Tutorial: How to wash thrift store clothes

A lot of folks are grossed out by the idea of second hand clothing because they think about the fact that other people have worn the items.

But I have shown you in past posts that often times I find new items with the tags on - and the other reality that clothes have been donated by their original owners because they were hardly worn, if worn at all. Most thrift items are the stuff from the back of folks closets.

With that, there is the undeniable smell the seems to be embedded in thrifted clothes. In my mind it's the accumulation of all the other “used” smells, as the items are stored and packed and shelved for days.

But whatever the reality is, the truth is there is that thrift store smell.

Well, here's my very simple solution on how to rid that stinky thrift store stench. It won't cost you anything more than your regular detergent. Extra soaking is NOT required. No bleach or non-detergent products need to be used. Other guides online suggest special products, harsh cleaning formulas like Lysol and other methods. But after years of trying gimmicky suggestions, I have found this simple solution.

1. After removing the tags, check out the manufacturer's washing instructions.
    A. If it is a fabric that you are familiar with and know how to manually wash 
    and handle yourself, then go ahead and throw it in the general thrift wash.

    B. But if it is fabric that you don't know how to handle (i.e. silk, suede, 

    wool), I recommend that you get it dry cleaned. (I have a horror story about 
    throwing a lovely 100% wool sweater in the washer and dryer and it shrunk to 
    doll size!)
2. Pre-treat any stains with your stain remover. Let it soak, if necessary.
3. Turn clothes inside-out, to protect the “good” side from stains that could leak in wash, such as from dyes.
4. Wash on heavy cycle. Wash a second time, if necessary.
5. Dry as normal.
That is literally it!
Believe me - I've been thrift shopping for literally 14 years. This method will bring your newly acquired second hand clothes back to life, and leave no trace of the thrift store.

WATCH MY How-to video:

So what do you think about this method of washing second hand clothing?


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