Why buying used isn’t gross

Why buying used isn’t gross

Raise your hand if you’re a little put off by buying, wearing or touching used stuff?

I double pinky swear that I wont judge you for having the ewww factor about used stuff! My goal here isn’t to chastise you for your opinions! If you’re raising your hand way up high I can assure you that you are not alone. Often times, when I tell people that we buy virtually 100% of our stuff used I’m faced with some of the most interesting responses. There are those who question us – I’ve gotten asked more than once if we’ve ever “caught something from buying used”. In other situations I’ve been met with really strong and sometimes harsh opinions about how buying used is gross and that I’m actually neglecting my kiddos needs by doing it.

Buying used gets such a bad rap doesn’t it folks?

There seems to be this assumption that buying used is gross and today I’m hoping to show you that buying used is not only a great way to save you a ton of cash but also a good and responsible choice for the environment because it keeps stuff out of our landfills.

Our frugal family really doesn’t attach a value to things. After hard work and the conscious decision to really separate ourselves from consumerist chaos we’ve gotten to a point where stuff is just stuff and doesn’t shape our views of ourselves, our social standing or our place in our community. A long long time ago the story was a very different one and by living a frugal lifestyle out of necessity we developed a new appreciation or lack thereof for the stuff that surrounded us and really detached ourselves from the want cycle that is so common in consumerist culture. But, we do need stuff – tons of stuff even so when it does come time to spend our money on things we always turn to buying used first.

So, before we get into the whole buying used is gross thing, tell me, when’s the last time you went on vacation? What resort did you stay at? Are you a cruise type of person or more of an all-inclusive type? How were the accommodations? Was the food good? Did you send your kiddo to the on site daycare? I promise there’s a reason that I’m asking you these questions – so, keep a mental inventory of your answers okay?

I’m sure most of you have stayed in a hotel, eaten at a restaurant, sent your kid to daycare and driven in a cab before right? If you’ve done all these things then you’ve absolutely touched, used and been in contact with used stuff! Gross right? Or, is it? When you’re staying at a hotel you are sleeping on a used mattress and used bed linens that we hope have been sanitized correctly. When you’re eating out you are eating off of used plates with used cutlery while sitting in a used chair. And, *shutter* when you send your kids to school or daycare your kiddo is playing with toys and reading books that have been touched by dozens or even hundreds of tiny germy hands.

See where I’m going with this?

The Stigma of Used Stuff

The thing is, there’s a pretty big stigma attached to used stuff- that ewww factor is very much real and in many cases it causes people to fear used goods and completely overlook it as on option when it’s time to fulfill consumerist needs and wants. The ewww factor leads people to believe that used goods are somehow disgusting, dirty, germ-infested and useless items or objects that belong in a landfill instead of in your home or mine.

The used stuff stigma often manifests itself in two very real and overlapping ways folks.

First, there’s the personal fear of buying used because of the perceived threat of being socially inferior or judged in some way. When we first started off on this journey I was absolutely one of those people and was humiliated that I was shopping in a second-hand shop. Left with no choice but live frugally to crush our credit card debt I stuck it out and eventually as I started to appreciate frugal living more and more I became so comfortable with buying used that I’d tell anyone and everyone about my great finds and how much money it saved me compared to making the same purchase on the “new” market. Having said that, the social stigma creates fear – because *gasp* what if someone finds out you’re buying used? What if you’re labeled as one of those people who uses used stuff? Well, here’s a secret – it’s your business and nobody else’s. You don’t have to tell anyone where your awesome shirt, shoes, handbag or belt came from.

Second, there’s this pervasive need to keep up the Joneses right? The neighbor wears designer clothes, has a fancy new car and has expensive home furnishings. The whole notion to buy more, more, more in an effort to keep up with this narrative of what is acceptable has really driven people away from appreciating the used market. What if I told you that buying used can give you access to designer clothes (if that’s your thing), fancy cars (if that’s your priority) or expensive home furnishings (if that’s what you value)? Sadly, many people feel this need to buy new to keep up with what society has created as an acceptable way to acquire goods. Society has trained us that to have “made it” in our world you have to buy new and that buying used somehow makes you inferior, underprivileged and a lesser member of your community.

