Wardrobe Staples to Always Buy Second-Hand

Wardrobe Staples to Always Buy Second-Hand

Thrifting has so many benefits. Not only is it one of the most budget-friendly ways to reduce your environmental impact that helps prevent clothing from being sent to landfill. It's also one of the best ways to find unique vintage items you can't get anywhere else.

I don't buy a lot of clothing but when I do, I thrift before buying new. I've discovered some items are much easier to find than others, and a few are only ever worth buying second-hand. I love sharing the great pieces I've found as it encourages others to give thrifting a try.

If you're curious about shopping second-hand or want to know some tips for making thrifting easier; these are the best wardrobe staples to thrift from outerwear to accessories.

How do you find good clothes when thrifting?

There's no quick way to find the good stuff when thrifting. Being consistent—and patient!—will pay off. So you'll need to thrift regularly and be meticulous about scouring the rails in charity shops and thrift stores. When thrifting online, make sure to save searches, set notifications, and search as often as possible.

If you want to know how to thrift like a pro and find the best clothes when thrifting, follow these tips for shopping second-hand and thrifting on Depop. Keep reading to know what brands to look out for when thrifting and the wardrobe staples to always buy second-hand.

What are the best brands to look for when thrifting?

Brand labels don't matter as much as your personal style. When thrifting, focus more on the style, quality, and fit of an item—then check the label for the fabric, brand details, and care instructions.

Although it's a good idea to mostly stick to thrifting brands you're familiar with so you know how their clothing will fit. It's also worth trying out unknown brands, specifically vintage ones, as this is the best way of finding unique one-off pieces for your wardrobe.

There are quite a few well-known brands worth shopping for second-hand. These are the best brands to look for when thrifting: Patagonia, Eileen Fischer, Levi, St Michael, Ganni, Burberry, and Ralph Lauren. The more expensive fast fashion brands like COS, Zara, Weekday, and Free People have decent quality clothing too.

Avoid thrifting these brands: SHEIN, Primark, and H&M or any other very cheap fast fashion items.

Wardrobe Staples to Always Buy Second-Hand

Wardrobe Staples to Always Buy Second-Hand


Having a great selection of coats really elevates an outfit, making a capsule wardrobe more exciting to style. The best outwear can be found on the thrift rails, and it's an item worth always looking out for when second-hand shopping.

Classic coats never go out of style. Think: longline topcoats, trench coats, and puffer jackets. Make sure to check both the men's and women's rails if you want to find high-quality, unique pieces.


There is an abundance of second-hand knitwear to discover in thrift stores, from vintage sweaters to on-trend vests to handmade cardigans. Whether you're looking for a must-have fast fashion piece or a vintage gem no one else has; knitwear is one of the best things to shop for second-hand.

Almost all the knitwear in my capsule wardrobe is thrifted. I have one-of-a-kind sweaters, knitted vests, and handmade jumpers. Each one unique, adding a special something to my autumn-winter outfits.


Charity shops and thrift stores and never short on shirts. They always have a range of styles from classic white button-downs to floaty blouses in every colour imaginable. Since there's so many of them, shirts are one of the cheapest wardrobe basics to buy second-hand.

I would also include graphics tees on your shopping list when thrifting wardrobe basics. There are some real vintage gems to be found on the t-shirt rack in charity shops. When band tees are so expensive and vintage ones are so unique, why buy new?


Denim has been a wardrobe basic for decades. Whether it's a pair of jeans or an oversized jacket, denim features heavily in many capsule wardrobes. High quality second-hand denim is easy to find because the more worn in the fabric gets, the better it looks and feels to wear.

Although denim isn't really my thing, it might be yours. Although I don't thrift for it myself, I've heard the thrift rails are full of vintage jeans and denim jackets—thrifting something denim for your wardrobe should be easy.


This is one of the trickier items to thrift for but is well worth making the effort. There are plenty of high quality bags in classic styles, it just might take some time to find them. I found the perfect vintage bag on Depop but it took me quite a few months to track it down!

If you prefer luxury bags, the best places to shop for those are through Vestiaire Collective and FarFetch. Both websites authenticate items before allowing them to be sold. eBay is another great option since launching its 'Authenticity Guarantee' service.

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Wardrobe Staples to Always Buy Second-Hand Wardrobe Staples to Always Buy Second-Hand