Fashion Trends

Op shopping: Celeb stylist Jules Sebastian reveals her best second-hand shopping tips

Shop up a storm without breaking the bank.

By Jess Pullar
They say "with a new wardrobe comes happiness" - and who are we to disagree?
That is, until you check your bank account and realise that splurge on ASOS might have gone a little bit too far.
But fear not, fashion fiends, there are options at play that will satisfy all your shopping cravings and do some good for the environment...
There's plenty of ways you can shop up a storm without breaking the bank. (Image: Getty)
Enter the humble second-hand store. Yes, they've been around for a while, but it's easy to gloss over them (quite literally) and opt for a cheeky window-shop-turned-bank-breaking-shopping-extravaganza at Zara or H&M.
Now, as more people become aware of the impacts of fast fashion, second-hand stores are getting a refreshed lease on life.
And Australians are getting behind it, with stylish celebrities like Jules Sebastian endorsing the economical shopping option.
Now To Love caught up with Jules at Newtown's Vinnies where she proved how easy it really is to put together an outfit from your local second hand store that looks brand-new.
"The thing I love about shopping at Vinnies is that when you are done with your clothing, you can drop off your pre-loved goods so that somebody else can take it home so they can love it," she said.
"Then, you can come and scrounge around in somebody else's wardrobe, and the cycle just continues."
Jules Sebastian is a big advocate for op shopping. (Image: Instagram / @julessebastian)

Why shop second-hand?

With a consistent rise in fast fashion doing more harm than good when it comes to social and environmental impacts, there's no better time to check your shopping habits.
We don't say that lightly - the fashion industry now accounts for 2% of global Gross Domestic Product, one of the biggest in the world, and that means its impacts on people and the environment is all-the-more real.
What's more, according to statistics from The University of Queensland, people now consume around 80 billion new pieces of clothing each year, which is a shocking 400 per cent increase more than what we consumed two decades ago.
And while we're certainly buying a heck of a lot more clothing than we previously did, the statistics show the average UK shopper only wears 70 per cent of their wardrobe.
We'll just let that alarming fact sink in for a minute...
WATCH: We asked op-shop pros: What is your favourite thing in the shop? Story continues after video...
With that knowledge at hand, there's undoubtedly been an increase in consumer awareness for waste.
"This idea of fast fashion is slowly going out of fashion, and taking home something to love from somebody else's wardrobe so that recycling keeps on going is good for the environment - and the clothing lives on!" Jules said.

How to find an op shop bargain

While op shopping can definitely be a hit-or-miss, its absolutely possible to find a killer outfit at your local Vinnies.
Jules explained that the trick is to find your statement piece, and then pair it with a basic.
Going by the racks and racks of plain white teeS, jeans and sweats available at many op shops - there's plenty of options out there - and they won't cost you more than $10 in most places!
As for styles - second hand stores are often categorised by colour, which can be super helpful when it comes to matching up an outfit for an occasion.
When you're riffling through the options, ensure you have the right colours you're after top of mind - it'll make your search a lot quicker!
There's something for everyone when it comes to op shopping. (Image: Getty)
And in saying that, it's also important to remember that op shopping can take time. And a lot of it.
Yes, there might be a hundred things you wouldn't be seen dead in, but amongst racks, there's guaranteed to be one thing that's perfect for you.
So just keep at it - you'll undoubtedly find a diamond amongst the rough.
Jules Sebastian is supporting the release of Bohemian Rhapsody on DVD in partnership with Vinnies - encouraging shoppers to take home a second hand retro-inspired outfit as something to love for years to come.