Get the most out of your thrift store experience
By Jessica Berget, Staff Writer
I love thrifting. I’ve been buying clothes second-hand ever since I couldn’t afford to shop at retail stores. At this point, I rarely buy clothes regular price, and why would I? Buying clothes second-hand is cheaper and better for the environment, the clothes are actually better quality than at some retail stores, and sometimes you really luck out and find the perfect outfit. After thrifting for so many years, I’ve learned some helpful tricks to make your thrifting expeditions the best they can be.
Come prepared: Thrift stores can be overwhelming sometimes, and its super frustrating when you don’t know what you’re shopping for. Make a list of things you want and check those things first. It will keep you from having 20 different things to try on, and perhaps also stop you from buying those 20 things, saving money and time.
Dress light: Trying things on can be annoying at times, but when you’re thrifting you’re going to be doing a lot of it. Not wearing too many layers of clothes is helpful because sometimes you can just throw what you’re trying on over top of your clothes, making it easier and faster to figure out if it’s what you want. Plus, the people in the changing room line will appreciate it.
Always try it on: Some clothes may look your size but might not fit quite like you thought it would. Too many times I have bought something on a whim without trying it on, only to immediately regret it once I tried it on at home. This can become a serious waste of money. Trust me, try it on. Also, inspect your clothes before you buy them. There may be a stain or a rip in the clothing that you may not have noticed unless you really looked over it.
Take the price tags off: This is a trick I just recently learned. If you like a certain item but you’re iffy on the price of it, take the tag off and tell the cashier at the front you found it without a tag. Nine times out of ten, they will charge you less than what the original tag said. I advise only doing this in places with a high profit margin, like consignment stores or Value Village. Doing this in a charity-based thrift store is a lot harder to justify.
Don’t buy it if you don’t love it: It’s not hard to overspend in a thrift store. Five t-shirts for $10 seems like a great deal, but chances are you don’t need five t-shirts, nor will you love every single shirt. Be realistic about what you will actually wear and what looks good in the store. If you can imagine leaving the store without it, it’s probably best left on the rack.