do your wardrobe a favor

I live for it, I love it, I wear it - and I've introduced many of you (that I know personally) to it. But now I want to talk about it publicly. It being - THE THRIFT!

I have no problem or shame in humbly saying that I'm fly ass fuck. LoL! Wait, can you be humble and make such a statement? Hmmm...who knows? Anyway, I'm often complimented on what I'm wearing and the way I put it all together. It's just a beautiful mess in my mind. What most people don't know, however, is even though my wardrobe is currently ridiculous, I don't spend a lot of money on clothes. Since the time I was a little boy, my mother always taught me to be a smart shopper. I never was the type of person to run to the most popular store in the mall to grab anything you could find 100 people wearing at any given time. Even when my style was more "urban" I would frequent Marshall's, Ross and TJ Maxx.

Sometime in high school when my style started to evolve and the whole vintage movement emerged, a great friend of mine introduced me to thrift shopping. At first, it was a little off-putting, as it may be to many of you. Whenever I passed a Goodwill or Salvation Army, I had this stigma that those types of places were for homeless people. Needless to say I was dead wrong. It was/is actually a diamond in the rough.

I love the current state of fashion because I feel like almost anything goes. Just as long as you give an outfit some thought and be somewhat forward thinking, you can pretty much do what you want. Thrifting is SO conducive to that.

I visit some of my favorite thrift stores on a weekly basis and always leave with at least 5 pieces and never spend more than $20.

But in order to be a successful thrifter, it takes patience. You must have patience. The thrift is nothing like shopping in the mall or at a department store. Nothing is neatly organized and sales reps are not going to help you find item A in a size B. They're often a mess. And the closest thing you can come to any organization is the categories - shirts, vests, jackets, pants, and suits. That's about it.

Everything is second hand, but if you can look past that and you have a good eye, the thrift can be extremely rewarding - as evident by my closet.

Below are all the "ingredients" for a good thrifter.

First and foremost, since I do thrift so often I keep a bottle of hand sanitizer in my car. Thrifting may be extremely rewarding, but the harsh reality is that you don't know where that shit has been.

These are pretty self-explanatory. Again, you don't know where the stuff you buy in the thrift has been so wash the hell out of it. I usually was the stuff twice! Haha!

Finally, find a good dry cleaner. A lot of the items you buy in the thrift can be machine washed, but a number of them can't. In the past few months, I've come up on some pretty awesome leather jackets and trench coats that I had to take in. And even though my cleaner is ridiculously expensive, it's worth every penny.