Thrift like a Pro

As a little girl, I would go thrift store shopping with my grandmother for one of a kind jewelry, toys, books, and clothing; so it is only right that I have become a bit of an expert over the years. These days it is a tad more common for people to shop at the thrift store than it was when I was younger. Now it's a fun challenge and activity that I look forward to with my besties, sister, and parents! 


Over the years I have found a ton of vintage designer clothing, furniture, home decor, vinyl records, kitchenware, and the list could go on and on!


Here are some thrift tips that I live by!

Ask About the Shipment Schedule
I find that the best days to go are on Mondays. Most donations are sent and sorted between Friday and Sunday which allows you get a look at all the new goodies. (Pro tip) Also, most Goodwill locations receive donations from Target's overstock and clearance product. Be sure to find out what days Target makes their donations!

If you Like it, Grab it
Don't ever make the mistake of seeing something you like and assuming that you can browse and come back to it. When shopping at a Thrift Store, there is only one of that item! Pick it up even if you are unsure! You can always change your mind and put it back on the racks.

Be Up for the Challenge
This is important! Although it can be fun, thrifting requires you to be diligent and focused. It takes time. Do not go if you are not up for the challenge. There were times where I have walked into the store and literally turned right around! You have to feel it!

Wash and/or Dry Clean your Purchases
This is non-negotiable. Yes, the clothes are cool and you're excited to wear them, but properly wash them first. (Protip) Anything without embellishment can more than likely be washed at home. But if you have something like a one of a kind sequin dress, don't run the risk of damaging it, send it to the cleaners.

Shop in Wealthier Neighborhoods
This kind of goes without saying. Donations are typically newer and are of better quality in nicer neighborhoods. (Pro tip) Keep your eye peeled for designer clothing; there are tons with the tags still attached.

Choose Quality Over Price
Yes, we are shopping at the Thrift Store for bargains, but, you don't want to just buy any ole thing because of the price. Go for quality staple items like blazers, denim, outerwear, etc. (Pro tip) When shopping for clothing for work, start at the thrift store first. You'll more than likely find quality capsule pieces here which saves you money to buy more on-trend pieces from a fashion retailer.

Carefully Inspect your Selections
It is a must to check your items for damages, stains, and imperfections. Most stores have a "No Returns" policy so be sure to inspect your picks thoroughly.

Shop the Seasons
I never shop for new clothes for the upcoming season without stopping by the Thrift Store first. Believe me when I say, " It will save you a ton of money".

Continue the Process
Be sure to donate as well as shop. It is important to give and not just be a consumer. There are people that can seriously benefit from your donations (Pro tip) All donations are tax-deductible and most stores even give you 10-20% off of your next visit!

Leilani Howell