Make Ends Meet: Benefits of secondhand shopping

This money saving trend is also getting applause from many, as it gives unwanted clothes a second chance at new life.
Published: Sep. 30, 2022 at 3:37 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - As families fight inflation, secondhand clothing sales are booming. This money saving trend is also getting applause from many, as it gives unwanted clothes a second chance at new life.

WAVE Meteorologist Jessica Dobson is happy to share not only how much she has paid for an item of clothing, but any tip or secondhand site she uses to help you get great deals too.

“You can find just about anything,” Dobson said.

Dobson learned more about secondhand shopping from a friend who was also in television news. But when Dobson steps in front of the lights and the green screen, she looks like a million bucks.

“I am not ashamed to say I paid five dollars for a dress,” said Dobson proudly.

Dobson is a thrift shopper and has been for a long time. With each buy, she learns a bit more and shares a bit more with others.

She is not the only one that benefits from the selling of secondhand clothing.

“People want to get rid of their stuff, even if it just means a couple of dollars,” Dobson said.

Thrifting on secondhand online shops like PoshMark, ThredUp and The Real Real has become popular and trendy.

ThredUp said the global secondhand apparel market will grow three times faster than the global apparel market overall.

“It reminds me of kinda like a yard sale, just online,” Dobson said.

When strolling through the aisles of a store, people can stop and try things on, but when scrolling through treasures online, information is key.

“Know your size and know your measurements,” Dobson said. “Everyone, you know, I think has different styles of dresses or clothing items in general that work better for them.”

If there’s a favorite clothing line, color, fabric or style of clothing a person is looking for, all that information can help find a secondhand item that will be loved not only for its price, but for how it will look.

“You know, you can filter it for your size and different colors, and it will populate for any of that or in your size or in your price range,” Dobson said.

Thrifting can take time. Do not rush savings or good looks. Often sites know a person is looking for something and will even offer a greater discount to seal the deal.

“Don’t get discouraged if you don’t find things right away,” Dobson said. “Don’t be afraid to sit and dig. Be patient, because that’s what I love sometimes about shopping like this. I can just scroll and kinda look and favor a few I like.”

Each week Dobson is happy to post her “shop sustainably dress series” find.

“This was only 18 (dollars) and it was a name brand, like if I were to buy this in a department store it would probably be close to $100,” she bragged as she held up a picture of herself in one of her famous finds.

Dobson is proud of the big bucks she saves, but as a meteorologist and scientist, she is most proud of doing her part to help save the earth.

Thrift shopping is good for the environment, because it keeps clothes out of landfills, reduces carbon and chemical pollution caused by clothing production, and lowers water consumption.

“This is a better way of reducing emissions, saving more water, saving more energy; you’re thinking about the cost to make clothing, the cost to import that clothing wherever they’re going to sell it,” Dobson said.

Who knew being kind to the earth could look so good and save so much, including money.

“This is the one that was $5 and still had the tags on it,” Dobson said showing off one more of her shop sustainable dresses. “It’s honestly one of my favorite dresses.”