We often search for the cutest clothes, or the best deal, or the latest trend – but sometimes shopping second-hand or at a vintage shop is the smarter option. And it could be the most ethical one too.
Fast fashion, clothing from stores like Shein or Fashion Nova, is an extremely profitable modern business model that mass produces trendy clothes for dirt cheap. But it’s a major contributor to global warming and often involves slave-like labor.
Shopping at Black-owned second-hand shops, however, could combat this dangerous phenomenon.
Fast fashion usually means the clothes are cheaply made and have to be replaced quite often, so you end up spending more in the long run. Second-hand stores, by contrast, typically feature high-quality pre-worn items at low prices.
But where to find these stores is half the battle.
Yes, Black-owned thrift shops exist, but not all of them have physical storefronts. So you can find them online! Instagram, Tik Tok or Yelp could be useful resources – search “thrift,” “second-hand,” or “recycled fashion.” Finding out which are Black-owned is another struggle, but they ARE out there.
Some of us might balk at wearing clothes others have already worn – but once they’ve been thoroughly washed, what’s the difference?
Shopping at Black-owned second-hand stores is a great way to look good ethically, save money, AND support your community.