I like designer brands but not designer prices
Fast fashion has become a very relevant issue in the past year. If you don’t know what fast fashion is its inexpensive clothing that is produced rapidly by mass-market retailers, it follows the current trends and if any of you follow fashion you’ll know that the current trends are forever changing which means these stores are constantly producing new fashion pieces that will probably not be desirable the next month. Lots of style icons and influencers promote fast fashion but there are are a community of people in the fashion industry who don’t. They are buying timeless and basic pieces that they can always wear rather than buying into fast fashion and most importantly if they do want to try some fast fashion options they’re getting it second hand!
Personally, I don’t support fast fashion stores and I made this decision before I even knew what it was! I have always been a girl that likes a good bargain, I love getting things on sale and hunting around. This is why I love thrift and second-hand stores. My love for second-hand things began in Australia with my grandma, we would go to the Salvation Army and see what treasures we could find and when I moved to Hungary I started to do the same!
I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on clothes for the summer and so I went to a second-hand store called Hada. The Hada I go to in particular is on the outskirt of Pest city centre in a warehouse, there are other Hada stores throughout the city but they don’t have the same quantity and variety of clothes as the big one. You buy clothes by the kilo from this store which means you can buy a lot of things at a very low cost. It’s safe to say that I’ve been back there a lot since and have picked up some pretty cool items to add to my wardrobe. The brands vary from Primark, H&M, Bershka to &OtherStories, Zara, Calvin Klein, Hollister and Ralph Lauren. You’d be very surprised at what you can find.
Another hidden gem of a thrift shop is Szia Plus, located in Buda right down the road from Liberty Bridge. The store doesn’t look like much from the outside but as soon as you walk through the door you are greeted by quirky patterned dresses, hanging lanterns and a wall covered in books. The prices are very good in this store and I like it because it’s a little left of centre and you can pick up some very unique items and brands. This thrift store has a little twist though if you walk through a beige curtain on the right side of the store you are transported to a creative hub. It's pretty much a store within a store, the Szia Plus brand is a shop that promotes Hungarian designers and their work! I was lucky enough to pick up a cool ring but there are lots of other cool things to look through like tote bags, clothes, jewellery, iron-on patches and cute stationary items.
I have even learnt a new skill while second-hand shopping, negotiating. My favourite thrift shop in Budapest is called Baptista, the cool thing about this store is that nothing has a price and you have to say what you want to pay and you can negotiate with the salesperson why you want to pay that much which can be quite fun (they’ve never told me that I offered to little for something they mostly tell me that I’ve offered too much). This store has very random things and you never know what you’re going to find as they are constantly changing everything up. My boyfriend and I have bought board games, a handbag, phone chargers, clothing and some new toys for our puppy! They also donate the money to the less fortunate in Hungary and clothes and accessories that don’t sell after a certain period of time are given to them as well which I think is such a great idea.
I got this skirt and blazer from Baptista!
My top tips when buying second hand
Brands aren’t the most important thing but usually, a more expensive brand has better quality products. Knowing your brands well means you can fly through the racks of clothing scouting out brands that you want to buy.
Something may be really cute and just happen to be in your size but make sure that it’s in good condition. There’s no real point in buying clothing just to throw it out when you realise there’s something wrong with it. Check for stains, makeup marks that won’t come out and if there are any tears.
Try it on!! Usually, in these stores, you have the option to try before you buy and I would definitely be doing this. There’s nothing worse than buying something and then finding out it doesn’t fit.
Don’t buy something just because it’s a “good brand” if the shirt doesn’t fit, you’re not going to wear it.
Get out of your comfort zone a little bit! Maybe there’s a style you’ve always wanted to try but haven’t wanted to splurge on seeing if you could rock it. Thrifting can lower that cost by ALOT and you never know punk rocker could be a good look for you.
I think there is a little bit of a stigma about buying clothes second hand, maybe people feel embarrassed about it or think it's below them to buy something that’s already been used. Personally, I think it's such a cool thing to be doing, it’s a form of recycling in a way and if you know what you’re looking for nobody would be any wiser in knowing it was pre-loved. Of course, I don’t buy everything second hand and there are some necessities that you should buy brand new. I have seen a lot more people talking about second-hand stores lately which is great and will hopefully inspire some people to look at them as a positive thing.
Drop by these stores if you’re in Budapest, I’m sure you’ll love them! If you know of any places that I should check out in your city please let me know!
Until next time
Here are the links to the three stores that I talked about:
Hada general website: https://www.hada.hu
Szia Plus: https://www.facebook.com/SZIA.adomanybolt/