15 ONLINE THRIFT STORES FOR THE BEST SECOND HAND AND VINTAGE CLOTHING

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Photo by GREG KANTRA on Unsplash #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Photo by GREG KANTRA on Unsplash

Old school thrifting is a challenge, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of the best online thrift stores to help you find beautiful pre-loved clothes faster and from the comfort of your home. 

If you want to read more about why the fashion industry is a dirty business, what ethical fashion consumption looks like and why online thrifting is a no-brainer, jump to the end of this article.

And if you don’t really need that bleached denim jacket, have you thought about fashion renting? It’s like a walk-in wardrobe that just never ends. But if you do need to buy though, this list will help you find the pre-owned and pre-loved gems you need, which is the next best thing to buying, well…nothing! 

So, what are the best online vintage clothing stores?

Our favorites on this list are: Maeven Vintage, who always have an impressive selection of unique, hand-picked finds. Then there’s Persephone, a must-stop-shop for ultra classy, elegant vintage clothing and jewelry alike. If you’re after more everyday second hand clothing,  ThredUp‘s inclusive range and dedication to sustainability will always be a perfect fit.

Now let’s get rummaging with our list of the top online thrift stores!

QUICK LINKS FOR ONLINE THRIFT AND VINTAGE CLOTHING STORES

1. MAEVEN VINTAGE

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Pursephone Vintage #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by Maeven Vintage

About Maeven Vintage 

Brooklyn based vintage online store, Maeven Vintage sells vintage clothing, jewelry and accessories. Their talented owner, Amy Yee was named by Refinery29 as an industry insider for vintage clothing and her gorgeous Etsy store as one of NYC’s best.  

Maeven was founded in 2012 by Amy Yee (with the support of her husband and cat, Yoko, of course) as a side gig after moving from Chicago to New York to pursue a career in art and design. Suddenly, she found a passion that connected the two together:

“The same attractions to colors, textures, and the satisfaction of working with my hands that I’d first found in painting were readily present in sourcing, repairing, styling and photographing vintage clothing.”

She now runs this vintage shop full time from her studio based in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, taking customers on an appointment-only basis.  She even recently hosted her first city pop-up shop!

Why Maeven Vintage is One of the Best Online Vintage Clothing Stores

Maeven vintage ranges from 60s chic to 90s bold (ideal for perfecting that “Friends” vibe!).  Every single one is unique and eye-catching, whether its from an unknown label or vintage Gianni Versace. You never know what you might unearth.

Be sure to read the product description for period of origin, label, marked size, measured size, fabric, and of course, an in depth description of the condition. On that note, rest easy knowing Amy only selects garments with minor flaws at the most.

Plus, since Maeven is an Etsy based business, you get all the benefits of this quirky small business marketplace as a platform, too. That means its global shipping options (great for countries who don’t have thrift stores), easy connection to local sellers (meaning less shipping emissions), and the fact that Etsy also offsets 100% of their shipping emissions.

Plus, it kind of maintains the fun of hands-on thrifting…without all the headaches.  

Budget: $-$$

Available: Etsy

2. PERSEPHONE VINTAGE

The best online thrift stores Image by Pursephone Vintage #onlinethriftstore #onlinethriftstores #sustainablefashion #sustainablejungle
 Image by Pursephone Vintage

About Persephone Vintage

For “curated modern vintage” picks that can only be described as enchanting, Persephone Vintage is a must-shop.   

Whether you’re on the hunt for a one-of-a-kind fairy tale dress for a wedding or some high waist dress-to-impress business slacks for your dream job, this shop has a little something of everything and an endlessly updated supply.

Why Persephone Vintage is One of the Best Online Stores for Vintage Clothing

Even though Etsy has tons of great small vintage shops, Persephone Vintage is one of our favorites for their truly unique and curated classy looks.

With thousands of 5 star reviews (5 stars!) and a wonderful range of unique vintage clothing, including dresses, tops, skirts, pants, jumpsuits, coats, shoes and accessories, Pursephone is one of the top online vintage clothing stores.