Cost Analysis & Little Frugal Math

I’m a numbers geek and I’m often calculating exactly how much I saved when I find a used treasure. Some times our used finds are absolutely free because we barter or dumpster dive (which is the best case scenario because free is free right?) but when we do score a used deal I always hit up the internet to calculate exactly how much we saved.

Let’s do a little frugal math, shall we? I hope to show you that the savings when buying used are astronomical.

Here’s a current photo of my back balcony. We’ve created a play area for Margsy because this kiddo loves being outside but sometimes it’s difficult to let her roam the backyard when there’s important adulting things going on. By creating this play space for her we know that not only will she be within view but she’ll also be safe and occupied.

When Mer and I decided we wanted to invest in some outdoor activity toys we both agreed that we’d hit up the used market. Kids toys are so incredibly expensive and when you’re buying any type of toy you’re always taking a risk that your kiddo wont really like it. We got really lucky with this haul because she absolutely loves each of these toys and plays with them on the regular.

Now, let’s calculate what this would have cost me new versus what I spent.

* Source: I sourced the prices on the various toys from both amazon.ca and toysrus.ca. I used the lowest price found between the two vendors.

So there we have it. Had I purchased each of these items brand new from Amazon, Toys R Us or any similar vendor in my area I would have been facing a 681.79$ expense plus applicable taxes. In our province we have a 15% tax rate that by my calculations would elevate the price to a whopping 784.06$. But, by employing some frugality to our purchasing plan we were able to score all those super cool toys for a total of 48.00$ Yup, you read that right 48$! In total we saved 736.06$ by buying used. Holy, you know what right?

How I clean my new used stuff

Generally speaking most used stuff is in pretty great condition. Thrift and second hand shops are pretty picky about what they put on their racks and the worst of the worst usually never makes it out into the store front. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve bought clothes or shoes for us with the tags still on. Think about it for a second, how many times have you donated brand new stuff to a local organization that resells it because it didn’t fit, went out of style or wasn’t useful for you anymore? Yup, I’m the lady who will likely buy that stuff.

With that in mind, we always employ rigorous cleaning methods to make sure that every item we buy is clean and ready for us to use. It’s no different than buying clothes at your local TJ Max or Target. There’s a good chance someone or several people tried it on before you so washing it before wearing is always a good idea right?

When it comes to clothing items, linens or any other cloth type product we always give the items a good soak in a hot water and vinegar bath. We have a handy basin sink installed in our garage and I just put all our goodies in there and disinfect them with vinegar. From there, I add them to our regular laundry that we do roughly twice a week. Once it’s clean and smelling fresh you’d never know that it was bought used in the first place.

For large plastic kiddo toys we haul out our pressure washer which we got from a barter trade a couple years back. First, we rub on a baking soda vinegar paste and scrub off any dirty spots. Once we’ve removed any stains or built on dirt we give it a good rinse and follow up with a soap bath made with equal parts laundry detergent and vinegar. More often than not the toys come out squeaky clean and as good as new!

For dishware and other glass or breakables I usually just give them a good soak in equal parts dish soap and liquid bleach. After a 30 minute soak I rinse them off and pop them into the dishwasher on a clean and sanitize cycle. They always come out looking as good as new.

A couple of things I’ll never buy used

Buying used is such an awesome way to get what you need for literally a tiny fraction of the cost. We’ve taken advantage of used opportunities and bought clothes, shoes, linens, dishware, furniture, baby clothes, toys, garden equipment, pool gear, baby gear, camping gear, winter wear, small appliances to name just a few. I’m sure I’m forgetting a bunch of things but you get the idea that we’re pretty open to buying most things used. But, there are things that we wont buy used because quite honestly it’s not safe. Here is a list of things that you need to be cautious about and a couple of reasons why.

Mattresses/Couches/Upholstered furniture. Unless you know exactly where it’s coming from and that it’s coming from a pest free environment approach with caution. We used to live in an area that was heavily affected by bed bugs and as a result we never bought these items used. If you know where it’s coming from and you are 100% sure that bringing the item into your home wont cause you issues then absolutely go for it.

