Sanitary Secondhand Shopping

Recent thrifty finds: houndstooth pants, black clutch, J.Crew sweater, J.Crew wool skirt (new with tags for $5), perfect fit of skinny jeans, and red button skirt. Total was $20.

Let's chat a bit about sanitary secondhand shopping. It is something I know holds many people back from secondhand goodies, so I'm hoping my routine may help to quell those germ nightmares. When I purchase something, I ALWAYS wash it when I get home or if it needs to be dry cleaned, drop it off for a deep cleaning. Once dry, I take a good whiff--I love buying Grandma's sweaters, but I don't want to smell like Grandma! If there is still a little thrift stench, I use a tablespoon of Borax mixed with my usual detergent and give it another wash. Heavy fabrics like wool usually take a few washes to get rid of any smells so I also spritz a bit of a linen spray on them in between each wash.
In regards to shoes, if the material allows, I wiped it down with a little rubbing alcohol inside and outside of the shoe. If it is suede or something else, I use the Ugg Cleaner and/or spray the inside and outside with Lysol disinfectant spray. I NEVER buy a shoe that is not in pristine condition or smells. There are many tricks to remove shoe odor (black tea bags works best) but it just grosses me out too much if a shoe smells. Can't be a good sign. 
In regards to jewelry, a watered down version of a rubbing alcohol wipe works well, but be careful not to use too much, as it can discolor some metals. I never buy earrings second hand, as I rarely wear any besides my studs anyhow. If you do, dip backings and post in rubbing alcohol.
So, hopefully, this helps to shed any germaphobe fears. It takes a lot, I know, but when I see a J.Crew wool skirt new with tags, for $5, my paranoia vanishes. We all have our motives....


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