Thrifting at charity shops and resale stores has been very popular among young people for the past year and a half or so. While some teens are tempted by lower prices or vintage pieces, thrifting is also better for the planet than your average fast-fashion clothing shops. Fast-fashion retailers such as Forever 21 or PacSun rely on cheap labor and poor environmental packaging/factories to save money, which eventually takes a huge toll on the state of our planet. By shopping sustainably, you are reducing your carbon footprint, limiting waste, and preventing harmful microplastics from entering the ocean.
Following the Covid-19 outbreak, many have struggled to shop for clothes sustainably because thrift shops are closed or just avoided by the customer. While the fear of contracting the virus is at large, many resort back to online fast-fashion retailers. Here are a few alternatives that are just as easy, and better for the planet.
Depop and Poshmark are re-sale apps you can download onto your phone. With a quick search you can easily locate unique vintage pieces, homemade jewelry and many other things. The apps allow you to have one-on-one messaging with the seller for uncomplicated transactions. Prices range dramatically depending on what type of piece you’re looking for. While it isn’t a traditional form of thrifting, it ultimately saves clothes from ending up in a landfill.
Some brands specifically brand themselves as good for the environment and strive to limit clothing waste. Online retailers such as Reformation, Everlane, and Girlfriend Collective all create clothing that is ultimately better for the planet. While these brands are oftentimes much pricier than thrifting, they offer an alternative to contributing to fast-fashion.
If neither of these alternatives tempt you, certain thrift stores are open to customers. If doing so, be certain to wear a mask over your mouth, nose, and chin and follow social distancing guidelines. Keep six feet away from all other customers and wear gloves for an extra layer of safety. As always, wash clothing as soon as you can. Happy thrifting!