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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at CWU chapter.

As fashion trends mimic the past, thrift stores are some of the most-shopped clothing stores by nearly every demographic. Not only are they affordable and very sustainable, but thrifting also provides a consumer experience unique to its own. You never know what you could find, and chances are, there won’t be anything else like it in the store. I know personally that a good portion of my closet is thrifted, including some of my favorite pieces. As a seasoned pro at sifting shelves and racks, I’ve laid out some tips to help you get the most out of your thrift.  

Bring A Belt 

You never know what sort of bottoms you are to encounter, so bringing a belt can help you make the decision on a larger waist pant before you get home and have them not look how you anticipated. 

The Lingerie Section

Ladies, we all know a good silky dress is in right now, so ditch the hundred-dollar labels and head on over to your local thrift stores lingerie section. Not only can vintage shift dresses/nightgowns be dressed up or down, but they are also great to layer in the winter with sweaters and tights. An additional bonus is that they are usually on the cheaper side as well, as I have found 3 for under $5 each.  

The Men’s Section in General 

Thick, cozy flannels, giant band tees, Levi’s 501s, the list goes on and on when it comes to a treasure trove such as the men’s section. For my personal style, I love oversized, worn pieces and just tend to like the selections in the men’s as opposed to the women’s typically. I’ve scored pretty big in the past with a pair of army cargo pants with my exact waist, a vintage Grateful Dead tour shirt, and a beautiful wool overcoat, just to name a few. 

A Good Crop 

Ah, the art of The Crop ™, I am a die-hard fan of this technique and in the aforementioned men’s section snippet this comes quite in handy. Find a cute crewneck but it’s far too baggy? Crop it. A t-shirt that’s only cute on the top? Crop it. Any shirt, in general, you want to make a little cuter and a little less frumpy? CROP. IT. Crop tops till I die and that’s that.  

A Neutral Uniform 

When going thrifting, not only should you pay attention to the clothes that you’re going to buy, but also the clothes you wear when you go. Trying on clothes, especially at the thrift store, is very helpful before you buy it. Obviously, you never know what it will really look like until it’s on, so be sure to try everything on first. This is where the neutral clothing comes in, wear pieces you know go with pretty much anything, as to give you the best idea of how the new clothes will fit in your wardrobe.  

These are just my tips and tricks for a successful thrifting experience. And for a sustainable activity that not only is fun for everyone, also ups your wardrobe game, and I recommend it to the utmost extent! 



Lauren Miller is a sophomore at Central Washington University majoring in Apparel, Textiles, and Merchandizing. She enjoys Mac Miller, grapefruits, and acrylic nails. Her goal is to eventually study at Parsons School of Design in New York, and one day, be a designer at fashion weeks all over the world.