Shopping for pre-loved items are gaining popularity, since they give you “feel good” factor of contributing to a more sustainable, less wasteful world, and the opportunity to own high-quality items at a fraction of the original cost. Given the current environmental and economic climate, platforms have emerged to cater to those who want to shop for pre-loved items exclusively.
Here are 7 platforms that beginner bargain-hunters in Singapore can tap on to get started on their pre-loved shopping journey.
Source: Refash Facebook
Started off as a retail outlet in 2015 by Aloysius Sng with the goal of reducing clothes wastage in Singapore, Refash has grown into an e-commerce platform for ladies to sell and buy preloved items, ranging from fast fashion clothing to designer handbags.
Besides having an online store, Refash has 9 outlets around Singapore where people can pick and choose their clothes, or to drop-off their pre-loved items for sale in exchange for store credits.
Carousell is smartphone and web-based marketplace for buying and selling items, especially second-hand goods. The app carries a wide range of items, from fashion accessories, clothes to furniture and even IT products.
The Singapore-based app allows users to purchase and sell goods as a consumer-to-consumer platform. Recently, many businesses have also turned to the app to sell their products and services.
Besides being a marketplace platform, Carousell has introduced “Carousell Groups”, allowing fellow users to buy and sell with friends and people who share similar interests.
If the idea of getting free food from others does not deter you, you can download OLIO app. Launched in 2015, OLIO is a smartphone and web-based platform that is used by many for food-sharing, and is aimed at helping to reduce food waste.
The app works by connecting those with surplus food to those who need them or wish to consume such food. According to the app, the food must be edible. It can be cooked or raw, sealed or opened, and users should not solicit for donations or ask for payment.
The app has since expanded to allow users to post any non-food items to be given away.
#4 Salvation Army Family Stores
Source: The Salvation Army
Established in Singapore since 1935, The Salvation Army is committed to help the less fortunate and marginalized through its community initiatives and social services. One of such service is their Family Stores.
Operating under Red Shield Industries, the social enterprise arm of The Salvation Army, their Family Stores have been well-received by many Singaporeans. Many of their donations come from both the community and corporate. With a mix of new and used items on sale, you can expect to find something of your choice at the most competitive price.
It currently has five stores in Singapore, with the biggest branch at Bukit Timah. Also, it has an online shop that is occasionally updated with products in their collection for sale.
In addition, every dollar you spend at the thrift store will go towards supporting The Salvation Army’s project and initiatives for the poor.
#5 SSVP Shop
Source: SSVP Shop
Similar to The Salvation Army Family Store, the SSVP Shop is a social enterprise established in 2019 by the Society of Saint Vincent De Paul (SSVP), a lay Catholic organisation with beginnings in France.
Their retail outlet, which is located in Geylang and manned by volunteers, carries an assortment of clothes and accessories at competitive prices. Every dollar spent at the shop will go towards SSPV’s effort in reaching out to the poor and marginalised, through its befriending programmes.
#6 MINDS Shop
Source: MINDS Shop
Established by the Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore in 2012, the MINDS Shop serves not only as a destination for bargain hunters. The shop is also a platform for its trainees to get pre-vocational training in retail and customer service, where they will receive training on the day-to-day operations of managing a store, and allowing them to produce goods out of unwanted items.
If you have the chance to visit the MINDS Shop for clothes, furniture or housewares, be ready to be served by friendly and professionally trained MINDS beneficiaries.
#7 Something Old, Something New
Source: Something Old Something New Facebook
Founded by the Singapore Anglican Community Services, the social enterprise sells pre-loved items at competitive prices, and provides a platform for beneficiaries to acquire skills like MINDS Shop.
The beneficiaries include persons who are recovering from mental health issues, and they are equipped with retail and logistic skills, which help them to boost their employability. This in turn help them to secure employment in the retail sector, allowing them to learn how to live independently.
The shop carries a wide range of items, such as furniture, household goods, electronic devices and toys, and it welcomes donations from the public as well.