thrift shopping

Slow down, tiger. Take a deep breath in and release. While all thrift stores may resemble the local Marshalls or TJMaxx, it has a lot of hidden treasures that have yet to be found. Sure, your friends may be headed to the mall in search of the latest trend, but its your job as an individualistic shopper to dig out the gold mines for styles that are sure to stand the test of time. However, as a newbie, please be aware that this could be your best experience yet or traumatizing. Not understanding the laws of the land can have you surrendering in defeat, but have no fear. Check out these easy ways to not ruin your shopping experience in hopes to secure a brighter future as a thrifter. (Thank us later)

Thrift or Vintage Shopping?

Many people have no clue that there is a difference between thrift and vintage shopping. Both are recycled second hand items of quality, but vintage items are usually of a higher quality. When thrifting, there is a greater chance of finding items items that are popular in the present moment. This isn’t normally the case when vintage shopping. You can expect to dig a little deeper in your pockets for high fashion brands and timeless pieces. Louis Vuitton, Gucci and and Chanel are just a few names you will generally run across. Keeping this in mind, make sure your budget reflects the items you’re looking to purchase.

Fail to plan….Plan to fail

Entering a thrift environment is a totally different ballgame than the typical Forever21. There are a ton of different fashions to chose from all from various centuries and eras, so it it’s very important to walk through the door with a plan. Ask yourself a few questions. What am I looking for? Is this for a particular event? Is it typically worn by men or women? (Yes, we do snag a few epic blazers from the mens section!) How much am I looking to spend today? These questions will make your shopping experience ten times smoother and you will leave feeling accomplished because you planned and executed!

Try it on!

Nothing is more painful than making a purchase, getting home and you’re struggling to get it past your knees. No matter what the tag says, its important that you keep in mind that all measurements aren’t created equally, so its important to remember to take just a few moments try it on.

Avoid the crowds

When its time to shop, no one wants to feel like their in a maze of garments. If time permits, shoot for days when large numbers of shoppers are at bay. It’s really disheartening when circling back around for that sequin top that has now made it to the register without you. So, give yourself room to shop freely. It will make all the difference.

Shipment/ Discount day

Oh yes! Fresh clothes! Take it from us, you want to call ahead to enquire about shipment and discount days. Most thrift, vintage and consignment shops will fill you in on when their new shipments arrive so that you aren’t that person sorting through the left overs. Bummer! Also, places like the Goodwill have discount days. Some items may be 20-30 or even 50% off and who doesn’t love a bargain?

Skim the Floor

So you have a plan in mind, but its your first time entering a thrift store. No Sweat! Take a moment to look through each section and make a mental note to revisit that area when completing your list. This will make your visit easier and if you’re ever in a rush the next time, you’ll know exactly where to go.

Give yourself time

Unless you’re a regular or thrifty professional, you want to give yourself time to shop. Impulse buys can be awesome if its worth it (no, a $2500 Gucci belt isn’t worth it). Give yourself a minimum of an hour to sort through the racks. Quality is your ending goal and who wants to get home and say, “Why did I buy that again.” Thrifting should be fun, not rushed. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, check it out on another day for better result.

Transitioning into a vintage vixen can be difficult, but stick to these tips and you’ll be a pro in no time. Until then, what other tips could our newbies use? Let us know and we’ll post them.

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