Styles aside, the details they provide about each piece make the online shopping experience a breeze. Aside from condition, fabric, and rough time frame of origin, they also provide comprehensive measurements so you can be sure you get the perfect fit.

Budget: $-$

Available:  Etsy

3. MAW SUPPLY

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Pursephone Vintage #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by MAW Supply

About Maw Supply

MAW Supply, short for Man and Woman, is a black-owned vintage store located in Houston, Texas.

MAW was founded in 2012 by couple Norman and Rachelle Clark, who write, “We specialize in providing our clientele with an array of unique, beautifully aged, one of one pieces that suit the style driven male and female. We are MAW SUPPLY, and we do the dirty work so you won’t have to.”

From dockers and retro print button downs for men to plaid pleated skirts and fierce blazers for women, MAW Supply will take you back to the good old days of the 1970s and make you want to shout “Dy-no-mite!”  

You can also support the brand further by purchasing one of their MAW tees.

Why MAW Supply is One of the Best Online Vintage Clothing Stores

While MAW’s selection of vintage apparel and accessories is a bit more limited than others on this list, they keep the vintage train rolling with steady additions.  Besides, too much choice (even when thrifting) is possibly not a good thing!

Between the fun and funky designs and the extreme affordability of it all, it’s no wonder they have thousands of shop favorites.

Budget: $

Available:  Etsy

4. LUXURY GARAGE SALE

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Luxury Garage Sale #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by Luxury Garage Sale

About Luxury Garage Sale 

Luxury Garage Sale is a designer online thrift store based in Chicago, USA. They were founded in 2011 and curate authentic, pre-owned clothing and accessories from top brands around the world.

They offer luxury second hand clothing, shoes, bags, jewelry and accessories online and up to 80% off regular prices. If you’re a local, visit their brick and mortar stores in Chigaco: Gold Coast or Dallas.

They use a consignment model for sellers and offer pre-paid shipping labels and in some cities, a pickup service.

Why Luxury Garage Sale is one of the Top Online Thrift Stores 

One of the best US based online thrift stores, Luxury Garage Sale offers a huge yet affordable range for luxury online thrifting, especially if you look through their clearance section

They also offer complementary stylists and ensure that each piece is inspected and verified by in-house expert as authentic.

As mentioned before, you may come across exotic animal fur and materials which we do not support and would strongly recommend you avoid. 

Budget: $-$$

Available:   Luxury Garage Sale (USA based)

5. URBAN OUTFITTERS VINTAGE (URBAN RENEWAL)

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Urban Outfitterss #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by Urban Outfitters

About Urban Outfitters Vintage

Urban Outfitters is a major retailer, founded in 1970 in the USA and today has over 200 stores around the country and in Europe and Canada. 

While their focus is not on sustainable and ethical fashion, their Urban Renewal range is their “curated collection of original vintage items and vintage that has been carefully selected, re-designed and upcycled into modern silhouettes.”  

They offer trendy online thrifting at its best including “[online] vintage Levi’s jeans and recycled denim cut-off shorts, plaid flannel shirts, broken-in t-shirts, vintage dresses and deadstock finds like camo surplus jackets.”

Urban Outfitters Vintage is One of the Most Affordable Online Thrift Stores

Urban Renewal is one of the more affordable vintage clothing online stores we’ve come across and we love that they offer renewed vintage womens clothing that takes on a completely new style. 

Their vintage range is also available online in the USA, Europe, Canada and Australia

Budget: $

Available:  Urban Renewal

6. REBAG

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Pursephone Vintage #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by ReBag

About Rebag 

Rebag is a designer online thrift store dedicated to luxury bags. They offer every possible bag style imaginable from backpacks to professional totes. 

Being a luxury second hand store, they focus on the usual designer list including sustainable fashion darling, Stella Mccartney, who unlike most luxury brands, does not use any leather or animal fur and instead uses organic fabrics and low-impact dyes.

Like most of the thrift stores on this list, Rebag allows individuals to sell their secondhand bags on their platform. 

Why Rebag is One of the Best Online Thrift Stores

Rebag is a specialist store which means they have one of the biggest ranges for second hand designer bags on offer. 

