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There are some things you shouldn’t buy from a thrift store. While we all love a good deal, I recommend you skip the following:


I have seen mattresses in a number of thrift stores. While they may look clean I wouldn’t encourage buying them second hand. I will note that there are some state laws that require mattresses to undergo a certain cleaning process if they are being sold used.

Baby Furniture
I would never suggest buying cribs, car seats or any essential baby related furniture from a thrift store. Safety laws change often and while you might save money, the risk isn’t worth it.


Makeup is also a no-no. These products are going on your skin and if you don’t know the origin of a product I wouldn’t trust it. Be beautiful, but be safe.

Also on my list? Shoes and underwear. What things would you NEVER buy from a thrift store?


Design Inspiration

107 Responses

  1. Conni says:

    I wouldn't buy anything upholstered, like a sofa. You never know what might be living inside or what those stains came from. Eeww. I would buy, and have bought, a chair where the seat is upholstered because I was able to take that off and change it.

    • linda says:

      take a black light with you to shine over the furniture and you can see any hidden spots/stains before you would consider buying

  2. deb says:

    what about underwear?

  3. Laura says:

    Underwear…ewwwwww!!! Thats wear i draw the line! quite happy about almost everything else, I lived in a drawer as a newborn, mom was a great thifter,lol

    • Grandma Carol says:

      Must have been common during the 40's and 50's as a dresser drawer was my first bed too!!!! My dad always joked that when I cried to much my Mom just shut the drawer!

  4. Grace says:

    I use thrift store baby changing table for my dog. I place it in front of our living room window so he can look outside (cut down legs to the right height) for the window)

  5. AMeyers says:

    OMG why would there be underwear at a thrift store. Gross. As said before common sense is a good thing. If it can hold bugs or germs it probably does. Have you ever seen an old mattress removed. They weigh twice as much as they do new. Any ideas why? Dead skin cells thats why. Yuck yuck yuck.

    • Diane GUmble says:

      Yes , underwear is available at the Mennonite Re-Uzit stores here in PA!!!

    • S Boyce says:

      Here where I live in Northeastern Colorado they sell underwear and bras at the thrift store

    • FineTexan says:

      I have given away new underwear that I bought that did not fit. If it looks unworn it probably is. Wash it in hot water. After all you sit on upholstered chairs in offices and public places that are probably never cleaned and sanitized. Use your senses and good sense. It is is not that easy to catch diseases believe it or not.

  6. Jill says:

    Car seats (safety laws change) and helmets (if it's taken a hit, it should be tossed, and you can't always tell if it's taken a hit).

  7. Kellyruss5 says:

    I would not buy anything that cannot be easily washed! Bed Bugs are reaching epidemic proportions so if I do buy it gets bagged tightly in plastic and it doesn't come in the house until it goes right into the washing machine!

  8. Cora says:

    Bathroom rugs, toilet brushes or toilet seats (yes I have seen them at thrift stores!!!!)

  9. Juliep says:

    I would add to the list:
    ~underwear, I have seen thong underwear! can you imagine? YUK
    ~masks that cover your nose and mouth
    ~combs and brushes

  10. Misty says:


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