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Today’s nifty thrifty lesson:


Shopping at Goodwill yields excellent finds in the jeans department, including designer jeans at around $8.  When you walk in to a store it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the denim section.  My tricks will help you cut your time and find the best jeans.

Trick #1 – memorize the back pockets.  It might sound ridiculous but it really helps. Every brand has a stitch that they almost always use on their back pockets. Checking out the pockets is much easier and faster than checking each tag to see what brand they are.

Trick #2 – shop backwards.  Also ridiculous sounding, but positioning yourself facing the jeans from their backs will allow you to see the stitching on the pockets.  This way you can flip through quickly till you see a pocket (aka brand) that you like.

Trick #3 – try lots of sizes.  Most people wear different sizes in different brands, and when you shop in a place like Goodwill you’re getting a wide variety of brands.  Because of this you’re not going tobe just a 28 or just a 31.  Always grab several sizes because you’re more likely to find one that fits.  I actually found a pair of jeans by 7 for all mankind that was missing the size tag, but when I tried them on they fit perfectly!

Trick #4 – buy if they’re too long.  Since you’re saving so much money by buying your jeans at Goodwill, you’ll have plenty left over to get them altered. Don’t pass up that pair just because they’re long…you’ll keep searching and waste hours trying to find a pair as good. Just get them hemmed.

Trick #5 – check for rips, stains, etc.  Since Goodwill is a charity store you shouldn’t do this here, but at other places like Plato’s Closet feel free to ask for a discount if jeans have rips, faulty stitching, missing buttons, or the hems are badly worn. Plus, you can avoid bringing home a pair you think are great and realizing that they’ve got a big ol’ rip in the crotch.

While shopping for jeans anywhere can be overwhelming, at Goodwill and other thrift stores it doesn’t have to be.  Follow these tricks and you’ll be well on your way to a great denim collection for next to nothing.  Found a great pair of jeans somewhere? Share below!