Although there are a lot of environmental issues that need to be addressed, eliminating fast fashion is one of the most prevalent ones in my opinion; so shopping second-hand is something that I always recommend to people who are just starting their sustainable lifestyle.
While resale apps and thrift stores have become more popular in the last few years, there are still some people that have problems with shopping second-hand.
These are just a few of the issues I’ve heard being brought up, and why I think buying pre-owned clothes is still beneficial compared to firsthand fashion.
The Stigma That Pre-Owned Clothes Are Dirty And Low Quality
One of the most common misconceptions about pre-owned clothes is that the word used is synonymous with low-quality.
While the items have been worn before, thrift stores won’t accept excessively stained or torn clothes, so this is not a valid argument. You should also be washing pre-owned clothes whenever you buy them, so you don’t have to worry about them being dirty.
And in regards to the quality, vintage clothes are actually likely to be higher quality than clothes that you can buy new today, because of planned obsolescence.
Resellers Who Charge High Prices For Thrifted Clothes
Reselling thrifted clothes has become an easy and fun way for people to make money.
However, while this is a great way to make second-hand clothes accessible to more people, there are some sellers who charge steep prices for items they most likely got for just a few dollars.
This is obviously upsetting because they’re taking clothes that were once available to people in unfortunate situations and making them only affordable to higher economic classes.
The best way to stop this from happening is to support resellers who charge fair prices for thrifted clothing, that way every seller is encouraged to make second-hand fashion more accessible.
The Idea That Shopping At Thrift Stores Takes Clothes From People Who Need To Shop There
Some people have even accused those who shop second-hand out of want and not out of need, of being the cause of increased thrift store prices.
You cannot blame people who are trying to be conscious consumers of something that is entirely attributed to capitalistic ideals.
If you feel this way about resale shops, you can see if there are any thrift outlets near you. There you’ll find items that are Insanely cheap (I once got almost an entire trash bag filled with clothes for about $20) and likely the last stop for that inventory, most of which will be thrown away if it can’t be sold.
I feel much better about shopping at the outlets, because I know that if those items are not bought by someone, they’re probably going to be thrown away.
Despite the few downsides, shopping at thrift stores and resale apps are still the most sustainable ways to buy clothes.
Even though sustainable clothing brands are a good alternative to fast fashion, they still create waste when being manufactured, while thrifted clothes make very little new waste in the process of being resold.
If you want to start buying more of your clothes second-hand, check out my article on the best places to find pre-owned fashion. Thank you for reading, have a lovely day!