By Maxine Mah
Who doesn’t like cheap clothes? Not Gen-Z, that’s for sure! Thrifting - the buying of second hand clothes from stores like Goodwill, Salvation Army, and a whole line of individually owned stores that are specific to your city. Pros: way, way cheaper clothes that are vintage style (the new trend among teens for all you Boomers out there) that you also have total artistic control of a.k.a. making that XXXXXXL shirt into a cute tank top. Cons: seemingly none! It’s cheap clothes that fit the trendy styles of today. Who wouldn’t love that? But the question is why didn’t previous generations go thrifting? If there’s no drawbacks to it then why weren’t we doing it before? The reason being: we are broke.
The greatest part of thrifting and the main point of buying second-hand clothes is that they are exponentially less expensive than clothes from actual stores. Who wants to buy a $100 denim skirt when you could get one for $20 or even $10. Sure you might have to search for one but keeping your mind open to different clothes and different styles is the beauty of thrifting. Point being: no teen or young adult has enough money to actually buy things from actual brands. Maybe it’s because of inflation but it’s mostly because of our insane amount of student loans mixed with our minimum wage jobs. Compared to that of our parents, college kids are drowning in debt. To everyone who is over 40 reading this, they might not understand the need to buy donated things but for those who have no money - millennials and below - we have no other choice.
In today’s day and age, things like thrifting are important, not only because it provides and outlet for young kids to expand their own personal styles, but because it’s so cheap it has become a trend that everyone can take part of. Not to mention it’s a sustainable clothing option. Buying old clothes instead of just throwing them away is good for reducing pollution waste and with the state of the planet right now thrifting is definitely not the worst thing we could be doing. According to the Huffington Post, around 26 billion pounds of textiles and clothing end up in landfills each year, thrifting can help with this problem. Instead of just throwing away clothes, reusing, repurposing and donating can help reduce the amount of clothes that end up in the garbage. Thrifting is also an endless and unconfined version of a department store, not only being subject to clothes but also items like dishes, paintings, radios, television sets, and more. While some stores sell only a specific aesthetic, or a specific type of clothes, thrift stores sell all kinds. To athletic wear, dress clothes, casual, anyone with any style can find what they need, appealing to those who struggle with finding “their” style.
Find something cute or something you would like to wear at a thrift store? Buy it. Why? Because it’s helping the environment, less than $20, and probably makes you look amazing. Yes, there may be drawbacks to thrifting but for this generation it’s something kids and teens have to rely on, as well as families who aren’t as privileged as others. While drowning in debt and not even having the time to find a job (that won’t even get you 15 an hour), the one thing we all need in our lives is a little bit of shopping.