Five tips to follow if you want to shop secondhand like a pro

Posted by: House of Colour, June 02, 2023

With the fashion industry and consumers becoming more aware of their impact on the environment, from consumption to the production of raw materials to the irresponsible disposable of clothing, now more than ever we need to shift our mindset and understand the importance of sustainability.

You and your wardrobe can do your part for the environment which is why we want to share some tips and tricks on how to shop smart without losing an ounce of your unique style. 

Charity shopping and thrifting is an increasingly popular activity for those who are looking to spice up their wardrobe in a way that is sustainable for the planet but also affordable. After all, being sustainable doesn’t always have to come with a high price tag. And not only will you come across one of a kind, unique finds, but it also supports a good cause.

Keep reading as we take a closer look at how you can make a positive impact on the planet through your fashion choices and look and feel amazing in 5 easy steps!



Understanding your personal colour palette and clothing personality can help you identify which colours and styles look best on you, so will be able to identify which items are worth trying on and which ones are not. This will help you save time and prevent you from buying clothes you won’t end up wearing.

Click here to find an expert consultant in your area!



Look up charity shops in your area to see what is on offer. You might want to support one cause over another. Visit different shops to get a feel for what they offer.

Going to charity shops in different areas can also help you thrift some great finds (i.e., you can strategically stumble across shops in Belgravia or Kensington for great deals on high-quality items)

You could also go to car boot sales, markets or even secondhand selling platforms such as Vinted or Depop.



Retail shops make it easy for us by curating displays that fit that season's colour palettes and trends, so charity shopping can be intimidating. Retail shopping may seem convenient, but sometimes it can be easy to get lost in a world of what you think you should wear versus what you actually want to wear.

Keep in mind the season and fit you discovered in your consultation, and this will help you stay focused and avoid getting overwhelmed or impulsively buying. Plus, most charity shops section clothing by colour making it visually easier to your optimal shades.

Why not use your MyHoCLookBook to make a list of the things you want or need before you start shopping? MyHoCLookBook is available to all colour analysis and style clients after a consultation. It offers personalised style advice from HOC’s expert consultants who can give you feedback and recommendations on your outfit choices and help you style new looks.



Charity shops often have a no-return policy, so it’s important and helpful to try things before you buy them. You will never really know how you feel about something until it’s on you, so have a go and don’t be shy to ask for the fitting rooms or help. Focus on how the items make you feel, and how they would fit in with the rest of your wardrobe.

If you love the item, but it’s too big, think about what a worthy investment it would be to get it altered.



Yes, you are getting a bargain. But if something isn’t in good condition, and has stains or rips, you probably won’t get as much wear out of it and to the back of the closet it’ll go!

Instead, check labels to see if the item is made from long-lasting materials.

Check the quality and function of zippers, buttons, and stitching. And most importantly, check the thickness of the fabric to ensure it isn’t see-through.

Don't forget you can always alter the items or add new materials to create something completely different.


Charity shopping is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint whilst also supporting a good cause. By following these steps, you can become a pro at charity shopping and finding unique, affordable clothing that fits your optimal colour season and personal style.

By making informed choices and being open to discovering and exploring new things, we can all do our part in creating a better world for ourselves and future generations!

Give these tips a try and tag us in your thrifted outfits on Facebook and Instagram!


Written by: Kerrie Boachie 

Guest Edited by: Lisa Quick