Secondhand stores like Crossroads can be overwhelming, even for veteran thrifters. Making a plan of what you’re looking for beforehand can save you some anxiety, but don’t expect to find everything in the first store you walk into. The magic of shopping a secondhand store is the possibility of finding unique pieces from a brand you may never have discovered otherwise, or brand-name pieces you love but can’t justify purchasing at original price.
I want you to love the adventure of thrifting as much as I do, so I’ve put together a guide to the best secondhand bargains to spend your energy on!
The first thing I look at when walking into a recycled fashion or secondhand store is the shoe selection. I scan all sizes because brands fit differently and shoes often get moved and put back incorrectly throughout the day. It is not uncommon to find like new or brand new, unworn, and high-end shoes that are already broken in for less than half of the original price.
Coats and Jackets
Living in Los Angeles, there are only a couple of months in the year that a coat is necessary, so I often find it hard to justify the high price of a new one. Coats are an item that I have not paid full price for in years. I’ve been able to find everything from a vintage, oversized denim jacket to a never worn, trendy duster coat.
While I still shop good-quality fast fashion brands like Forever 21, H&M, and Urban Outfitters at secondhand stores, the best bargains will be with high-quality brand name labels. The prices will be significantly lower than the original. And at buy-sell-trade stores, they’ll only be slightly used or, in some cases, brand new with the tags still attached!
I like to keep on top of clothing trends, but I definitely do not buy into all of them. New, trendy pieces can be expensive because of the high demand. Trends tend to come in cycles, so you may be lucky enough to find current trends at a secondhand store from the previous cycle. I personally think the original run of the trend is always best; for example, vintage Levi’s will forever be favored over newly manufactured copycat “mom jeans.”
Does anyone really enjoy shopping for new denim? Finding the right size for you depends on the brand, the cut, the shape, and the style of the jeans (or jacket). For me, the worst part is how the denim’s shape changes after a few wears or washes. Finding a perfectly worn-in pair of jeans or a denim jacket at a secondhand store will guarantee that the fit in the dressing room will be the fit for life!