6 wardrobe staples that you should buy second-hand

These thrift shop finds will have a permanent place in your wardrobe.

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God, I love vintage shopping. Not only is it better for the environment, but it's a great way to pick up one-of-a-kind and beautiful quality pieces. Plus, your wallet will be pleased to hear that it's usually a helluva lot cheaper than buying new threads.

As a well-seasoned vintage shopping veteran, I've rounded up 6 fashion staples that you should thrift. I swear on my 1970s Van Halen tee, these babies will have a place in your wardrobe year in and year out. So listen up and take notes for the next time you hit up an op shop, flea market or eBay.


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1. Jeans

Denim will never go out of style and I consider my vintage Levi's to be one of the best dang purchases I've ever made. Because it's already worn in, used denim is usually super comfy and you don't have to worry about it stretching after you've found the perfect pair.

Sorry to be a downer, but denim production is a massive drain on our resources. According to Good On You, 2 billion pairs of jeans are produced every year, and just one pair of jeans uses 3,781 litres of water to make. So you're keeping clothes out of landfill and reducing your environmental impact by thrifting your denim instead.


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2. Blazers

Blazers are THE moment of street style fashion this year, but they're also an essential workwear item. You'd be hard-pressed to find a brand new wool, linen or cotton blazer that didn't cost you upwards of one (or a few) hundred dollars, whereas you can pick one up for just double digits at plenty of thrift shops.

You can thrift blazers in all shapes, colours and styles too. I may be revealing a little bit too much about my excessive shopping habits, but I've personally picked up vintage blazers in classic black, pinstripe, brown houndstooth and baby pink.


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3. Graphic T-shirts

From Harley Davidson and band tees to Disney and Hard Rock Cafe merch, I own way more vintage T-shirts than any person should. I can vouch that they're super versatile, and the best part is that they age like a fine wine.

I love vintage tees because not only do they look cool AF, but they're also a little piece of history. The rarer the print and the older the shirt, the more it'll increase in value over time. So consider it an investment, doll.


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4. Leather anything

And I mean anything. I'm talking leather pants, biker jackets, blazers, bomber jackets, boots. You name it and you can probably pick it up second-hand.

You're likely to fork out hundreds (if not well into the thousands) for new and genuine leather goodies. Whereas you can pick up vintage 100% leather items for a fraction of the price. I've snapped up buttery soft leather pants for $60, having seen new pleather pants from fast-fashion retailers go for double the price.


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5. Faux fur jackets

Faux fur jackets and coats are another timeless classic that instantly give your outfit the rockstar tick of approval. There's no shortage of options out there either. Whether you're searching for the perfect animal print or a long Afghan coat a la Penny Lane in Almost Famous, I guarantee you'll find it if you search the Internet (or clothing racks) long enough.

As they're made of synthetic materials that don't break down easily, picking up a second-hand faux fur coat is the more eco-friendly option too.


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6. Button-up shirts

Button-up shirts are another example of an enduring fashion item that's very on-trend right now. As you've probably noticed all over TikTok, Instagram and Pinterest, pastel striped and crisp white boyfriend shirts are a must-have right now.

Not only are second-hand button-up shirts often made of much nicer materials (no poly-blends for you), they're also usually heaps cheaper than any brand new alternatives. Pro tip: If you want to rock the boyfriend shirt look, shop in the men's section.


If you're obsessed with all things vintage, check out our thrift shop shopping challenge series on the Finder Style YouTube channel. And if you're looking for other ways to shop more sustainably, read our round-up of fashion brands doing their part for the planet.

Need help restocking your wardrobe? Check out the latest fashion deals, see retailers with free shipping offers and shop across our extensive buying guides.

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