They also encourage ongoing re-use of the bags already in existence with their Infinity Exchange program which allows customers to return any bag within 12 months with credit worth 70-80% of its purchase price which can then be used towards the next purchase. From a sustainability perspective, this is a much better option than buying new or buying more! 

Budget: $ – $$

Available:  Rebag

7. ASOS MARKETPLACE

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by ASOS Marketplace #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by ASOS Marketplace

About ASOS Marketplace

This UK-based online thrift store is an offshoot of the already popular and trendy fashion site, ASOS. ASOS Marketplace, however, deals specifically in vintage women and mens clothing online.   

It’s not just a run-of-the-mill seller site, either; ASOS Marketplace is essentially a meeting and posting ground of independent designers, vintage boutiques, consignment and thrift shops.  

You can’t sell there as an individual cleaning out their closet, as with other sites, but if you happen actually have a vintage thrift business, you can sign up to become a selling boutique.

Why ASOS Marketplace Is One of the Best Online Thrifting Stores

ASOS Marketplace offers unique vintage clothing online, helping you achieve that super raw London edge without ever leaving the comfort of your PJs.  They are also one of the more affordable online thrift stores with prices starting less than $50.

Everything on the site is modeled by real women, with a whole range of diverse sizes and body types.  We love to see inclusivity in an industry so traditionally non-exclusive.

They also allow you to shop by era so you can filter for 1980s vintage clothing or 60s, 70s and even early 90s… hullo spice girls!

We’re also happy to see ASOS has a clear policy on the use of animal materials in the products that are made available for sale on their site. 

Budget: $ – $

Available: ASOS Marketplace (available in the U.S. and U.K.)

8. TRADESY

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Pursephone Vintage #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by Tradesy

About Tradesy

A website/app tag team, Tradesy is a trendy online thrift store geared toward straight up designer brands specifically for women.

Because everything is a little higher end (with the likes of Zara on the lower end of the spectrum), expect to pay a bit more on this site. Still, there’s no better place to find killer steals on these expensive pieces.

Because knock-offs start to become a real concern once you get into these labels, Tradesey also offers a 100% Authenticity promise. If an item you buy is misrepresented in any way, they refund you entirely

For sellers, take pictures of any bags, clothes, accessories, and even shoes, and send them in. You can even sell second hand wedding dresses here!  

Why Tradesy is One of the Best High End Thrift Stores

Tradesy not only offers modern second hand designer clothes online, but they also try to customize to your own personal taste. With the option to create your own “style feed”, you receive suggestions based on style and previous search or purchase history.  

Plus, a core part of Tradesy’s vision is sustainable consumption. They believe in simplifying your wardrobe, paying a little more for one really nice thing you’ll treasure.

In their words: 

“When it’s as easy to sell as it is to buy, the massive abundance and value hidden in our closets will be revealed, and our very concept of ownership will be transformed. Our belongings will evolve as dynamically as we do when every product has five lives instead of one.”

Budget: $

Available: Tradesy

9. REFASHIONER

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Pursephone Vintage #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by ReFashioner

About Refashioner 

This 2009-born company focuses on high quality genuine vintage clothing. While some of their designer vintage pieces (like those from Miu Miu and Fendi) are understandably a bit pricier, many of their vintage items are perfectly reasonable for the market.

Not only are the pieces really vintage (as opposed to that fast fashion “vintage” sweater), but they provide the story behind each piece, such as a fascinating anecdote about something that happened in it or a favorite memory from the person who once wore it.

Why Refashioner is One of the Best Thrift Stores

Refashioner is a complete fashion refresher.They’re one of the only online thrift stores out there dedicated to keeping vintage alive and well.

With their meticulous quality control, you simply won’t get genuine vintage deals in one sweet spot like you will here. They also allow you to search by era starting with pre-1940s vintage clothing.

They’re passionate about fighting the unethical sourcing in the industry and preserving the now-dying nature of vintage: 

They write about the current state of fashion, “We’re creating the end of vintage: Nothing new is worth keeping (or will last) for 25 years).” 

