Thrifting for years has been something I do on my own. It is my way to think, decompress, and be one with my thoughts. Often when I shop with others, I don’t feel at peace or feel rushed. However, as of late when I go thrifting with friends, I enjoy it much more. What has changed you ask? Well, I have begun educating my friends on why thrifting is important and a valuable art to me. I have done this by extending three things to my friends:

1. Adventure

Thrifting is not just a mundane experience, it is an adventure. Adventure in the sense that thrifting allows for people to find clothing that matches their style, expand their style, and/or test their limits. Thrifting at the surface to many seems like shopping old hammy-downs that folks do not want. However, that could not be further from the truth. Thrifting is an experience. An experience that is marked by adventure because it is one of the few spaces adults are allowed to play and let their creativity flourish unwaveringly.

When you explain this to your friends it opens up a world of possibilities for them. Thrifting does not just seem like a mundane thing but one that anyone can invest in. Adventure can be found in anything including a rack of secondhand clothing.

2. Climate Conscious

Thrifting is not just about the adventure but is also climate conscious. Thinking about how clothes if wasted or placed in landfills leads to the degradation of the climate helps show the importance of thrifting. Many people are trying to become more sustainable and climate conscious. Thus, they try to show this vigor through getting others think in the same manner. Thrifting is a great vehicle to help people think more consciously through. Once my friends understood that they could help the climate by thrifting, they wanted to partake in it immediately.

Extending to others how clothing can be connected to the climate and the Earth’s protection can help individuals want to partake in thrifting. When individuals understand that thrifting is a practice that is community-focused rather than individually-focused, it impacts them differently. Thrifting in hindsight is a simple thing to do but can harbor many positive implications

3. Fiscally Responsible

Finally, thrifting outside of the adventure and the climate consciousness is fiscally responsible. This is one of the main ways, I get my friends to enjoy thrifting. When they start to understand the value and importance of their dollar, new heights are achieved every time. My friends like others tend shop at traditional department stores – and their is nothing wrong with that. However, they are often spending plethora amounts of money on items they could find similar if not better secondhand.

Helping your friends understand that they can get more bang for their buck by secondhand/thrift shopping can open their eyes to a whole new world. It has been so exciting to see my friends get wide eyes when they realize the bargains or gems they are finding for so much less. Often I feel like a proud parent watching their kid graduate college.

Thrifting is not for everyone! However, how can you truly know of it works for others if you do not educate them? Have a conversation with your friends and bring up these three points, and I bet you will be enamored with their response!

Xavier (Zay) is a fashion educator who teaches people how to Slay Responsibly when it comes to handbags, fashion, pre-loved items, and brands. He helps people realize they have more power when it comes to handbags and luxury than they think. Zay lives in the Washington, DC area, is a P.h.D student studying strategic communication, identifies as nonbinary, and is self-proclaimed baghead!