Thrift Shopping

Thrift shopping was such a trend that it was embarrassing of me to not even dive in until now. 20 and penniless, I decided to search up the nearest Goodwill store in town and went thrift shopping for the first time with my friend. It was the greatest feeling ever.

I don’t know how people can spend so much money on good-looking clothes. Well, now I know. THEY DON’T. So that was the ultimate secret to shopping!

Yes, there are people who don’t thrift shop – like the pre-college me  (look at how much time and money I wasted from all those years). To be honest, though, my mom never approved of us going to a Goodwill to shop. In her word, “it wasn’t safe and it wasn’t sanitary.” To her, it was a place where we donated our clothes, not buy them.

Then, how did I get into it? Well, I joined the only fashion-related club on my college campus. Every end of the school year, we would receive donations from graduating seniors – usually, clothes and accessories but they can also donate appliances, room decorations, and etcetera – and hold sales for them. What’s even better is that we donate most of our profits to a local charity! Who knew that fashion could encourage environmental sustainability and relief to the poor?

While holding our sales events, I became fascinated at the bundles of clothes that were being sold. As I checked them out, I would think to myself, “How could anyone have given this fine piece away? Were they nuts?” A good number of these clothes were in good to almost new conditions! That was also the time when I started checking out the boxes and emptying my wallet little by little…

One woman’s trash is another woman’s treasure, they always say.

I am still experimenting, trying to find my own style but if it hadn’t been for my club experience, I probably wouldn’t have been as enthusiastic about thrift shopping. My original perception about it was that there was not going to be a single item that would please me, in both quality and style.  I was wrong. Girl, there were so many pieces of clothing that I wished I had the pocket money for the first time when I went thrift shopping! In other words, do not let your inexperienced judgements get in the way of the true facts.

Thrift shopping is really all about being a smart shopper. You have to know how to look for clothes that are comfortable for you. If a piece of clothing looks shady to you, then don’t pick it up. It’s simple.

Sometimes, looking for the right pieces can be a challenge, especially if you’re someone who doesn’t try your clothes before washing them at home. If you’re uncomfortable trying clothes out at stores – especially at a secondhand store, I’d suggest using the clothes you already wear as references. Yes, if that means taking them off in a dressing room and bringing them to what you’re considering to buy, go ahead. Getting a second opinion from someone who has a sharp eye is helpful as well.

Other than that, my only advice is to know your body. No one knows it better than you do. Take advantage of this by experimenting with clothes from home. It almost sounds like you’re preparing a test, huh? A How Well You Know Which Pieces Fit Best for Your Body Test that is…

In conclusion, thrift shopping can be fun, safe, and a huge money saver. Your wallet will thank you after one trip. Just remember to wash your clothes after you buy them!

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