Budget: $

Available: ReFashioner

10. VESTIAIRE COLLECTIVE

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Vestiaire Collective #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by Vestiaire Collective

About Vestiaire Collective 

Vestiaire Collective is an online thrifting shop for vintage and high end clothing and accessories. They were founded in France in 2009 with the ambition to bring luxury secondhand clothing back into circulation instead of sitting unused in wardrobes. 

Their online platform now has a global offer, with “over 7 million fashion savvy members located in over 50 countries across Europe, the United States, Asia, and Australia.” and offices in Paris, London, New York, Berlin, Milan and Hong Kong.

They offer a huge range of designer vintage women’s clothing as well as thrifting options for menswear, kidswear, bags, watches, jewelry, shoes and athletic gear and accessories. 

Why Vestiaire Collective is One of the Best Designer Vintage Online Stores

They offer one of the widest ranges of beautiful vintage designer clothing online that we’ve seen and are widely available around the world. Their products all include the location of the item so you can shop local and minimize those shipping emissions.

Super trendy right now, they have an impressive range of Levis vintage clothing, which we’re especially into! 

While the prices do vary depending on what you’re after, there are definitely some bargains to be had. To ensure quality, Vestiaire carefully curates their catalogue and once sold, checks for authenticity. 

Like many luxury brands, you’ll find exotic animal fur and materials which we’re not into (to say the least) for obvious reasons so would strongly recommend avoiding these options.

Budget: $-$$$

Available:   Vestiaire Collective (available globally)

11. THREDUP

Image by Thred Up

About ThredUP 

ThredUP is an online consignment store that deals in “Secondhand Clothes, Firsthand Fun”.  

This San Francisco- based company launched in 2009 originally as a men’s shirt swap company, though they now deal only in women’s and kids second hand clothing.  

They are likely one of the biggest online thrift stores with over 2 million items across 35,000 brands “from Gap to Gucci”.  

They probably aren’t the go-to source for unique boutique vintage finds, but offers a little bit of everything else. Purchasing works like other sites, but their selling process is pretty cool.  

Unlike other sites, where you have to list everything separately, all you have to do for ThredUP is order a Clean Out Kit.  They send a giant polka dot bag for you to fill with your clothes on their accepted brands list and ship back to them for free.  

Upon receipt, they professionally photograph the items on mannequins so you can actually see how it fits when shopping. Once they sell, you earn money you can either cash out or keep as store credit. 

Anything not accepted will either be returned to you or be responsibly recycled.

If you don’t care about turning a profit, you can also order a Donation Kit.  The same process applies but instead of giving you a percentage of the sale earnings, they donate $5 to any charity of your choice.

Why ThredUP is One of the Best Plus Size and Petite Thrift Stores Online

Thred Up’s bulk selling bag makes them the single best no-mess spring cleaning partner out there.

Plus, they’re as thred up with fast fashion as we are!  In fact, they want to completely reframe second hand shopping into a shopper’s first choice. With over 65 million items, you can’t help but be a little convinced that they’re actually succeeding.

They also support the sustainable fashion movement, individuals, and organizations with their Circular Fashion Fund, a 501(c)3 non-profit status pending organization.

In efforts to encourage thrift selling online, they created UPcycle, which allows you to spend your ThredUP credit at other sustainable retailers. Right now, only Cuyana and Reformation are partners but there are plans in the works for more platforms to join soon.

We also like that they’re inclusive, offering a filter for petite and plus size thrifting. And they’re one of the more affordable options out there – a great option if you’re looking for a cheap online thrift store! 

Budget: $-$$

Available: ThredUP (available in the U.S. and Canada)

12. PATAGONIA WORN WEAR

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Pursephone Vintage #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by Patagonia Worn Wear

About Patagonia Worn Wear 

A thrift store for the adventurers, Worn Wear is outdoor clothing brand Patagonia’s offer of second hand clothing online. They sell all manner of gently used clothing for men, women, and kids, as well as used outdoor gear at slashed prices.

Before we get onto that further, allow us to go on a tiny tangent about Patagonia, a company currently occupying the first position of cutting edge sustainable clothing brands.  

Their dedication to corporate responsibility happily reminds us that some (albeit far fewer) brands do put their money where their mouth is.

