Nothing ruins finding the perfect pair of vintage palazzo pants or 80s baseball jacket more than that dreaded vintage smell. Most of the donated clothes lived most of their figurative life in a closet and haven't been washed since Back to the Future was released.

Luckily, getting rid of the thrift smell is fairly easy!


Wash your thrift finds immediately and don't throw them on top of other laundry in your laundry basket. That's just a recipe to give your other laundry more unwanted smells.

Pre-soak your clothes in a bucket with lukewarm water and add 150g baking soda.

Baking soda draws the smell out of clothes by absorbing it, so this is a good way to get rid of the worst smell(s). Leave your thrifted piece in there for about 30 minutes.

Wash them straight after the pre-soak.

Don't delay drying your thrifted piece. Don't leave it in your washing machine after your load has finished washing. Damp clothes are the perfect environment for bacteria and mold. Leaving the load in the washing machine is what causes more unwanted smells.

Hang your clothes outside to dry or, if you live in an apartment like i do, let them dry near an open window. A fresh breeze of air does wonders to thrift finds!

Fabric spray is the cherry on top. Pre-soaking clothes right after purchase, washing them after a good 30 minutes and air-drying them eliminates the vintage smell. I like my clothes to smell fruity and fresh so I always treat my vintage finds with a gentle fabric spray after drying.

For me, these steps have always worked to get rid of that dreaded vintage smell.

What's your secret to washing thrift finds?

Dreaming about thrift shopping that perfect 90's mom jeans, a floral statement dress or vintage designer belt? Don't let your dreams be dreams. /Shia LaBeouf


Take it from someone who's been thrift shopping for over 5 years: by trial and error, I now have a pretty good idea of how to make thrifting shopping a walk in the park. If you always wanted to go thrifting but have no idea where to start, don't worry, I got you. Here's what you need to know.

Go with a pocketful of sunshine. In my opinion, thrift shopping only works if you're in a good mood. Dozens of barely organized racks of clothing will look like a fashion treasure chest instead of a burden you can't take on that moment.

Location is key. Thrift shops in richer neighborhoods tend to have more designer pieces while thrift shops in student districts have more one-of-a-kind items. Explore different locations to see where you score your favorite finds.

Don't skip anything. Look at the men's section, the nightwear section, the "put back" rack near the changing rooms... Honestly, I've found some of my favorite finds right where I didn't expect to find anything at all.

Don't look at the sizes. Sizes differ from brand to brand. In thrift shops, you tend to find a lot of vintage finds, too. Brands size differently now. Just try it on.

Look at the care label. Look where a piece is made and what it's made from. Usually, clothes made in developing countries are of lesser quality. If an item is made of linen, wool, viscose, cashmere, leather or a cotton/polyester blend with a higher percentage of polyester, it's more durable.

Turn your find inside-out. Explore the seams, corners. Check for pills, missing buttons, tears, any holes or loose threads.

Ignore price tags. Counter-intuitive, right? I know that checking price tags is a force of habit for most of us. For me, too. But trust me when I say to let this habit behind you while thrift shopping. This way you won't be tempted to buy something just because it's such a good deal. If your find fits your perfectly, look at the price and decide for yourself it it's worth it.

In doubt, ask yourself these 3 questions. 1) Price aside, would you buy this kind of find in a store that's not a thrift shop? If you were in the fitting room of Urban Outfitters or Zara, would you take this? 2) Is this piece something you can wear a lot? Is it work-approciate, suitable for the weather conditions you live in, etc. 3) How will you wear this piece? If I can think of at least 2 outfits of the top of my head, it's a go.

Find out when your thrift shops tends to restock. Most thrift shops restock during the week when there are less customers. If they restock tuesday morning, try to go tuesday around noon to get the first look at the new treasures.


Bon vivant based in Belgium 28 years brb, I'm thrifting always sipping coffee, making diy projects and capturing small joys on camera ✰ 

  • Black Instagram Icon