The Single Most Important Characteristic to Successfully Shop at the Goodwill Bins


The Goodwill Clearance Center. You either love it, hate it, or still haven’t uncovered the guts to give it a try.

As a lifelong thrift store shopper, I’ve learned to navigate my way through second hand items. Whether it’s shopping for them, styling them, or most recently, reselling them. Thrifting plays a big role in my life.

While I wouldn’t necessarily consider myself an expert, I do think I’m knowledgeable enough to guide others through what could be an intimidating process. Recently I’ve received numerous messages regarding shopping Goodwill by the pound.

I can talk about the bins for days, but today I wanted to focus on what I believe to be the most important trait to successfully shop at the Goodwill Clearance Center.

While gloves, hand sanitizer, and a huge IKEA bag can all be helpful, nothing will get you through the overwhelm like an OPEN MIND!

Sounds silly, huh? Well, I can’t tell you how many DM’s I’ve received telling me how LUCKY I am, because they’ve NEVER found anything near as cute as I did.

I hate to break it to you, but shopping (of any sort) has nothing to do with luck and everything to do with your vision. Whether you’re shopping to make tonight’s dinner, your new car, or a new wardrobe, having a vision is crucial. The only difference between shopping at a retailer vs an outlet is the availability of certain products. This is where an open mind comes in handy.

There is no rhyme or reason to what items are places into each bin. Men’s, women’s, tops, bottoms, and accessories are all thrown into a specific bin for bargain hunters to go through. This leaves shoppers with the responsibility to go through the hundreds of items in each giant bin and shop for what they find worthy.

I think I leave the bins with dozens of pounds worth of clothing and accessories because I’m open to the possibilities of unique pieces. They may not be my size, favorite color, or even personal style, but that doesn’t mean it wouldn’t be perfect on someone else.

This is why you’ll also find that the majority (I say at least 90 percent) of shoppers at the clearance center are resellers. You’re more likely to find items if your mind is open and your ranges are wide.