Patagonia CEO (as well as founder of the 1% for the Planet program) Yvon Chouinard writes in his business memoir Let My People Go Surfing (an excellent read, by the way, even for the non business-savvy):

Patagonia will never be completely socially responsible.  It will never make a totally sustainable non-damaging product.  But it is committed to trying.”

From their innovative anti-growth business model to their mostly organic-cotton and recycled polyester fabric choices, Patagonia does its best to design a succinct line of staple, classic pieces that last not only in quality, but never goes out of style.

With their Ironclad Guarantee, they will repair any item of Patagonia clothing sent to them indefinitely, no matter how old. If it can’t be repaired, they’ll recycle it for you.

Or if you just want to trade up and get rid of your Patagonia items you don’t wear, you can send it to Worn Wear in exchange for store credit to use on new or used items. 

Why Worn Wear Is One of the Best Online Thrift Stores

Aside from the killer steals you’ll find on gently used Patagonia goods, they maintain a high level of quality control.If you send in worn or torn articles, they’ll fix it and clean for you before selling on Worn Wear. They are hands down the best option for used outdoor gear.

While the site doesn’t allow you to search by specific model (say you’re in the market specifically for Synchilla Snap-T), you can filter by general product category. Plus, then it mimics the exploratory nature of traditional thrifting, which is half the fun of it all.

With a balance of affordability, a wide product selection, and the knowledge that you’re supporting a company that cares, Patagonia’s Worn Wear is pretty Patagucci from any perspective.

Budget: $

Available:  Patagonia Worn Wear (only currently available in the US)

13. POSHMARK

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Poshmark #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by Poshmark

About Poshmark  

Poshmark is a peer-to-peer thrifting website with an even more popular iPhone/android app that makes buying and selling used clothes online as simple as raiding from your older sister’s closet.  

Definitely geared toward the more modern side (with a few gem retro pieces here and there), Poshmark boasts over 25 million items across well over 5,000 brands. For selection, Poshmark is a winner. They have everything from Prada down to Forever 21.

Poshmark also encourages bargaining.  It’s true some Poshers (as sellers are called) put some pretty optimistic prices on their items, the platform encourages haggling and makes it very easy with their “offer/counter-offer” feature.  

You can also “like” items if you want to be notified about any price drops.  You can even score extra deals by bundling several items from the same seller for discounts.  It’s the basement bargain hunter’s dream… and can it all be done from your basement!

Why Poshmark is One of the Best Modern Thrift Stores

Poshmark’s app is the core of its ease.  Just snap a picture, post, and profit!  For a seller looking to maximize profit, Poshmark is THE best.  

Generally, depending on the brand, sellers can fetch good prices for their wares, often times upward of 50% MSRP.  The downside is the somewhat hefty 25% that Poshmark retains of each sale. While on par with (and even better than) many traditional consignment shops, it’s higher than some selling sites.

From a buyer’s perspective, you can search for exactly what you want. Looking for a Synchilla Snap T that Patagonia’s Worn Wear didn’t have? Just type that into the search and have your mind boggled with the number of options.  

Poshmark has a loyal following in the US with growing communities of thrifting fashionistas in both the UK and Australia.

Budget: $-$$

Available: Poshmark

14. DEPOP

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by DePop #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by DePop

About Depop 

To dip into the stranger side of online thrift shopping, next up is Depop.  Depop is “the creative community’s mobile marketplace”.  

Their website and app functions as a weird but wonderful crossbreed between a social media platform and a global marketplace.  Wait… what?  

Basically, Depop functions like any other Poshmark-like online thrifting app, except that it looks exactly like an Instagram feed!  Seriously, go check it out.

Like its platform, the overall aesthetic and clothing that finds itself there is definitely on the edgier side. Some of it is downright bizarre… perfect for creatives! 

London-based (with offices in New York City and Milan), Depop was founded by Simon Beckerman, co-founder of PIG Magazine and RETROSUPERFUTURE sunglasses.

Depop evolved from being an offshoot of PIG Magazine where readers could purchase things seen in the ‘zine.

