the Everywhere cinema
Samsung’s Freestyle projector sales are up 50 per cent against last year. You’ll soon be able to beam Barbie all over your house. And your garden. Maybe even next door’s, too.
Stick that in your hand luggage!
Sales of 30ml-50ml bottles have dropped seven per cent compared with last year, but bottles sized 100ml to 200ml are up 11 per cent. We can’t wait to flash those when the restrictions at airport security change next year.
We’re watching our bottom lines
…not only on energy bills (as we reduce oven use, microwave cooking products are up 41 per cent) but also on, well, bottoms. Sales of Spanx are up 44 per cent on last year (letting it all hang out at weddings is fine, until you see the photos).
And we’re also digging trenches
Having held sway for several years, the comfortable (but rarely flattering) puffer jacket seems to have had its day, with sales of trench coats and formal shapes up 31 per cent on last year.
Cillian Murphy traded flat cap for fedora to play J Robert Oppenheimer
We adore a fedora
This is an Oppenheimer thing – outselling flat caps (move over, Peaky Blinders) by 21 per cent during July. Meanwhile the Barbie effect has pushed searches for the pink Arizona Birkenstocks up 67 per cent. Pink fedoras, however, are not a thing. Probably best.
Are you holding a folding?
No? Well, you should be, because this has been the year of the foldable phone. Samsung’s two models – the Z Fold and the Z Flip – launched the trend for phones that can collapse in half. Good job too, because nothing will spoil the line of your new trench like a bulky mobile.
Samsung’s two models – the Z Fold and the Z Flip – launched the trend for phones that can collapse in half
Every day is a duvet day
…when you’ve got the heating off. John Lewis’s Anyday extra-warm 15 tog duvet sold twice as many as expected. Speaking of doubling up, lots of people are joining a 9 tog and a 4 tog to make a ‘duvet sandwich’. Toastie.