The Ethics of Thrift Store Shopping

The Ethics of Thrift Store Shopping

Here at Le Prix, we care about people, our community, and the planet. It’s part of what drives us. This is because we want to make clothing accessible through second hand clothing and help our health and the planet through carrying products that are created ethically, sustainably, and with ingredients that are good for us. 

We want everyone to feel like thrift shopping is a positive experience and a part of their self-care values. 

When it comes to thrifting, what do you need to know? Why do it? What are the benefits? 

Here are points on the ethics of thrifting. 

#1 –Switching to thrifting means you can purchase fast fashion brands (we understand you love them!) and reduce your contribution to fast fashion in the process.

Making clothing, especially in the fast fashion world, produces immense amounts of emissions. Fast fashion is also notorious for producing low quality garments, partially in order to keep up with the latest trends, which can change very quickly. This can also contribute to ethical concerns around the working conditions in many of the factories. 

For what it’s worth, some brands are trying to keep up with their customers increased awareness of environmental impacts of fashion, and the problems with human rights and working conditions in their factories, and, in response, they are actively working to improve these conditions and measures. 

Here are 4 articles to learn more about the issues within fast fashion:


#2 – Thrifting means you can pick out items that are your style and pick pieces that are more timeless. 

Having your own unique style means that you can get pieces that will last you longer, and help to reduce waste and emissions. It doesn’t mean that you can never buy something trendy though; you can! And by focusing on having a capsule wardrobe made up of your own style, you’re making a difference by purchasing fewer things just because they’re on trend. What many of us do is focus on trends that fit into our wardrobes longer term.

If you're not sure what your style is, or you want to update your style, Robyn (Le Prix's owner!) is an amazing stylist who can help you with your wardrobe and picking out new pieces.

Not sure if you need a stylist? Read this page on our website to determine if it’s the right fit for you. 

#3 – Even if you started because it’s trendy, it’s still moving in the right direction, and sharing your purchases on social media can lead to more people taking up thrifting. 

Thrifting, itself, has become a trend that a lot of people like to promote on social media. While this might have a few cons (e.g., still buying more than you need), we overall find that it is beneficial. Thrifting, even if it’s because it’s the trendy thing to do, and then sharing about your purchases

#4 – Supporting a local thrift store (hi, it’s us, Le Prix!), you are supporting a local female-owned business that cares about affordable pricing, the community, and accessibility. 

It is a concern that some have that people are going to places like Goodwill and then reselling the stuff at a higher price on bigger thrift websites. It’s hard to know how often this happens, or how prevalent it is, but it is valid to be concerned about the impacts of marginalized people living on lower incomes. 

By supporting Le Prix, you know that you’re shopping at a place that has ensured that we are running ethically and sustainably. For example, we carry a wide range of brands, which means that we’re able to offer a wide range of price points to suit different budgets. We repair things as needed, we sell products like the clothing brush to get fur or fuzz off your clothing, or the knit repair device that allows you to put an errant stitch back into place. 

Links to referenced products on our website:


#5 – Thrifting at Le Prix means that you are helping divert textile waste in landfills.

According to a Scientific American Article, the first one linked below “Americans chucked more than 21 billion pounds of clothing and other textiles into landfills in 2015”. They asserted that extending the life of clothing can help to reduce CO2 emissions, although standardization in how this is recorded will help to narrow down the exact amount that emissions lower by. 

At Le Prix, we weigh purchases and record the weight, as this lets us show how much clothing is being diverted from landfills at the store. By purchasing second hand, you’re helping to reduce the amount of water, fertilizer, and emissions released in making clothes. You’re also helping to reduce the amount of stuff that ends up in landfills. Finally, it is helping to put pressure on brands that produce clothing to change their practices to be more sustainable. 


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