Why Depop is One of the Best Unique Clothing Thrifting Stores

Depop may not be for everyone, but for those who want to go bold and really express themselves, there’s no better online op shop.

Not only are the items unique, the photographs and staging are nothing if not fun to browse through. Just like Instagram!

In true social media fashion, the site is as much about actually selling and buying the items as it is broadcasting what you’ve bought and sold.  

It is a “global conduit of connection” not just for clothing, but for creativity, an essence that lies at the core of the company. We love this focus on creativity, because, really, isn’t that what fashion is all about.

Budget: $-$$

Available: Depop (available in the U.S. and U.K.)

15. EBAY

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Image by Pursephone Vintage #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
Image by Ebay

About Ebay 

We’ve all heard of Ebay; it’s been around since 1995!  Perhaps we’ve even cringed at the notion of buying things there.  

Ebay gets a bit of a bad rap, and it has had its fair share of scams over the decades.  However, this California-based multinational company has undeniably changed the name of the e-commerce game.  

Really, it’s the company that made the rest of this list possible.

Why Ebay Makes This List

Ebay can definitely be a bit more of a crapshoot when it comes to quality control and knowing what you’re getting, but nowhere will you find a wider selection from a wider variety of places and of course, it is THE cheap online thrift store. 

Many other selling sites are based in either the U.S. or U.K., two very similar cultural locales.  With Ebay, you have access to all sorts of unique second hand clothing from many cultures and eras around the world… from hip hop to disco!

And since there are so many users, you can really narrow down your search to exactly what you’re looking for, down to the color… and even more importantly, as local as possible to minimise those shipping emissions

Budget: $-$$

Available: Ebay

FAST FASHION IS A DIRTY BUSINESS

One of the dirtiest in the world, in fact.

So why are floral print dresses and plaid flannels so downright devastating?

Aside from the ethical sourcing issues that many people are at least vaguely aware of (like child labor and sweat shops), clothing production is riddled with environmental faux pas:

  • Harmful chemicals: From insecticides and pesticides (fashion accounts for 25% and 10%, respectively, of world use) to toxic dyes that leach into groundwater.
  • Water waste: A single pair of jeans made from plain (not organic) cotton, uses 1,000 gallons of water! Now take a look in your closet and do the math.

This isn’t even to speak of the incredibly wasteful nature of it all.  

The EPA estimates that Americans alone produce 23 million tons of textile trash per year, or about 46 pounds per person! They’re not alone, either.

Every ten minutes in Australia, 6,000 kilograms of clothes hit the landfill. Our textile trash is out of control.

Yet we just keep producing more.  

According to Greenpeace, clothing production doubled between 2000 and 2014, a trend attributed both to population increase and to a rise in “fast fashion”.  

This refers to inexpensively produced (meaning someone’s getting screwed somewhere in the production line) clothing, designed to wear out fast and need replacing regularly.  Fast Fashion producers typically produce a new “season” every week (so 52 seasons in a year) as a way of enticing their customers to buy more, so as to keep up with the latest trends in real time.

Fast fashion is CHEAP, in every way except the one that matters; it’s costing our planet a whole lot (watch: The True Cost Documentary for more on this). Fortunately, there are lots of counter movements starting, which we’ve gone more into detail about here.

ETHICAL FASHION CONSUMPTION – SECOND HAND CLOTHES ONLINE 

This ethical conundrum is particularly tricky for those who love fashion.  

As individuals, we can help by either becoming nudists or (perhaps more preferable to most) by attempting to extend the life of our clothing.  

  • Stop. Buying. Cheap. Trust us, it’ll actually save you money (not to mention the planet) in the long run!  For those three Forever 21 blouses that split at the armpit upon first wear, you could have bought a better made and lasting one for the same cost that actually made another person’s life better somewhere down the production line.
  • Extend the life of your clothes.  This means you might need to stop mindlessly spending on things you don’t need. Try wearing the things you already own!  Have you ever done that minimizing trick where you turn around every hanger in your closet and only right it once you wear it?  See how many things go untouched over the course of six months.  Really focus on wearing what you have.  If we all kept clothing in use just nine more months, we could reduce carbon emissions and water waste by 20-30%!
  • Don’t throw away perfectly functional clothes. Here’s a shocking statistic, courtesy of The Atlantic: Americans only donate or recycle 15% of their clothing.  That means 85% is just being trashed, thrown out before worn out. It’s okay if you don’t want something anymore, but if at all possible, give it a second life by either selling it , giving it to a friend or at least donating it.  

