Now that the shops are opening back up again, many of us sustainable fashion lovers cannot wait to get back to what we know best – thrift shopping.
I wanted to share my best tips for getting back into the charity shops and how to get the most out of the experience:
Number 1 – Don’t Just Buy Things For The Sake Of It.
This rings so true for me, especially in 2019 when I was filling the void of no longer buying fast fashion with hauling a load of second-hand clothes. What’s worse, is that a lot of those clothes I didn’t even like that much. Today, I take my time and am much more considerate. I no longer have clothes coming out of my ear holes and that feels great!
Number 2 – Figure Out Your Style.
This is definitely not compulsory, but it has helped me to rein in my spending. Recently I’ve realised the importance of getting to know what shapes and styles of clothes I like best. There’s a difference between clothing you like, and clothing you like and wear! This balance of liking and wearing can help you realize your personal style. Now I have a wardrobe full of things I actually wear – what a concept!
Number 3 – Take a Snack, Water and Wear Comfy Shoes.
Three very minor points, but important nonetheless. Whenever I go charity shopping, it’s usually on a day off, so I like to make the most of it. Instead of taking snacks with you, you could always grab a coffee at your local café. For my Gen Z-ers: don’t forget your tote and to shoot a Tik Tok of your day.
Number 4 – Plan your Route.
This could take all of 2 seconds if where you plan to go charity shopping is smaller town. However, if you live in a city, it might be a fine idea to map out where you are going to go first, second, and third, just so you aren’t having to backtrack.
Number 5 – Be Open-Minded.
This is a very self-explanatory point but one I always like to make. Think about the outfits you’ve loved and pinned on your Pinterest boards, and think about how you can recreate that look sustainably.
Number 6 – Take a List.
This is great for keeping spending in check. I’ve gone charity shopping many times and not had a clue where to start or what I’m looking for. Without a list I always find the experience isn’t as satisfying because I either buy nothing or just a load of random bits I’ll wear once and never again. It’s good to think about what is really missing from your wardrobe.
Number 7 – Prioritise Comfort.
I really cannot stress this enough. Although Covid-19 has made it more difficult to be able to try on outfits in thrift shops, I still feel that you can gauge whether something will be comfortable or not. Some questions to ask yourself include: Is it an itchy fabric? Will this top keep riding up? Will those trousers keep falling down? Etc!
Number 8 – Decide Whether You Want to Go on Your Own or With Others.
Right, no offence to my friends, mums, brothers, sisters, dads, but I can’t help the fact I LOVE charity shopping on my own. It’s great because you can go at your own pace and really take your time on deciding what you actually like. Charity shopping with friends is also fun as you can advise each other and have a laugh. If you need a specific set of things, I recommend taking a list and going solo, but if you fancy a mosey, get a group of your friends together and make a day of it!
I hope these tips are helpful in planning your next trip. Remember, if you aren’t sure about the item, it’s best to leave it where it is. The items I wear the most are the ones I was sure about from the beginning.