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Shopping secondhand doesn’t mean you can’t still be on-trend and keep up with what’s popular on the high-street. Over the past few years I’ve had a fair amount of luck with finding items that fit with the latest trends. So today I thought I’d share some of my wisdom with my top tips on how to find on-trend items secondhand.
Do your research
My biggest piece of advice is to know what that season’s trends are and have an idea of the types of pieces you’re on the look out for.
Now I’m not huge on trying to stay up to date and on-trend. But it’s easy to fall into that trap when you follow fashionable people on Instagram and you see them rocking incredible new pieces from the high-street.
Following people on Instagram who’s style you admire is the best thing I can suggest. I’d say its best to focus more on the details of the outfits that you admire, instead of the individual pieces.
For example, you’ve seen a fabulous fashion blogger rocking a midi skirt from New Look with some Primark trainers. Try not to get hung up about trying to find those exact items, but instead take inspiration from how those pieces have been styled together.
Instagram’s saved feature is a girls new best friend, almost like Pinterest but for Instagram. I have folders for a range of different things, from spring summer style, to homewares and interiors.
Every month or so I go through my folders and pick out what ‘trends’ I see repeating throughout the images I’ve saved. Currently mine involves a lot of midi skirts, so that’s something I’m on the hunt for at the moment when I browse my local charity shops.
Try Clothes On
Now you’ve gotten an idea of what you’re on the look out for, sometimes it helps to go try things on.
Now obviously if you’re charity shopping this is a given. You have access to a changing room so can try before you buy. However if you’re like me and love a good browse of Ebay and Depop, sometimes it can be tricky to know what sizes are like. I’ve often ended up with an item that just doesn’t fit, no matter how much I try squeezing into it.
Recently I found myself browsing Depop on the hunt for a pair of the Topshop straight leg raw hem jeans, I blame Anna Newton for the desire to own these. But for me, trousers are always a struggle for me and I always have to try them on before I buy.
Because of the specific item I had been hunting for were still available in the shops, I had the genius idea of popping along to my local Topshop to try them on.
Now I wouldn’t suggest this technique if you’re somebody who struggles with impulse buying and know that they would struggle to walk into a high street shop and not come out buying six carrier bags full of new clothes. But if you’re like me and know your passion for ditching fast fashion overrides your desire to shop, then you’ll be fine.
After calling into Topshop to try on these specific jeans, I discovered there was no way I would be able to get myself into the pair of 28inch waist ones I’d seen on Depop. If I’m honest the 30inch waist was also a little on the snug side and I discovered I would definitely need the 32″ leg length too.
Because of this, I know now that, with a few more weeks of the gym, I should be looking out for those particular jeans in a 30 waist 32 leg size. Just spending 10-15 minutes out of my day popping into Topshop saved me about £15 I might have otherwise wasted on buying those jeans in the wrong size.
Ebay Saved Searches
This one has been a new discovery of mine, mostly down to me desperately trying to get my hands on a pair of the Whistles Barrel leg jeans for nowhere near the original price tag.
At the end of last year, I had a personal styling session at John Lewis with Emma, who introduced me to this particular cut of jeans. Sadly with the £95 price tag, and questionable ethics from the brand themselves. They were a no go for purchasing new.
So I began scouring the internet on a hunt for these secondhand, this is where I discovered Ebay saved searches. If you’re after a particular item, have a browse and Ebay . On this occasion I searched Whistle Barrel Leg on the site. Sadly there weren’t any jeans in the right colour/size/price on that particular occasion. But I noticed there was an option to save the search.
Now every-time somebody creates a listing mentioning Whistle Barrel Leg I get an email right into my inbox! I admit I am yet to find the jeans in my size at a price I can afford – but I won’t give up hope yet. Having the saved search makes it easier to find what I’m looking for without spending days searching through eBay in the hope a pair might pop up.
So there you have it, three of my top tips for finding secondhand items to fit with the current season trends. Let me know if you’ve found these tips useful, especially if you give them a try and find that hidden gem.
Do you have any other tips on your favourite ways to bag a bargain? Share them below!
Photographs by Yasmina Magdy