Chances are you’ve probably heard about people’s love of thrifting. It’s one of those activities that the mainstream media often novelizes and deems trendy. But there are many more reasons to fall in love with secondhand shopping than just getting to say, “I got it from a thrift store!”—and none of them have to do with following mainstream trends. Learn more about why you should start shopping secondhand here!
It’s Good for the Environment
We’ve talked quite a bit about how thrifting is good for the planet. This spurs a lot of people to stick with secondhand shopping rather than the alternative. One other aspect we want to delve into is how the fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world. Next to oil, the fashion industry ranks highly among some incredibly polluting industries in the world.
Think about throwaway culture and fast-fashion fads—you order an item, and by the time it gets to you, it may not even be in style anymore. According to Vogue, 150 billion garments are made each year, and 10% of the world’s total carbon footprint comes from the apparel industry. When you buy secondhand, you reduce those statistics.
You’ll Save Money
In the simplest sense, you’ll save a lot of money if you focus on secondhand shopping. Think about how much a new graphic T-shirt from Target costs - $15 to $20? You can find graphic tees at a thrift store for $3 or less! That’s a significant decrease in price. You’ll also find lower price tags for all sorts of clothing items, home goods, electronics, and more. Try thrifting when you feel the urge to go shopping and see how much money you’ll end up saving.
It’s Incredibly Sustainable
If you’re trying to live a more sustainable lifestyle, then secondhand shopping is a habit you need to develop. “Sustainable” is a word people throw around a lot when they’re striving to live with green choices at the forefront. The sooner we think about thrifting as a sustainable, lifelong choice rather than a hip generational trend, the better. It’s a practical consumer alternative that makes a positive impact on the environment and on your wallet.
Another key aspect of thrifting’s sustainability is that it has a very cyclical nature—once an item lands in a thrift store, someone buys it and wears it. When that person grows out of it, they can donate it again, and the item pops back into the thrift store. These sustainable choices tend to follow to various areas of life, leading to an expanded cycle of sustainability.
You Can Refine Your Personal Style
Many people struggle with refining their own personal style. This is often due to fast fashion. Sure, you can look to the media, influencers, and current trends to see how to build your personal style, but when your style shifts every time a different trend comes in, that’s not the most sustainable practice. Instead, you can consistently find unique pieces with thrifting. You’ll sort through such a variety of clothing that you’ll learn to key in on the pieces that are more you. You can experiment with new articles of clothing and define which styles and clothing items best fit your personality.
Cuts Down on Waste
As we’ve mentioned, one of the big reasons people choose to shop secondhand is because of the influence it has on the environment. The fashion industry is a huge culprit of emissions, and the apparel industry is a massive player in the world of waste. When people donate their garments rather than toss them in the garbage, they’re doing their part to cut down on waste. When you go to the thrift store, you’re ensuring those clothes stay out of the landfills.
Some people think that well-worn clothes shouldn’t go to thrift stores. But, sometimes, all an item needs to get in better condition for wear is a little TLC. The landfill shouldn’t be an option!
It Fosters Curiosity and Creativity
Looking through all the different clothing racks and sections in a thrift store also does wonders for fostering your own creativity. We mentioned you’ possibly feel more encouraged to experiment with different pieces when you head to a secondhand shop. That’s the curiosity building inside you, making you wonder how you can get these different, unique pieces to work. Curiosity often spurs creativity—latch on to that. Since the price tags are so reasonable, why not buy that pair of old-school mom jeans and paint flowers on them when you get home or cut them into shorts? There are so many ways to utilize the items you find in thrift shops, and it’s not low-risk, low-reward—it’s often low-risk, high-reward!
Helps You Focus on Important Things
Thrifting has done a magnificent job at changing people’s perspectives. Rather than relying on mainstream media to decide what’s “in” and what’s “out,” people are taking steps to stay true to themselves and to their own personal styles. It seems so minuscule, but this act of making personal choices leads to so many other facets of life. Here’s an example: when you purchase a brand-new piece of clothing, it doesn’t really have a story behind it. But when you go to a thrift store, every item has a story. That jacket you chose may have been someone’s favorite clothing item for years. The mug you picked up was a gift from a daughter to her dad. These stories spur more mindfulness when you’re shopping—and mindfulness in life is key!
Hopefully, this guide to why you should shop secondhand spurs you to your nearest 2nd Avenue Store. We offer an incredible variety of items, from clothes and home goods to electronics and furniture. We want you to feel like you can find whatever you need—at a fraction of the price. We just reopened all of our stores, so make sure to visit our thrift stores in Union, NJ, and our other locations. Refine your style and help the planet when you shop with us!