We’re a few weeks in to #NoNew19 now so I thought I’d share with you some tips for shopping secondhand. Not only does buying preloved fashion save you money but it also keeps mountains of perfectly good items out of landfill. Can you believe that £140 million worth of clothing goes to landfill every year?! That’s crazy.
So, for those of you that want to buy less fast fashion and introduce a greener way to shop, here’s my 5 tips for shopping secondhand…
1. Do a Wardrobe Audit
Okay, I realise this might not sound like the most exciting thing in the world but it is well worth doing, believe me! Set aside an hour or so to empty your wardrobe and really look at everything you have. If you love it and it fits, put it back in the wardrobe. If you’ve not worn it in over a year you’re probably not going to wear it again, so add it to the charity shop pile. Be ruthless. And for goodness sake get rid of that pile of “skinny clothes” that you will “hopefully fit into again one day”! I did this a while ago and it is so liberating to ditch the idea of perfection and embrace who you are.
Not only is having a wardrobe clear-out cathartic, but you may well find some items that you’d completely forgotten about, meaning you don’t actually need to go shopping after all! If nothing else you will have a better idea of what you have and what you need, which in turn will focus your secondhand search and save you buying unnecessarily.
2. Charity Shops
Once you’ve done your wardrobe audit, take your unwanted clothes to a local charity shop and have a good rummage! It never fails to surprise me what people give away and you can find some real treasures. Just make sure that you really do need what you are buying. Don’t get seduced by a bargain or you’ll end up with a wardrobe full of unused clothes again!
By donating and buying at a charity shop you do two things; you’re cutting out waste by introducing a circular economy and you’re also boosting the local economy by supporting a local shop. Soak up those good vibes, people!
3. Vintage & Preloved Shops
As well as charity shops check to see if there are any specific preloved or vintage boutiques in your area. Living in rural Scotland means I am not lucky enough to have such things on my doorstep but whenever I’m in the city I love to see what I can find in the vintage or secondhand shops. There’s a great one in Glasgow called Gladrags on Pollockshaw Road. I hear Grassmarket is the best area to go in Edinburgh but if you know of any must-see shops then give me a shout as I’m heading there in a couple of weeks for a cheeky overnighter!
There’s an app for everything nowadays and secondhand shopping is no different. As well as Facebook marketplace and eBay there are apps such as Vinted and DePop where people list their secondhand wares. I’m still getting to grips with DePop but I’ve used Vinted in the past and find it really easy to navigate. Unlike eBay, items on both these sites tend to have a fixed price although many sellers offer a swapping service so you can trade your clothes instead of spending hard earned cash.
5. Clothes Swaps
Speaking of swapping, you could organise a clothes swap with your friends. We used to borrow each other’s clothes all the time when we were in our teens and 20’s so why not do it now? A collective wardrobe would make for far more outfit opportunities, plus you get to try out different styles without splashing the cash! If you’re in London check out Roberta Lee’s sustainable styling workshop & clothing swaps for some expert advice.
If you’re joining in with #NoNew19 don’t forget to use the hashtag on social media so we can see what you’re up to! Any tips you’d add to my list?
Images from top:
Middle: Striped Italian jumper via charity shop (similar)