Crib & Carseats. The thing with these items is that it’s okay to buy them second hand assuming you are 100% sure of the items provenance. With cribs, it’s always wise to check out the model number for any recent recalls (think safety issues, led paint etc). If you know the people it’s coming from and the crib checks out with a little research then it’s absolutely okay to purchase. But, when you’re looking at buying from someone you don’t know and you’re unsure of the age and/or model number then I’d be cautious because cribs can pose serious risks to a baby. The same goes for car seats. I would never ever ever jeopardize my kiddos safety and as a result I would never buy a used car seat unless I knew for absolute sure that the seat had no recalls and is 100% accident free. Safety above all folks.

The rest. Always use common sense. If an item looks truly gross – it probably is. The thing with used stuff is that you can absolutely be picky. If you pass on an item today I’ll bet you any amount of money that you’ll come across something similar soon. Just because you’re opting to buy used doesn’t mean you’re prevented from being a discriminant shopper. If an item doesn’t seem satisfactory to you then simply don’t buy it regardless of its low price. Even when you’re buying used you can opt to buy for quality and durability.

How I approach used shopping

Shopping used is truly no different then buying new. Actually I’ll propose that buying used is actually more fun because you can score some pretty awesome deals and save a ton of money in the process. Who doesn’t like to save a little cash right?

Like I mentioned above, buying used doesn’t trump quality in any way. You can totally buy quality clothing, accessories, furnishings, electronics and everyday essentials on the used market. I approach used shopping like a challenge. I want to ensure that my money is purchasing an item that is in great used condition, shows as little wear as possible and will be durable for years to come. Just because I’m buying used doesn’t mean that I’ll accept lesser quality or condition – I want to use my money wisely so I’m picky and selective about what items I bring home with me. It’s okay to pass on an item no matter how great it might appear if it doesn’t meet my expectations.

Beyond this, I always set a budget about how much I’m comfortable spending. If you remember up above where I told you folks about building a play area for my little one I went into the project with a budget. I knew that I wanted to get as many toys as possible for at most 50$. We planned accordingly and headed out bright and early on a garage sale weekend knowing that we only had 50$ to spend. I also knew that I absolutely wanted a table of some kind, a ride on, a plastic house and a net. We drove around and managed to pick up each of our items by being steadfast about our price. When buying that house I was asked for 50$. I told the guy straight that I had to take it apart to get it home and that it needed a good wash so I was only prepared to spend 20$. He agreed and we took it apart and hauled it home.

A couple of buying used suggestions: go into any shopping situation with a budget and a list of exactly what you want. Negotiate whenever you can and be upfront about your best offer. Be prepared to walk away if you can’t respect your budget or if it’s not exactly what you need. Buying used can also be a trap in that the low cost can convince us to buy buy buy because we’re getting such a great deal. Always shop wisely even if you’re not spending a ton of money.

What buying used is not

  • Buying used is not a reflection of your worth as a person, member of society or social standing. Wearing used clothes and eating off used dishes with pre-loved utensils in no way minimizes your worth as a person. You my friend are not a reflection of your stuff.
  • Buying used does not mean you are poor, underprivileged and/or miserly. Instead, its a reflection of the frugal priorities you’ve set yourself.
  • Buying used is not only for the extremely cheap. Instead, it’s a conscious and well thought out decision for the well being of both your wallet and the environment.
  • Buying used isn’t gross, dirty or disgusting – it’s a sustainable way to get what you need at a fraction of the cost!

Managing the social stigma

Before I wrap up this super long post ( I apologize for that by the way – once I get going I just can’t seem to stop!) I want to address managing the social stigma that comes from buying used. I got into it up at the top of this post but if you’re just skimming I’ll give you a quick recap. Essentially, society has taught us that it’s gross to buy used by manipulating our belief system. They’ve enveloped used goods with an ewww factor that prevents many people from taking advantage of buying on the used market. We’ve been taught that buying used is gross and disgusting and so we’re feeding into consumertist chaos by overpaying and overbuying on the new market. When we walk into a room we don’t generally thumb off the places we bought each piece of our outfit. When we have a dinner party we don’t start the meal by listing off where our dishes, cutlery or tablecloth were bought. Buying used is a personal decision. If you’re into it great – if you want to try it but fear being judged just remember that it’s absolutely your business and nobody elses. Buy used and keep it your little secret if need be!

