The Three Ws of Thrifting

In one way or another, you’ve heard the term "thrifting" either by a friend, a classmate or on social media. Even if you haven't participated in thrifting, you've thought about it. Thrifting creates a solution when facing the problem of the capitalistic industry called fast fashion, the rapid production by mass-market retailers in rejoinder to the newest trends. You may or may not know this, but fashion is the second-most polluting industry in the world, surpassed only by petroleum. 

For a greener, more environmentally-conscious choice, here are the three Ws of thrifting:

  1. 1. What

    What is thrifting? Thrift shopping, or second-hand browsing, is to give items—such as clothing, home decor, and furniture, accessories, etc—a second life. Or as Andy Mcdonald from Huffpost described it, “it's the ultimate example of one person's trash [becoming] another person's treasure.” Thrifting was firstly viewed as an indicator of lacking money, and while some may choose to still look at it as such, you’re actually saving yourself a ton of money. 

    Thrifting itself is an art. It's a process that requires energy, focus and patience because almost everything will be one-of-a-kind and this can get very frustrating. 

  2. 2. Why

    As I mentioned, the fashion industry is the second-largest polluter in the world. Vogue’s Emily Farra wrote a piece criticizing the industry and giving us the raw facts about the impact it has on our planet and our environment. Do you know the number of new clothing items produced each year? 150,000,000,000. And roughly 2,500,000,000 pounds of used clothing ends up in landfills each year. Do you need a better reason to do a little second-hand browsing today?

    Besides, thrifting also allows you to explore new categories in fashion you might not be familiar with. Personally, since I started thrifting, I’ve been able to explore and expand my taste in fashion, making it more versatile and unique.

  3. 3. Where

    Wait, are you seriously thinking there aren’t any thrift stores near you? Enough excuses! There are currently more than 25,000 resale, consignment and not-for-profit resale shops in the United States, making it HIGHLY accessible to thrift and go bargain hunting. If you are a fellow knight, below you can find quality spots to thrift near UCF:

    - Andee’s

    - Avalon Exchange

    - Goodwill

    - Omg! Thrift

    - Once Loved, Again

    - Plato’s Closet

    - Style Encore

    - The list goes on!

I’m not saying you need to quit going to retailers immediately and never step in a shopping mall ever again. I understand how we, as a society, are set up and change requires time. But change also requires collaboration and participation. And because our planet is in rapid need of care, we need to stop acting and thinking as micros because every action we take represents so much on a macro scale. 

Images: Hero, 1, 2, 3