The Ultimate Guide to Thrifting

You know the feeling: you go to a thrift store hoping to find a bunch of hidden gems, but instead, you end up leaving empty-handed. Using the tips below, you’ll be sure to find something the next time you go thrift shopping.

1. Be Patient

Don’t be discouraged if you don’t find everything you want right away! Like most things, thrifting takes practice and can seem overwhelming at first. I recommend being patient and going through every single item on the racks. While this may seem cumbersome, chances are that you’ll stumble across something that catches your eye that will be worth all the searching!

2. Keep an Open Mind

If you see something that may not be your style, go ahead and try it on anyway because it may surprise you! You can also see if you can find a way to incorporate it into an outfit you already own.

3. Go to The Men’s Section

Be sure to visit the men’s section— most of my favorite clothing items I have gotten thrifting are from here. Typically, you should look at a smaller size than what you normally wear in women’s. Look for boyfriend jeans, oversized sweaters and sweater vests, oversized t-shirts, and button-downs! I’ve even gotten comfy sweatpants for when I want to dress down.

4. Get Items for Layering

You can never go wrong with a classic blazer or a jean jacket to complete any outfit. When looking for outerwear, you may even find business wear that may prove to be useful in the future. However, make sure to leave winter jackets for those who may genuinely need them.

5. Go to a Location in a Bigger City

Be open to traveling to locations in urban areas! Since there are usually more people that live in the area, this means the store will have more in stock compared to those in rural areas. The clothing stores have in cities is also usually more up to date on the current fashion trends.

6. Inspect the Items

At a first glance, you may love something that you picked out; however, it is important to inspect your clothing for any signs of wear and stains. Most commonly, stains can be found on the sleeves, near the shirt collar, or in the armpit region. If a shirt is missing a button, remember you can most likely fix it yourself!

7. Remember the Accessories

One of the most overlooked sections in thrift stores is the ones with accessories along with the jewelry counter. Stay on the lookout for unique jewelry, belts, hats, and purses!

8. Don’t Buy Something Just Because It Is Cheap

I know it may be tempting to buy a shirt because it’s only $4, but if it is going to sit in the back of your closet, then it’s definitely not worth buying. Stick to what you know you’ll wear and incorporate in your outfits.

9. Reverse Searching

If you find something you really like, look at the brand on the tag and search the store! I have found many articles of clothing from the same brand that I ordered online.

10. Don’t Take It Too Seriously

Most importantly, remember thrifting should be fun! Even the most experienced thrifters have trouble finding things, too. There is always the option to visit a store nearby or come back later in the week.