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Interested in reading even more frugal living posts? Have a look at these:

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73 Comments

  1. June 26, 2017 / 7:03 am

    Awesome jenny, worth reading a longer post for such a good topic….we’re totally on board and used to make games out of it for our daughter (like find a dvd we don’t own or find a hat/belt/purse you like for £1 or less) so now she’s a teen and still happy to go second hand clothes shopping: No stigma. Love the post, thanks again x

    • June 26, 2017 / 7:14 am

      Thank you so much Anna! There’s just so much stigma surrounding buying used! I love what you are doing with your daughter! I hope to do something similar with Margsy as she ages!

      • June 26, 2017 / 8:23 am

        Thanks! I’ve re-blogged it too! I’m sure Margsy will grow up to be awesome xx

  2. June 26, 2017 / 8:53 am

    Great post! I’ve been buying my kids’ clothes and toys from yard sales for several years and have found so many great things–many things still with the tag on.

    • June 26, 2017 / 8:54 am

      Thanks for reading Jen! The used market for kids things is especially great because of how quickly kiddos outgrow their stuff! Thanks for sharing.

  3. June 26, 2017 / 9:38 am

    Thanks for the Post! 90% of the time I love buying used and getting a good deal. However, I’ve never been able to bring myself to buy used shoes. How do you clean yours when you buy them? I would love to be able to buy them if I knew how to sanitize them well.

    • June 26, 2017 / 9:42 am

      When it comes to shoes I generally use a Lysol spray and vinegar solution. Material shoes can even go in the washing machine. When it comes to leather though I tend to stick to a really good cleaning with Lysol and white vinegar. I’d hate to damage them ya know? I look at it this way when you buy a new pair dozens of people have potentially tried them on. A good cleaning is really quite efficient at getting rid of the icky factor!

      • June 26, 2017 / 2:10 pm

        I have never thought of vinegar! Thanks for the tip and for your continually inspiring posts!

        • June 26, 2017 / 2:10 pm

          Thank YOU for reading! 🙂

  4. June 26, 2017 / 10:15 am

    Yipee for this post. I garage sale every Saturday with my girlfriend, coffee in hand, and we find the BEST gently used goods ever. We call them the DOTD – people are shocked by what we find. I don’t need toys any longer, but the rush we get when we find a table full of housewares/frames/kitchen wares or purses is indescribable! I KNOW only those that do this, will “get it..” Nothing like a bit of hot soapy water (with a bit of bleach) to clean up anything. Shoes are a tough one. I typically will check out the bottoms, insides, etc. I have lucked out and found a couple of beauties never worn… and paid only $5. Great post Jenny, and your blog keeps getting prettier and prettier! #jelly Happy Monday All! LA

    • June 26, 2017 / 10:22 am

      Thank you lovely!!! Sounds like you’re a pro at buying used which is great! There are SO many treasures to be found – it’s really quite unbelievable and sad at the same time. These garage sales and the volume of stuff just proves how distorted the buying cycle is.

      The thing about shoes. I’ve lucked out too. I’m also super picky and wont buy shoes that are in terrible condition. I try to find pairs that come from homes where the owner never wore them or they didn’t fit right etc etc. You can usually tell which pairs those are with a good inspection.

  5. June 26, 2017 / 1:45 pm

    I LOVE this post! I’m a huge fan of garage sales and thrift stores. I love your info on how to clean used items – I will definitely keep this blog as a reference!

    • June 26, 2017 / 2:01 pm

      Thanks for reading Christiana!!! <3

  6. June 26, 2017 / 3:49 pm

    This is such a great post and I am totally with you as I am a total thrift store junkie.

    I buy everything from clothes to house decor items to books and toys. The only thing I can’t bring myself to buy is shoes – silly I know, I’m sure they are fine but I just can’t do it.

    • June 26, 2017 / 4:00 pm

      Thank you so much for visiting and taking the time to share this with me! Shoes are difficult, I admit. I don’t buy them unless they are in great to nearly new condition!

  7. June 26, 2017 / 5:22 pm

    I love the list of your savings on the children’s outdoor toys, really makes it hit home and should make everyone to check out the used selection before making a new purchase!

