by Texas Homesteader ~
Close the loop! Buying from thrift stores is good for the environment. You support a good cause & you often get higher quality at a lower cost too!
But there’s often a stigma about thrift stores that’s misunderstood.
Easy Ways I Lowered My Eco Footprint
Several years ago we began to be aware of our environmental footprint and took several steps to reduce that footprint. (HA! I said STEPS & footprint – see what I did there?)
Back in my early eco-warrior days I first took a look at the food items we typically purchased in the store.
I learned how to make for myself some of those items I used to buy:
Our own Cold-process soap bars.
Learning those things has been a fun hobby for me and certainly left me feeling pretty empowered.
Then we took a good hard look at the overabundance we already had and stopped ‘boredom shopping’ for yet more stuff to overfill our home. That was a pretty big step too.
How Buying Used Items Have Multiple Benefits
But today I want to talk about something that can make a large impact: Buying used instead of new.
It’s an even bigger way to flex our eco-friendly muscle. Buying items from thrift stores instead of buying new is one of the largest eco-friendly steps we’ve made. Plus it has several other advantages too.
No New Item Manufactured For My Purchase – buying used items means a new whatsit doesn’t have to be manufactured, packaged and shipped for my purchase.
Money Savings – the cost is usually much less for used items purchased at a thrift store.
Better Quality – oftentimes you can buy higher quality for the same or less money than the new & oftentimes flimsier versions.
Charitable Giving – supporting a good cause funded by the thrift store!
Did ya ever think about closing the loop in charitable giving? It’s good for your finances and good for the environment. Yet it’s oftentimes very misunderstood.
Decluttering & Donating Household Items To Thrift Stores
So you’ve made a nice donation of household goods to that thrift store. That’s awesome! It removes extra “Stuff” from our homes and allows someone else to enjoy those things that we no longer use.
The best part of this of course is that the money made from the thrift shop’s sale of our goods furthers a good cause we believe in.
But there’s a stigma with shopping in thrift stores that I feel I must address.
Thrift Store Shopping Not Only For The Needy
Many well-meaning people think that since thrift store goods are “donated to charity” that those goods are earmarked to go to the underprivileged.
And I think in some cases that may be true. But think about how a thrift store operates for a moment. How do you close the loop?
How Your Favorite Charities Are Funded
For most charities that run a thrift store, your household donations don’t do the organization you’re trying to support any good.
It’s the SALE of those items and the money made from your donated goods that funds the organization.
Shopping at those very same thrift stores that you want to support is what actually benefits them. It closes the loop of your charitable-giving.
I feel good about buying clothes and household goods at charitable thrift stores. So I close the loop by buying there whenever possible.
Of course there are certain things that for me are only purchased new but that list is actually pretty small.
From thrift store I’ve purchased
… and more!
Think Thrift Store Purchases First
I asked RancherMan to build me a large mirror framed with rustic wood from our 1880’s barn. But I already knew I would not be purchasing the actual large mirror part new.
We bought an old beat-up dresser mirror from a charitable thrift store at a very reasonable price.
It didn’t matter that the wood frame was beat up – we’d be covering that anyway. We simply needed a large mirror with a flat wood frame.
RancherMan then covered the frame with some of my 1880’s barn wood, a few of the old square nails from the barn and even embellished it with some of our 1882 Elwood barbed wire found on our property.
So the cost we paid for this mirror was tiny – especially compared to buying that large mirror new.
But by shopping at a thrift store the purchase of that old beat-up mirror means our money went to help an organization that I want to support.
And my rustic barn wood mirror turned out to be a beautiful and meaningful addition to our home.
What about you? Have you noticed a lack of understanding from friends and family about shopping at thrift stores?
Let’s get the word out and help some great causes!
Links Included In This Post:
- Quick & Easy Taco Seasoning Mix
- Decadent Chocolate Brownies
- Make Your Own Low-Fat Yogurt
- Homemade Pasta Recipe
- Rosemary Lavender Soap
- A Tour Of Our 1880’s barn
- Rustic Barn Wood Mirror
Other Posts About Reducing Household Waste
- How We Reduced Landfill Contributions
- I Love Mother Nature So I Recycle LESS!
- 7 Ways To Reduce Plastic In The Kitchen
- Ditch The Plastic! Using Glass In The Refrigerator
- Natural Air Freshener In Reusable Glass Jar
- Reducing Plastic In Personal Hygiene: Deodorant
- No More Plastic Razors – How To Use A Safety Razor
- Where Exactly Is ‘Away’?
- Replacing Plastic Wrap With Beeswax Wraps
- Repurposing Empty Coffee Containers
- Denim Repurposed Into Fun Crafts
- 5 Zero-Waste Products We Love
- Easily Reduce Or Eliminate Junkmail
- Making Your Own Pourable Sugar Jar
- Paper Napkins In A Paperless Kitchen
- Repurposing A Parmesan Cheese Lid
- Zero-Waste Hygiene
- Eliminate Plastic Produce Bags
- Natural Cleaning – Homemade Laundry Detergent
…and Many More
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