Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE thrift stores - like I would buy my own wedding dress at a thrift store. That's how much I love them. I think there's a sort of charm about most thrift stores or consignment stores. And you know what they say: one man's trash is another man's treasure. I have found so many really cool things at stores like Savers and Goodwill, and some of my favorite clothing items have been purchased from local consignment stores in my town.

I have always been someone who would shamelessly take any and all hand-me-downs from my friends because who doesn't love free clothes? Thrifting is like having the world's hand-me-downs placed right at your feet, and you can sift through and pick whichever ones you want - like shopping at a mall full of hand-me-downs but without the outrageous retail prices. As the old adage goes, "Everything old becomes new again," and with thrifting, you can easily take old items and refashion them to make something new. One of the things I like most about thrifting is that everything is much cheaper than it would be at a retail store. I could buy a name brand shirt at Savers for $3.00 that would cost at least $15.00 at its retail store. So, I save money and I get some really cool, good quality stuff out of it.

While all these perks may sound fabulous, there's another benefit of thrifting: it's much more ethical than shopping at retail stores. While this isn't the case with all of them, many of the big businesses we shop at outsource their labor to poorer countries. The workers in many of these countries are underpaid and overworked, and experience harsh working conditions. When we shop at these places, we are giving them tons and tons of money, very little of which is actually seen on the workers' end. Thrifting combats this because you can get these same name brands, but you get them for cheaper, and the money is going to the thrift store or the community, rather than the big unethical business. I have always been a big proprietor of trying to support local businesses because I think it benefits the world more than giving my hard earned money to corporations. If you are like me in this regard, I would suggest shopping at local thrift and consignment stores, rather than large chain stores like Goodwill, because when you do that, you send more money into your community. This is not to say that chain thrift stores are bad by any means - thrifting in general is all better than shopping at corporations.

To conclude, if you have never shopped at a thrift shop before, I highly recommend giving it a try, and if you regularly shop at thrift stores then kudos to you. And if you have old clothes and things that you want to get rid of consider donating them to a local consignment store or thrift store. You could get store credit, and it's much better than just throwing your old items away. Help your community and help the world. Happy thrifting!