Reduce, reuse, and recycle--a universal phrase known for water bottles, straws, paper, cloth grocery bags, or composting.

goodwill store entrance in Cincinnati

Reduce, reuse, and recycle--a universal phrase known for water bottles, straws, paper, cloth grocery bags, or composting. It could also apply to fashion. It is the beauty of thrifting.

Thrifting can come in many forms: garage sales, Goodwill, vintage and antique stores, estate sales, and online.

Any article sitting on a rack at Goodwill has a story. Come up with a story in your head. A dress probably belonged to a woman. Maybe she gave her first business presentation in that awful green dress. Because she did well on her business presentation, she owns her own company.  

Thrifting once had a negative stigma, but is now becoming more mainstream, letting a negative stigma become washed away. There are ones who never went thrifting, tried it and did not like it, or love thrifting. If you have not tried it, did not like it, or love thrifting, I encourage you to take these tips on your next thrifting adventure.

Find your era of style.

There are different styles of thrift stores. You have antiques, which are items created 100 years ago, still in good condition. There are vintage items that are at least 20 years old. Lastly, there is contemporary, which is more recent. An example of a contemporary thrift store would be Goodwill and Plato's Closet. For a vintage shop, there is a store called Hi-Bred in Cincinnati. A store called Legacies Upscale Resale, located in Oakley has antique items.

Go on the Weekdays.

Thrift shopping is one big competition. You are going against other people who are there to find the best items. Depending on the store, they may get inventory every day or once a week.

Go through everything.

Each item is most likely different and unique. Clothes may be hidden and disorganized to some degree. You have to go through each aisle or rack. Check the male department and look for oversized sweaters. Check the hidden sections that may be undershadowed due to other clothing racks. If there is a dressing room, look at the clothes discarded near there by others. It is like looking for treasure with no exact treasure map, but you have survival skills.

Learn the store.

You may have to keep tabs on the store and do your research before or after going. St. Vincent De Paul thrift stores have weekly sales, making second-hand items cheaper and affordable. Each location has different deals going, focusing on various articles. While writing this article, their Evendale thrift store has 50% off ladies' dress slacks and dresses, T-shirts, knick-knacks, and lamps. These sales only last for a couple of days and change frequently.