    • June 28, 2017 / 8:01 am

      A lot of times you’ll catch toys that kids played with only a few times. In other words they are in nearly brand new condition! Thanks for reading Lisa!

  8. June 26, 2017 / 7:03 pm

    I completely agree with you!! It’s totally not gross to buy things used. As long as you clean them, what’s the problem?! I’m definitely pinning this though so when I buy some used stuff for an apartment someday, I’ll remember how to clean them.

    • June 26, 2017 / 7:04 pm

      So glad to hear you’re a fan of the used market! I bet you’ll find a ton of stuff for your apartment when the time comes!

  9. June 26, 2017 / 7:14 pm

    Thank you! This was totally worth the read. I have no qualms about buying second hand or even picked up things put out to end up in the landfill. (This is how I got a good turtle sandbox and a practically new kitchen for my toddler.)Do use discretion and practice thorough cleaning, though. Actually, buying used and repurposing is very popular and in fact a badge of pride. DIY’ers turn trash to treasures every day. It is shows great vision and creativity! I’ll jump on the soapbox with you anytime!

    • June 28, 2017 / 8:02 am

      YES! I love everything about your comment Amanda!! Great job on the sandbox! That’s a super awesome find!

  10. June 27, 2017 / 7:25 am

    I buy used all the ime and love my local charity stores for a bargain! I love this post and found myself nodding my head a lot!! Great work x

    • June 27, 2017 / 7:32 am

      Thanks for reading Suz! It’s always so nice to connect with other like minded folks!

  11. June 27, 2017 / 9:08 am

    I always love a good used find! “Someone’s trash is another persons treasure” is definitely true! I do agree though, there are some things I won’t try used!

    • June 27, 2017 / 11:14 am

      Absolutely!!! You really never know what you’ll find. But, like anything you need to be careful and although we’re a frugal family there are still things I would never buy used. Thanks for reading!

  12. June 27, 2017 / 10:11 am

    Such a great post! I have to agree with the things that you just don’t buy used! Definitely understand if you know the person you’re buying from there may be an exception for car seats, but otherwise, very great ideas here! Garage sales and buy sell sites are great to get a bargain!

    • June 27, 2017 / 11:16 am

      Car seats are tricky! I actually have a used car seat but I was very careful when getting it. I traded for it with a mum friend who I 100% trust. I’ve often seen people picking them up on trash day. Although the seat might look like it’s in good condition there’s no way to know if it’s been damaged in any way that might compromise its safety ya know?

  13. June 27, 2017 / 10:12 am

    As always a thought provoking Post, however I would say here in the UK attitudes to buying used are slightly different. My Town has @ ten donated-to Charity Shops (most Towns do) and ‘Freecycle’ is booming, in fact we ‘take the mickey’ out of my sis-in-law because ALL her young children’s clothes come from Charity Shops, bought even when she’s on holiday somewhere!!!

    • June 27, 2017 / 11:17 am

      Thank you so so much for your continued support Andrew! I really appreciate it!

      I’m very jealous that buying used is more normalized in your neck of the woods. I’m hoping the same thing happens around these parts soon too!

  14. June 27, 2017 / 11:54 am

    I am so programmed just to go to Amazon and have it arrive on my front porch. However, you make a VERY good argument for why I need to stop this immediately! Thank you so much for your post – it will save me thousands!

    • June 27, 2017 / 1:01 pm

      Thank you for reading Tiffany!! Technically, if you join local garage sale groups you can buy used while online too. It might not arrive at your door but I’m sure you can score some pretty cool stuff in your neighborhood!

  15. June 27, 2017 / 12:05 pm

    This is a great post. I get so frustrated by the stigma associated with living within your means (and the stigma attached with being poor itself for that matter). I honestly love the idea of buying used but I have trouble finding the time to find what I need used. I’m not a big shopper, so finding the time to look for things when they are less obvious to find than at a box box store kind of overwhelms me. Any tips?

    • June 27, 2017 / 12:13 pm

      I was nodding my head while reading this. The stigma is very real and so inaccurate right?

      As for finding what you need. It can get really frustrating because buying used absolutely requires more patience than say heading to Walmart. I totally totally get that.

