Thrifting Tips and Tricks

Insider information to make thrifting more rewarding

Mikayla Coleman | Managing Editor

Thrifting is a great way to expand one’s wardrobe or space on a college student budget. Use these thrifting insider tips and tricks during the next trip to the thrift store. 

Forget sizes. With the sheer amount of different clothing accumulated in any given thrift store, there is going to be a huge variety of sizes. Obviously, it’s good to have an idea of what is too big and too small for oneself, but don’t focus on specific numbers or common lettering sizes. Sizing varies greatly depending on different brands, materials and styles — even for the numbered ones that are supposed to be exact inches. Getting hung up on these labels can cause people to neglect great pieces that might not be organized correctly. 

Know what to avoid. Buying something that has flaws is not always a bad thing. Pieces that have small holes or rips can easily be hand sewn together and made good as new. Stains, however, are almost always a losing game; there are some stains that just will not come out. Severity, size and substance are the three components to consider when a piece in a thrift store has a stain. I have had my fair share of paint-spotted clothing that I have continued to love and wear for several years. But if it’s oil, it’s going to be a journey to try to get the spot out — one with no certain ending. It may be better to save money for a different garment. 

Identify what is worth it. In recent years, prices at thrift stores have inflated substantially due to the rising popularity of thrifting for the middle class and resellers. When intaking donations, thrift store employees may increase the price of items if it has a recognizable brand. If one feels that a particular item is priced too high, most thrift stores have a specific discount day or a way to identify when certain products will go on sale. Playing the long game can be beneficial for the wallet, but don’t count on the piece staying there forever.

Happy thrifting!

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