Thrift store

Thrift store shopping tips

So many people overlook the value of a thrift store. I’ve found great name brand clothing in new and like-new condition nearly every time I go to the local thrift store. However, to find the right items, you need to prepare before you go thrifting.

5 thrift store shopping tips

1. Write down measurements. If you are shoping for the kids, but they won’t be with you, then make sure you have sizes and measurements written down for each of them. I know my youngest wears a medium , but has a pants length of 36in. So, I can measure anything before buying it to find out that it doesn’t fit.

You can measure pieces of clothing that fit well right now. You don’t have to measure your child if you or they don’t want to.

2. Take cash and set a budget. Some stores won’t take credit cards, and you don’t want to spend more than you have. I’ve seen regular sun dresses that cost $9.99 in our local thrift store and I’m not sure that’s such a great bargain. Sometimes they have name brand shoes that I know are expensive, but they stil want me to pay $20 or $30 for a used pair of shoes. If it doesn’t fit in my budget, then it’s not a bargain!

3. Know what you are going for ahead of time. If you are shopping for clothing for back to school, then note how many of each type of item you need for each family member. It might take 2 or 3 trips or several thrift stores, but you’ll know how many you have at each store so you won’t buy more than you need. Try to pair up items. Will that shirt look good with any of the jeans you bought for your son, or will those shoes really match the Easter dress you just bought your daughter? Don’t buy it just because it’s a good bargain.

4. Look over the item. Are there rips, stains, or loose seams? Is that fabulous bar stool bolted together well?

5. Give back. Every 6 months or so, I go through my closet and the kid’s clothing too, to get rid of things we dont’ wear or that don’t fit any longer. I bag them up and take them to the donation center at the local thrift store.


I'm Jenn Alex, a single mom , part time Business and Personal Coach, website designer, and style writer. You'll usually find me writing about fashion, working from home, or special needs kids and the parents who care for them.

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