5 Tips for Thrift Store Shopping


Like most kids, your children probably beg for new clothes and shoes. You probably enjoy showering them with gifts, but if the family’s finances are tight, clothes shopping may be few and far between. Of course, kids grow rapidly. And because of this, buying clothes often becomes a necessity. What can you do?

Shop sales, look for deals and thrift shop!

If you never have success at thrift stores, you may view secondhand shopping as a waste of time. But your local thrift store can provide the things you need for less. There are, however, tricks for thrift store shopping.  

Ask about store sales.

Like every other retailer, thrift stores have sales. Just call your local thrift store and inquire about their sale days. This is an excellent way to maximize your savings, and if you shop during a sale, you can get more for your money.

Shop alone.

You may enjoy taking the kids with you, but if you’re looking to shop with minimal distractions, leave them home. Besides, shopping at thrift stores is tedious. You’ll have to sift through several racks of clothes. And sometimes, little ones can become impatient. To find amazing deals at secondhand stores, you need to take your time. You’ll get better results if you go alone.

New inventory days.

Secondhand stores typically re-stock their racks with new items on certain days. Don’t be afraid to ask management about these days. Come when there’s new inventory and you might find amazing brands at a low cost. It pays to go often, as many thrift stores receive donations on a daily basis. The trick is being one of the first customers on new arrival days. If you can, shop early in the morning – as soon as the store opens.

Try on your clothes.

Store policies vary, and in some cases, all sales are final. To avoid wasting money, make sure that you’re satisfied with your finds before leaving the store. If there’s a dressing room, try on your items and make sure they fit properly.

Be moderate.

Because of the wide selection and the low prices, it’s easy to go overboard. Before stepping foot inside a secondhand store, set a spending budget. Don’t bring your credit cards or all your cash, as this is an easy way to go over budget. Bring cash, and only bring what you plan to spend.

Learning how to navigate a thrift store can save you money and greatly improve your family’s budget. And with the variety of products, there’s something for everyone. Whether you need clothes, shoes, accessories or household products, your local thrift store is the answer.


  1. natalie nichols says

    These are great tips! Thanks for posting. I have found some really great stuff at thrift stores. My most used item is a running tank top from Gracies Gear with the tags still on it! Worth $60+! Recently I haven’t had the patience, but it is so easy to find unused kids clothes!

    • says

      Natalie – I am a goodwill queen! I used to be on call 5 days a week for work, so I would spend all day thrifting until I was called (if I was)! I made it into a mini second job for awhile! I’ve found Northface jackets, Coach purses and more – priced by the lbs! I loved it, I wish I could go everyday!!

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