Opinion: Should You Thrift If You Don’t Need To?

By Heidi Papay

While walking through the aisles of a thrift store, you will encounter two types of people: the people who thrift because they have no other options, and the wealthy people who thrift because it has become a trend.

Within the last few years, thrifting has become more and more popular. People who would never have gone into a thrift store, let alone buy and wear clothes from one, now frequent the aisles. It’s great that more and more people are supporting thrift stores, but I can’t help but think that people with means are unfairly shopping there. Of course, everyone has the right to shop wherever they want, but where do we draw the line? People with comfortable income have the ability to buy the best clothes they can find at thrift stores, and supplement their wardrobes with clothes from high-end stores. But low-income families often have no other options; they don’t have the ability to be picky with their clothes.

Thrift stores are great places to find clothes, furniture, and other home goods. Thrifting is environmentally-friendly, encourages recycling, supports the local economy, and gives people jobs. I encourage everyone, no matter their income, to support their local thrift stores. But, while shopping, it is important to keep in mind who benefits the most from these stores.

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