      I’d suggest maybe joining some local facebook or online groups where you specifically request what you’re looking for. Often times people will reply if they have what you need and you can go from there. This is especially interesting because often times you can set your price straight out. It can make for a very valuable transaction!

      Hope that helps! 🙂

      • June 27, 2017 / 3:34 pm

        It does! Thanks so much.

        • June 28, 2017 / 8:03 am

          My pleasure!

  16. June 27, 2017 / 12:46 pm

    I love buying used stuff! You can get some amazing deals if you are willing to search and who doesn’t love an excuse to save a bit of money. I’m so glad I’m not the only crazy one who loves to reuse old stuff.

    • June 27, 2017 / 1:00 pm

      Yaaaaay so glad to hear this!!! I’m such an advocate for buying used and it’s so so nice to see other ladies who feel the same way!

  17. ains1014
    June 27, 2017 / 1:07 pm

    Okay so I went into this post raising my hand high haha, I am so weirded out by used things. I came out of this post with a completely new mindset. I have four children and saving money is so essential for our family. I cannot believe the price difference on the outdoor toys! You have converted me lol, now I just need to get my husband on board!

    • June 27, 2017 / 1:09 pm

      Welcome! So glad you enjoyed this post.

      So, if you’re not quite a convert and just want to give it a try – I’d probably start with kids toys. The savings are seriously astronomical! It’s seriously the greatest starting point to acquiring a liking for buying used.

  18. June 27, 2017 / 2:45 pm

    I love buying used. Clothes especially. I think it’s more rare for me to buy new clothes. There are so many good things that people are tossing that can still be good and fasionable.

    • June 27, 2017 / 3:02 pm

      Absolutely! There are so many treasures in second hand shops!

  19. June 27, 2017 / 8:31 pm

    You are absolutely right, we do sleep on used mattresses and sheets in hotels, I actually never thought about it like that! Our coffee table was a craigslist score and there a host of other items in our home that we purchased used. It is fun to hunt for something unique, and I love repurposing or restoring if it is needed!

    • June 28, 2017 / 8:04 am

      So glad you enjoy the “hunt” too! Great job on the coffee table!

  20. June 27, 2017 / 10:58 pm

    It always makes me cringe when people will only buy their kids brand new stuff. They will literally grow out of it or become disinterested in a majority of their things within weeks, if that long! If more than one kid can get some use out of an item, the better. The only time I ever get brand new clothes for myself is if someone else is buying them. I hate clothes shopping anyway, so I only do it when I have to…and even then I get just what I need and nothing else. I really don’t care about trends or fashion, so as long as its comfortable and I don’t feel like I look like a goon wearing it, I’d rather pay a couple bucks than waste my whole paycheck on a single piece of clothing.

    • June 28, 2017 / 8:05 am

      I know! Sometimes you’ll buy a toy and a kiddo wont even play with it. It’s really really not worth the investment. And, i’m with you on the shopping – it’s really not my favorite activity.

  21. June 28, 2017 / 12:44 pm

    This is such a great post, Jenny! I buy used not just to save money but also to help the environment by reusing items. Plus, I’ve found some very unique items in second-hand stores 🙂

    • June 30, 2017 / 7:54 am

      Thank you so much for reading Christy!!! Glad you enjoyed it!

  22. June 28, 2017 / 1:01 pm

    When we had our first child, my husband refused to buy ussed cloths. We had no money, but he did not want our child is cloths from other people. Over time, I was able to show him how much money we could save. Now, he loves buying ussed. So do I!!

    • June 30, 2017 / 7:53 am

      I get that. I think the social stigma prevents people from really getting into buying used. Usually once they try it and see that you can in fact get good quality stuff in very good condition they are hooked! Thanks for reading Anne!

  23. June 28, 2017 / 2:40 pm

    I really enjoyed this post. I always feel like I’m being judged for buying used things!

    • June 30, 2017 / 7:52 am

      There is unfortunately a social stigma surrounding it which makes me incredibly sad because there are just so many awesome opportunities on the used market!

  24. June 28, 2017 / 11:42 pm

    Great article as there really shouldn’t be any stigma. My husband and I buy everything second hand. We brought a second hand bed and couch in our last place (Brisbane, Australia) no worries and I was surprised how easily and for a good price we were able to sell the bed on again when we left to go travelling. What I want to focus on next time we have a home to furnish, is finding second hand items that meet the intentions we set for use and look of each area, rather than just buying a good enough item at the right price. Even if it means a little restoration (which I love).

