Charity Shop Shopping Top Tips
by Conrad Langridge
Once upon a time, the humble charity shop was frequented by thrifty pensioners and creative students looking for fancy-dress.
But times have changed and now the negative impact of FAST FASHION is so widely known a new kind of shopper is filling the store… the eco-conscious!
Sales are through the roof, clothing donations are rolling in and there’s never been a better time to snap a brucie bargain whilst reducing environmental impact.
12 Charity Shop Shopping Top Tips!
Zero. Wear What You Already Own
£30bn of unused clothing hangs in UK wardrobes.
1. Plan Ahead
You are most likely to buy new when you are in a rush.If you know you have a wedding in a few weeks and need a new pair of trousers... start looking early to avoid the last min *NEED* to buy new!
2. Borrow Before You Buy
Your friends, family, colleagues may have an item of clothing you are looking for.
3. Research Local Shops
Check your local area - work, home, home-home - and get to know the best shops. More affluent areas tend to have higher quality items that last longer. Google or https://www.charityretail.org.uk/ are both great for searches!
4. Shop Regularly - Buy Irregularly
Charity shops aren't convenient and they won't always have what you are after. Try and drop into your local shops once a week for a super quick browse. Monday's are my day (fresh after the weekend donations) shhh!
5. Think Beyond The "Season"
If you see a high-quality jacket in the summer... think ahead for the winter. Also worth asking the store if they have a non-seasonal item in storage. Think wellies for summer festivals.
6. Spark Joy
Only buy if you know you are going to love wearing it! Buying something from a charity shop that you never wear… isn’t sustainable.
7. Know Your Size
Charity shops are often disorganised, and they only have one size for each item... so its key you know your size.
8. Swap Shop
Follow the Marie Kondo approach and keep the size of your wardrobe down. By taking you un-used items to the shop you help keep the charity shop circle of goodness going.
9. Check Before You Buy
Check items you buy are in good condition, look out for missing buttons or undesirable marks. Obviously you can sew a button...but know what you are willing to do... the worst thing is to buy something and then never use it!
10. Ask To Hold Items
If your not sure, ask the charity shop to hold an item for you - saves you buying stuff that is just impulse, if you want it… you will go back.
11. Keep An Open Mind On Size
Remember you can always turn up jeans or hem in a dress!
12. Understand The Charity Shop Mission
If you have a choice on where you shop, you may choose the shop at a charity that aligns with your values.
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