How to thrift like a pro: Tips and tricks on scoring secondhand gems


(NEW YORK) — Thrift shopping is a great way to score trending and vintage looks on a budget.

Thrifting has been around for decades but sometimes it can be a challenge to know the best ways to find exactly what you are looking for.

ABC News’ Good Morning America set out to a handful of thrift shops across the country to learn some best practices from the pros, whether you are searching for clothing for adults and kids, wedding attire, furniture or something else entirely.

Tip 1: Ignore sizes and always try on

Yoshi Isogaya, a sales associate at Jet Rag, a vintage thrift store based in Los Angeles, told Good Morning America that thrifting “can be very overwhelming.”

“You have to take your time and look through all the racks, have patience,” Isogaya said.

While shopping at Jet Rag, Good Morning America lifestyle correspondent Lori Bergamotto had a similar insight to share.

“I tried on jeans three sizes up from what I normally wear — and they were too tight. You have to try everything on before you find a gem,” Bergamotto said.

Tip 2: Only shop for designer pieces at trusted establishments

Dom Marlowe, general buying manager at Wasteland, another vintage thrift shop based in LA, told GMA that shoppers should “make sure you’re looking for good condition, good fabric, and you’re going to a trusted place” when looking for designer items specifically.

It is important to remember to shop for designer brands only at well-established stores that have professional authenticators on staff.

Tip 3: Start with denim jeans

If you’re unsure where to start, given the large inventory most thrift stores keep on hand, try kicking off your shopping trip by searching for a good pair of jeans.

“Every thrift store I went to had a large selection of jeans. Denim holds up really well over time and used jeans start with that broken-in feel and look,” Bergamotto said.

Happy thrifting!

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