Donation centers are present in almost every community (even smaller ones) and all it requires is dropping a bag in a bin.  While not everything that gets donated finds a second home, the unsold stuff from organizations like Salvation Army and Goodwill typically go to for-profit clothes recyclingcenters, such as Viltex.  It’s not ideal, but it’s better than the landfill.

  • Skip the new and start thrifting.  Instead of spending more money on new clothes, spend a fraction of the amount on perfectly functional and even fashionable second hand clothing. As you can tell by now, there are a plethora of second hand clothing stores to choose from.

And if you do need to buy new, have a read of our ethical fashion guide for tips and info on looking out for the best sustainable fashion brands

AN ONLINE THRIFT STORE – THE SUSTAINABLE FASHIONISTA’S BFF​

All the problems of the fashion industry become most unsettling for those attempting to live a zero waste lifestyle.

If this is your first walk down the Sustainable Jungle catwalk to zero waste, we’ll start by reminding you that zero waste is a lifestyle guided by the ethos that asks us to reimagine how we view a product’s end of life.

Instead of landfills and incinerators, zero waste aims to either reuse or compost

Aside from limited styles and sizes to suit your specific needs, buying used clothing won’t give you the freedom to stick to any sustainable fabric criteria. For us, this means organic, vegan, naturally dyed, Fairtrade, and sustainably sourced and made.

However, thrift stores, consignment stores, or op shops DO help keep 300,000 tons of fabric from the landfill each year. 

The truth is, while not perfect, thrifting is one of the best solutions to fast fashion we have at the moment.   If every person in the world substituted just one new clothing purchase with a used one, we could collectively prevent 6 billion pounds of carbon emissions.

Thrifting is a great (and somewhat adventurous) way to get everything you need.  Well… most of it.  For the more intimate things you probably don’t want to get second hand – see our article on ethical underwear if you need a new pair of comfy undies 🙂

FINAL THOUGHTS ON THRIFTING FOR VINTAGE CLOTHING ONLINE

It’s high time we give the fashion industry a makeover and remind ourselves that, just like us, clothes don’t need to be young to be beautiful.   

If this hasn’t been enough to inspire you, we encourage you to watch the True Cost documentary. It was life changing in terms of our own approach to creating a conscious closet. Second hand clothes can mean a second chance for the planet.  

Aside from buying second hand clothing, look into other options to reduce your clothing consumption, such as clothes swaps (which function online much like these) and community sharing programs.

Fashion renting is becoming increasingly popular with options like Rent the Runway in the USA, Onloan in the UK and GlamCorner in Australia. These are essentially subscription programs where you borrow clothes like you do a book from a library. It’s a pretty neat way to save money, cut your fashion footprint, and have a constantly fresh look.

We’ll end with a term we use a lot here: conscious consumerism. Every time we pull out our wallets, we cast a vote for fast or sustainable fashion. Let’s make our votes count.

We hope this has been a helpful resource for all your sustainable shopping needs.

Feel free to reach out in the comments with any other favorite online thrift sites or even just your favorite thrift store!

Old school thrifting can be challenging, despite how effortless Macklemore made it sound. To make things easier, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best online thrift stores Photo by GREG KANTRA on Unsplash #onlinethriftstore #sustainablefashion
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3 thoughts on “15 ONLINE THRIFT STORES FOR THE BEST SECOND HAND AND VINTAGE CLOTHING”

  1. Hey great suggestions! You should check out swapabee.co.uk as well! It lets you swap clothes and anything else for free! Plus SwapaBee is really into helping people through charity and stopping world wide waste! I highly recommend checking it out!

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  2. Yes those are great online thrift stores. I currently sell on Ebay. The name of my Ebay store is called The Budget Chic Store. I have been also considering other platforms as well. Thank you so much for such valuable information!

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