Thrift Store Shopping Tips

If you read my post about how I only pay 10% of what my clothes are worth, then you know that I love to shop at thrift stores. If you have never tried shopping second hand, you have to try it. It is so much fun!


I know, I know…you are probably thinking, “isn’t it more work?”, “that’s kinda gross!”, and “won’t people KNOW I shopped at thrift stores for my clothes?” My answers are: sometimes (but you are saving 90% on the items you buy!), I hope not, and not unless you tell them!

My mom and I go thrift shopping a few times a month and have come back with some crazy deals. I’m talking about Gap, Banana Republic, Loft, Ann Taylor, etc….for $1-$4 per item, including pants!!! I just got an awesome pair of Gap jeans (that fit amazing) for $2. By the way, those same jeans retail for $69.95!!! That is way less than the 10% of original value I usually strive for.

So, in case I have piqued your interest, I have included my best thrift store tips below.


Thrifting Tips
  1. Try several thrift stores so you can find the ones you like. Some are better than others.
  2. Ask the staff when they restock items you are interested in. Such as women’s clothing and children’s clothing.
  3. Keep a mental note of items you are looking for, or are in need of, to add to your family’s wardrobe.
  4. Buy children’s clothing in bigger sizes when you find really good deals (unless season specific). I store items for my daughter in large storage containers in the top of our closets and get them down as she grows.
  5. Get on the mailing list if there is one. My favorite resale shop sends out a newsletter each Monday with their weekly sales and a coupon. You would not believe how many times they put all of their clothing 50% off to clear items out. And yes, my mom and I are at their door when they open on those days 😉
  6. Buy maternity clothes second hand. If you’re anything like me, your belly grows faster than your clothes can keep up with! Usually maternity clothes aren’t worn much or for very long since you are only pregnant 9 months so they tend to be in good shape.
  7. Inspect clothing before purchasing. There is nothing worse than getting home and discovering that your awesome deal cardigan has a stain or tear…oh wait, yes there is…what if you had paid $35 for it instead of $2!!!
  8. Try to only pay 10% or less of the original value of an item. If I can buy the item on clearance or with a coupon for just a few bucks more, it is not a good deal!
  9. Don’t buy something just because it is cheap or just because it is name brand and cheap. If you wouldn’t wear it normally, you won’t wear it for $1 either.
  10. Try things on and just shower when you get home (also, wear “full butt” undies if ya know what I mean) – This tip probably isn’t necessary, but it makes this clean freak feel a little bit better.
  11. Wash children’s items twice in hot water (and yours if you are grossed out at first)
  12. Use color saving sheets when washing in hot water so the colors won’t bleed in the wash.

Shopping second hand has tremendously helped my family. We have had extra money in the bank and I have been able to clothe my ever growing 1 year old who also likes to have massive blow outs! (I’d much rather throw out a pair of $0.50 pants rather than $10.00 pants!!!)

I hope these tips help you on your next thrift store spree!

What are some of your best thrift store finds? Leave a comment below!

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6 thoughts on “Thrift Store Shopping Tips

    1. Yes! I have saved a ton…kids grow so fast! It really is the practical thing to do. Thanks for stopping by the blog!

  1. I am a thrift store shopper too. Thanks for the tip of asking when they restock. I never would have thought of that. I’ve found some really nice designer label clothes that fit great. I didn’t even realize till later that it was a designer label. The thrift stores I’ve been to are non-profits so my purchases are helping them to help others.

    Many years ago when we got a puppy who was growing by leaps and bounds we wanted some warm sweaters for her. But doggie clothing is pricey and she would have only worn it a couple times. So I picked up some kid’s sweat shirts for her for anywhere between 50 cents and a dollar.

    1. Thrift shopping is the best! I’m glad one of my tips stood out to you, thanks for stopping by. 🙂

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