People opt to shop at thrift stores for many different reasons; for some, it’s an inexpensive way to find unique pieces that no one else has; for others, it’s an easy way to reduce their carbon footprint. Before we get too into this, let’s go over a few reasons thrifting is a great idea:
- Save some cash. Seriously, you can’t beat thrift store prices, and many thrift stores, especially local ones, are non-profits, so every penny you spend goes to someone in need in the community.
- You can score quality things. Let’s face it, we’ve all bought clothes that have sat in our closets, and after months and months of not wearing them, not even cutting the price tag off, we’ve finally parted ways. Many of these clothes end up in thrift stores, so if you’re a brand shopper or like to score a good deal, hit up thrift stores.
- Picture it: you’re on vacation, and you know you have a free afternoon coming up. You probably want to spend that time lounging by the pool. But, what if you completely forgot your swimsuit! No worries, you can snag a super cheap one at a thrift store, and you may even luck out and get your hands on a cool vintage one!
Now, there are a million reasons why you should give your local thrift stores a chance, but before you go, especially if you’re new to this, there are a few do’s and don’ts, or “thrift this, not that” rules, if you will. So without further ado, let’s get into this thrifting guide!
NOT to thrift: anything damaged or stained. Yeah, yeah, yeah, this should go without saying. Still, sometimes pieces are so good that you think, “all I need to do is wash it” or “I can handle sewing a few buttons on.” Still, sometimes these seemingly remedial tasks turn out to be so much more work. Even if you’re only out a few bucks, that’s a few bucks that you could have spent elsewhere. So, unless you love a piece and know with 100% certainty that a quick wash is all it needs, then opt out and look for something else. That’s the beauty of a thrift store, inventory is ever-changing, so there will always be new (to you) unique pieces to check out.
TO thrift: jeans. Thrift stores have the best jeans. There. We said it. Honestly, our favorite part is that often jeans are already broken in, and what’s better than jeans that just fit? Whether you prefer to go for worn-in, destructed jeans or you’re a brand shopper; you can usually find exactly what you’re looking for at a thrift store. Before you buy, please give them a once-over and be sure to investigate the inner thigh and crotch area because this is where jeans tend to fade the most. The last thing you want is your jeans to last only a couple wears!
- NOT to thrift: underwear.Again, we can see where some super cheap undies may be tempting. Unless underwear is IN the UNOPENED package, we don’t recommend second-hand underwear for obvious reasons. The same can be said in regards to bras and socks, as well.
- TO thrift: closet organization.You can find endless amounts of baskets and trays at thrift stores for pennies, which are great for keeping your closet and home super organized. And there’s no doubt you’ll save a ton of money buying these pieces second hand versus heading to your local Target.
- NOT to thrift: cosmetics.Using someone else’s makeup can cause skin irritation and lead to spreading harmful bacteria, so say no. Even if you spot some unopened cosmetics, there’s no way of knowing when a person initially bought it, which means there’s no way of knowing when it expires. Makeup can be pricey, and we get that, but drugstore makeup is cleaner than thrift store makeup.
- TO thrift: vintage.If you are an avid vintage garment seeker, definitely check out your local thrift stores and do so with the intent of going through every rack because you never know where a piece may be hiding. Some thrift stores see the value in vintage clothing, while others don’t, and as a result, prices vary depending on the store. As with anything, make sure you’re ready to take on the responsibility you may have regarding vintage garments, whether it be a broken zipper or ripped lining.