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Style > Fashion

My Tips for Thrifting

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

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

Secondhand shopping has grown in popularity over the years. It can offer great finds at lower prices, unique pieces, and a sustainable alternative to shopping new. However, walking into a thrift store that is inundated with clothing that has been overstuffed on dozens of racks is nothing like the organized and color-coded experience of shopping in a store that sells new clothes. Often the trade-off of paying less is spending more time looking. Thrifting is not an in-and-out experience. However, as mentioned, buying your clothes secondhand can have great benefits for the planet and for your wallet. Thrifting is also a great way to develop your personal style! Here are some of my tips to have the best thrifting experience.

  1. Keep a list of items to look out for. It may take a while to find exactly what you want, which will make it all the more fulfilling when you finally do! Plus, you’ll be sure that it’s not an impulse purchase.
  2. If you can, look at everything on the racks! If you’re short on time, pick a few racks to focus on. Skimming can lead to great finds, but the best stuff might not even be visible, hiding between other pieces that your eyes naturally skip over. 
  3. Patience is key. This applies both to the time you spend in a thrift store on a given day, and how long it might take to find something specific that you’re looking for over a longer term. A thrift trip ending with a good haul needs to be at least a couple of hours long. 
  4. Be picky: just like traditional shopping, it can be easy to get caught up in the moment and end up with items that you feel unsure about once you get home. If something feels off that you can’t quite put your finger on, or if the price is too high, put it back! There’s plenty more where it came from. 
  5. “Thrift” online. While not technically thrifting, depending on who you ask, there are amazing resources these days to shop secondhand online with the same benefits as doing so in person, and the bonus of not having to do any of the meticulous searching yourself. Vinted is a great place to start for lower-range prices, while Depop, Mercari, eBay, and even Facebook Marketplace have a wide range of price points. TheRealReal and Vestiaire Collective are ideal for those willing to pay more for second-hand designer pieces. Of course, for all of these options, don’t forget to factor in shipping costs! But for people who don’t have easy access to physical thrift stores, these online marketplaces are an excellent way to shop!

Hopefully these tips will improve your thrifting experience or inspire you to start!

Inès Dupupet is the Editor-in-Chief at Lasell University's Her Campus chapter, overseeing the team of copy editors and keeping track of articles. As a junior at Lasell, studying fashion and history, she hopes to become an archivist or librarian. She loves to write, experiment with fashion, play cozy videogames, and spend time with her cat.