Thrifting is a great way to save money and the environment! You can find high quality or/ and name brand items at a low price all while saving the environment the energy needed to manufacture, produce, package and distribute the same product. Thrifting also helps landfills as some clothing materials take years to fully break down; by buying secondhand clothes, you reduce waste and help make the earth a little cleaner. However, it can be hard to find items that you want or are good, so here are a few tips on how to get good finds when thrift shopping!

1. Choose a good day

Thrifting is great since there are so many different items to choose from, but if someone takes something you want, it’s possible you won’t be able to find the same item. Therefore, choosing the right day to go thrift shopping is important. You can ask the employees when they restock so that you will know which day is best to go. This way, you will be able to get first pick on all the items. Another general tip for choosing a day is to go in the middle of the week. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are typically the day when everyone goes to shop, so by going in the middle of the week, you’ll avoid crowds and hopefully are able find something good. 

2. Go often

Going often is key when thrift shopping. Stores may add new items even if it is not their restock date. By visiting often you’ll be able to discover more items and create your own luck for finding good ones. And if you do go often…

3. Make friends with the employees 

Thrift store employees have more control over discounts compared to regular retail stores so being friends with the employees would not be a bad idea. They might be able to offer you more discounts, offer valuable information (such as when new merchandise comes in) and maybe even save items for you that fit your style.

4. Go with the right mindset 

Shopping with an open mind is essential when thrift shopping. If you go in looking to find something specific, you might be disappointed. Remember that with such a wide variety of items, you have no idea what you might find. Going with an open mind allows you to find items that you did not expect to find. 

5. Look through everything

Some people just look through certain racks and if they find nothing they like, they leave. But there are so many other racks that might have something you do like. Don’t be afraid to look at items you usually don’t shop for because you might just be to find something new. Look in different sections as well, such as the kids section if you’re small, as you might be able to find something in your size. Some people discard their unwanted items on random racks and their discarded item might be the perfect fit for you. 

Photo by Becca McHaffie on Unsplash 

6. Put everything in the cart 

Some clothes do not look that good on a hanger but when worn, can be flattering. So even if it looks just a little bit interesting, put it in the cart (Shop with an open mind).

7. Know your fabrics 

Knowing different fabrics can save you a lot of time when thrift shopping. You are able to quickly filter out any items with bad fabric saving you the time from having to look at each individual item. This is especially important if you are looking for high quality or vintage items as you’ll be able to tell which ones are truly a good find. 

Photo by Luis Montejo on Unsplash

8. Look for items you can repurpose

Thrift shopping is not always just for clothes. They sell other household items and furniture. For these items, be sure to think outside the box. Even if they might not seem like something you need, you may be able to repurpose it for something you do need. 

Reminder: Don’t buy just because it’s cheap

Only focusing on the price of items is dangerous because although the price is low, the amount of clothes can accumulate and you begin to buy items you do not need. Thrift shopping is a great way to get “new” clothes while helping the environment by ensuring that useable clothes do not end up in landfills. If you buy an item and never end up wearing it, you defeat the purpose of thrifting. When buying an item, ask yourself “Will I actually use/ wear this?” and if the answer is yes, then buy it. If not, then put it down; it’s better to not waste.  

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