My family and anyone who knew me before kids would be shocked to hear me say that used baby clothes are the best. I have come quite a long way from the girl who was weirded out by wearing clothes that someone else had worn. And then to have my kids wear them? No way.
I have since obtained clothing for my kids in every possible way (other than stealing, I suppose), from new boutique items to hand me downs. For the first year, I only let my daughter wear new clothes. It wasn’t until I received two huge bags of gorgeous hand me downs from a neighbor, that I began to change my mind.
Why I Love Used Clothes
- They are broken in. My kids are sensitive to fabrics and used items tend to be a little softer and the seams looser from being previously worn and washed. The PJs are the best, super soft and no one cares if they are faded or have some stains.
- Kids need junky clothes. I didn’t realize how stressed I was about keeping the new clothes in good condition until I had them wear used clothing. I practically hovered over my daughter with stain remover in order to keep up.
- They are less expensive. Back to those money buttons of mine. I’ve found that even super-duper discounted new clothes were still more expensive than used clothes.
- A lot of kids’ clothes are barely worn, especially dress up clothes. This is an amazing deal because dressy clothes are typically the most expensive, and those items are rarely worn and typically well kept.
- Better for the environment. Used clothes still have so much life in them because young children grow so fast. It just feels less wasteful to reuse them.
- You can afford nicer clothes. Used brand and boutique items from established companies tend to hold up very well. You can buy them in excellent condition for much less than even “cheap” new clothes.
- Used clothes still have resale value. There is a huge market for used baby clothes. When I buy them right, I can sell some pieces for the same or potentially more money than I paid after my own kids wear them.
My Favorite Places to Buy Used (In Reverse)
#6 Thrift shops – I’ve only gotten a few really good finds at these, primarily because I don’t have the time or patience to pick through or go to multiple stores.
#5 Online thrift – I had a good experience buying from ThredUp, except the minimum for free shipping $79. Paying for shipping almost negates the deals. Good place to search for very specific items that you need or a brand that you want.
#4 eBay – There is a gigantic market for used baby clothes on eBay. Two downsides are that you do incur shipping costs, and that sellers occasionally do not have the same concept of what constitutes “excellent” condition. Usually, buyer has to pay for returns.
#3 Popup thrift shops – I went to my first of these this year and it was great. Way more organized than a regular thrift. You will pay slightly more than normal thrift because of the extra work it takes for them to host but well worth it. (Good for toys and equipment too.)
#2 Facebook Baby Clothes Groups – I love that you can buy in bulk, by size or season. You also get to see the items in person before purchasing. The pricing is only slightly above yard sales, but definitely less than thrift. I also join groups in wealthier areas outside of my area, make an offer on multiple items from one seller, and pay for shipping to my home.
#1 Yard Sales – My number 1 favorite place to buy is yard sales. I love that you can see the condition and buy only what you want. My best deal came from one particular yard sale where I purchased 3 years’ worth of clothing for my son. I negotiated the seller down to $150 for everything. A bunch of the items were new, so I sold them right away on eBay for $70.
I knew I was a used clothing convert when I set aside brand new items purchased for my son, and kept him in the used clothes. I feel so relieved when he stains or tears items that are used. I am not plagued by how much I paid for it. Hand me downs are definitely the cheapest, but I’d definitely search the yard sales for another jackpot like mine!
If you love this, share it with a new mama who’ll be buying truckloads of clothes in the future.