There seems to be a stigma attached to second-hand shopping. I’m sure some of these thoughts go through some of all our minds at one time or another before we enter our local thrift store or Goodwill. 

“I wonder who has worn this? Could it be coming from a gross place?”
“Why buy something used when I can buy new?”
“Only poor people shop there.”
“Everything is ugly and outdated there, I could never go in.”
“If I find something, will people be able to tell if it’s used?”

And all of these questions are valid but Katie and I can see through them knowing these facts:

  • Recently, my husband bought a new pair of wrinkle-free pants and he texted me during the day saying his brand new pants reeked. New clothing is often covered with formaldehyde to prevent mildew, wrinkling and parasites during shipping–especially those shipped from China. YES. Chemicals…all the things that we try not to introduce into our homes since we have kids, pets and yes, a fear of getting a terminal disease. 
    • With second-hand clothing, you have the peace of mind that the garment has been washed several times and that the chemical residue is significantly less than what is found in new clothes.

  • Ever see that label on your new dark or black jeans that say ‘HELLO! Please do not wash me with anything else because I will literally ruin your entire load of laundry and your day.’ Well, it’s not just because they don’t want their dye to transfer to your skin aesthetically. In conventional dye methods, 35% of the color is flushed away after dyeing, while only 65% is retained in the cloth. Azo dyes, the industry’s go-to, release chemicals known as aromatic amines that have been linked to cancer. Dark colors like brown and black contain higher concentrations of p-Phenylenediamine (PPD) a chemical that triggers skin allergies and can cause contact dermatitis.
    • All we have to read is cancer and then we run to Goodwill for something that has been washed multiple times. Or as an alternative, there are natural dyes like indigo that are earth and body friendly. 

As if we needed to give you more of a reason to shop second hand, these are all very important things that consumers need to be aware of when we second guess ourselves the moment we are about to walk into our local thrift store. Instead of letting our minds wander into areas that we consider a stigma of second hand shopping, we hope you will remember these important facts. 


More on this topic can be found here: https://remake.world/stories/news/there-are-hidden-chemicals-in-our-clothing/