5 Tips To Buy Vintage Clothing


There are a few reasons why you would want to buy vintage clothing. Firstly, fashion trends tend to repeat themselves, and there is nothing like wearing garms from the original era over high street retro style clothing. Plus, wearing vintage is better for the planet. Preloved clothing is a BIG trend now because it shows we are conscious of our carbon footprint. Also, buying vintage means you can find unique items that only you own, and there are so many amazing outfits out there that help you show your personality and style!

But, if you are new to buying vintage clothing, it can kind of be a bit confusing. What is a good deal? And what makes an outfit actually vintage, and not just vintage looking? You may want to shop vintage clothing online, and this can be even more baffling! So, what are our five top tips on buying vintage clothing?

Know The Era

First of all, knowing the era of clothing is super important. Online outlets will sometimes claim to be vintage, but stock clothes that have been recently made but are preowned. Vintage clothing is defined as clothes older than 20 years.

When shopping for vintage clothing, check out the era. Online stores will often have a description of the product and include the era when it was made. To be sure, you should fact-check the outfit before buying. Does it say the manufacturer in the description? When was this place actually making clothing?

Know What You Want

When we are shopping for vintage clothing both online and in-store, we run the risk of spending hours of our day trawling through item after item, not knowing what is worth buying and what isn’t. Of course, this can be super fun when we have the time to do this, but we often don’t!

So, before we start shopping for vintage, we should know what we are wanting to buy. Have you got an event coming up that you need a dress for? Perhaps you are needing a new jacket?

This means you can concentrate specifically on a type of clothing, minimizing the time-consuming searching through stores and clothes rails.

Know Your Style

Similarly, it is important to know your style! It can be tempting to purchase a beautiful 50s swing dress from an online vintage retailer that you happen to see when you first go on their site. But, if you rarely wear 50s garms, you may not actually wear the dress when you buy it.

Fashion mood boards are really fun and are super helpful when searching for vintage clothes! Find images that are like your style (or the style you are wishing to curate) and add them to a mood board. This will give you inspiration and guidance when shopping for vintage clothes.

Know Sizing Will Be Confusing

One of the greatest challenges when shopping vintage is the sizing. Sizing guides have changed so much over time, so just because you’re a size ten now does not mean you will be a size ten in 60s vintage clothing.

Thankfully, most vintage retailers adjust the sizing of the clothes and advertise them for the sizing that fits now, not the sizing that is on the label.

However, it is still useful to try the clothes on before you buy!

Know The Quality

Shopping for vintage means shopping for clothes that have been worn previously. This means you have to expect a little wear and tear. However, too much damage means that you will probably find it difficult to wear the garment.

If you are in a store, always thoroughly inspect the clothing for damage. Feel the fabric and look for any tears or stains. If you are shopping online, inspect the image of the clothing as best you can. A lot of online retailers will include any issues that the outfit has, but you can always message them to double-check!

Knowing the quality also means knowing the fabric of the garment. Most vintage clothing is made out of durable materials (there is a reason why they have lasted so long!). However, you should research the fabric before you buy to know its sustainability and strength.

Have Fun Finding Your Perfect Vintage Outfit

If you are new to vintage clothing, we hope that these five tips have given you confidence in shopping vintage. There are so many wonderful and unique garments out there, and there is nothing like finding a top-quality vintage piece that truly reflects who you are and your style.

Whether you are looking for a garish 80s shell suit or a sophisticated 60s paisley print dress, following these five tips is a sure-fire way of getting what you want from vintage clothing!

Written by Megan Taylor
Megan is a beauty expert who is passionate about all things makeup and glam! Her love for makeup has brought her to become a beauty pro at Glamour Garden Cosmetics.