Tips for Buying Clothing at Thrift Stores


There are all kinds of deals that abound when you walk into a thrift store. You can get great deals on books, home decor and of course, furniture. One of the best deals is clothing, though, and most Thrift Stores have an over-abundance of it. It may seem simple when it comes to purchasing clothes at a thrift store, but there are some special things to take into consideration when buying clothing second hand. Here are some tips for buying clothes from a 2nd hand store.


Tips for Buying Clothing at Thrift Stores


 Always try them on. Being that these clothes are used, they could be stretched out away from the original size due to wear of the previous owner. Just because something says a size 10 doesn’t mean it is. There is also a big difference between the vast brands available, so to make sure it fits, try it on.

Speaking of trying on, dress for that. When I go thrift shopping, I always wear easy to slip on and off clothes and shoes such as flip flips, tom’s and leggings and t-shirts. It makes trying on everything so much easier as I don’t have to mess with buckles, buttons or laces. Also, don’t wear your best stuff. Thrift stores are notoriously dusty and dirty.

Know the return policy. Some stores no longer allow for returns with cash back, and only extend store credit with receipts, and some do not allow returns at all. They often will only take things back with the tags still attached as well so make sure it will work before you start removing the tags.

Always wash everything your buy even if it looks clean. You don’t know if it was in a dusty attic or if (worst case scenario) the previous owner had a bed bug infestation. Clothing should be washed in hot water as soon as it is brought home to make sure it is free and clear.

Speaking of washing, make sure you check out the care instructions on tags. Many times, people disregard a garment because they don’t have the time ot money to dry clean it all the time. Don’t get stuck with a garment you can’t properly care for.

Another reason to try things on before you buy; you can see stains and holes easier than when it is hanging on the rack. I can[‘t count how many times I have missed a big hole, stain or rip in a shirt or pants until I was in the dressing room.

Know brands. Don’t get conned into paying full price or more for something that is from Walmart. It helps to know some names of designer brands so you can know if something is a good deal or not.

Shop in spots that aren’t your size. I am a size 2-3x. I have found that even in XL, there are pieces from some brands that fit me well. Check one or two sizes down from yours for great deals. Also, check in the men’s section for women’s jeans. Sometimes they get put there.


What tips do you have for shopping at thrift stores for clothing? I would love to hear your tips!

3 Replies to “Tips for Buying Clothing at Thrift Stores”

  1. First off, thrift stores usually have sales on certain days. My favorite thrift store has 60% off clothing and 50% off everything else every two weeks. On Holidays, they sale their clothes for .49 each. I would shop when there is a sale to save even more. I got a really nice pair of Capri’s for .99 cents on Saturday. I got my Dad two new pairs of shorts for Summer for .80 cents each. I love shopping at Thrift Stores.

  2. I can’t imagine someone would buy from a thrift store and not wash it first, but I bet it does happen. I agree with the other comment as well in regards to sales. Many thrift stores do have certain days when they blow everything out. Even the Goodwill in our area does that.

  3. I have found so many great things at the local thrift store! Sometimes I will be shopping for something and can’t find it, and then — lo and behold — I find it at the thrift shop! Love that place.

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