    • June 29, 2017 / 5:15 am

      This is such a good good point. Buying used sometimes becomes buying for price. I guess in some respects buying used can become buying because it’s good enough but not necessarily perfect. There really is an opportunity to buy exactly what you need for functionality if you’re patient right?

  25. Daisy Rock Vintage
    June 30, 2017 / 6:04 am

    Great post, I love to buy “Second hand” I love to reduce, re-use, recycle. Very lucky here in the UK to have lots of places to find used goods!

    • June 30, 2017 / 7:50 am

      Awesome! i’ve heard that the UK has a ton to offer on the used market! That’s a win for sure!

  26. June 30, 2017 / 8:17 am

    I love this post! And I couldn’t agree more with you – there are so many great deals and secondhand finds that you can give new life to. Any way to be frugal is a win in my book!

    • June 30, 2017 / 8:19 am

      Agreed! Thank you for stopping by Melissa!!

  27. June 30, 2017 / 2:47 pm

    I’m with you! I love buying used! There are a few things I won’t (the same things you mentioned: certain baby items, cloth items that can’t easily be washed/cleaned, etc.) but for the most part we buy lots of used stuff – my kids toys, clothes, furniture, etc.

    • July 1, 2017 / 10:45 pm

      Welcome Caitlin I’m always THRILLED to connect with like minded people!

  28. July 1, 2017 / 12:44 pm

    I love this! Even if you have the money for all of the new stuff I don’t understand wasting money! As long as it can be cleaned, used is great in my book!

    • July 1, 2017 / 10:46 pm

      This exactly. Buying used doesn’t reflect your financial status. Society and the eww factor have created so many misconceptions about the practice! Thanks for stopping by!

  29. July 2, 2017 / 7:27 am

    I used to be one that thought buying used was gross. My parents raised me that way. But now that we have a large family, buying used is just more practical. We have found many things we otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford by being smart and buying slightly used.

    • July 2, 2017 / 7:30 am

      Buying used can be gross in some situations when the item isn’t in the greatest condition. Often times though our buying habits are formed when we are little. Glad to hear you’ve had positive experiences with buying used. When you have a large family I imagine it’s a great great way to save some cash!

    • July 3, 2017 / 9:39 am

      Thank you for reading Melissa!

  30. yridley
    July 3, 2017 / 1:09 am

    This is such an interesting perspective. I’m ashamed to admit that I never buy used (other than used books from time to time). You have really made me rethink the way I shop. I love a good deal, so I think I’ll hit up Value Village. I’m sad that Goodwill closed in Canada though 🙁 Thanks for the tips – very helpful!

    • July 3, 2017 / 9:36 am

      There are so many great things you can get for a fraction of the cost that are often in almost new condition! Best of luck if you decide to take the plunge!

  31. July 3, 2017 / 9:35 am

    Great Post! I love that you shared how you clean used items! Our kitchen table and living room furniture are all used. The chair I bought for our living room was a bit dirty – luckily the chair and ottoman fabric is slipcovered and can be washed. And the wood frame I wiped down. It turned out awesome – for just $20.

    • July 3, 2017 / 10:04 am

      Thanks for reading Jaime!! Great score on the furniture pieces!!

  32. silveryew
    July 5, 2017 / 4:58 am

    Thank you for this! I completely agree with you, buying secondhand (or preloved!) is better for your wallet and for your environment! And at the end of it, just trust your gut – if something is gross, it probably is!

    • July 5, 2017 / 6:52 am

      Yup! Not everything used is worth buying for sure but the majority of it once clean is nearly as good as new!

  33. July 22, 2017 / 6:46 pm

    What a great post! I love buying used if I can. A lot of my casual wardrobe is second-hand. I just look for clothes in good condition and wash them when I get home. I also like used books and games if I can find them. Saves so much money! As for the stigma, most people don’t even know the things are used unless I tell them. I don’t get any flack from my friends and family. They’re happy for me to find such great things and save money. If I’m worried someone will disapprove, then I just don’t tell them LOL.

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