We live in a society focused on consumerism and convenience. People throw things away without thinking twice. The gifts we give can be seen as a way of showing how much you love someone by how expensive the item was. This all needs to change. We have to stop with the linear economy and move to a more circular model which means reusing items and keeping things that still have lots of life left in circulation instead of putting them in the landfill.
How do we start making it ok to gift a secondhand item? Giving vintage and antique items is ok so why not other types of secondhand goods? Kids clothes, toys, books and gadgets usually get used for a short time as kids grow and develop so these items have SO much life left in them. Many kid items you find at a thrift or consignment store look practically new! Plus secondhand items will be a reduced price so you might be able to grab that high end item that normally wouldn't fit in your gift buying budget!
So how do we start normalizing this process? Start with you. On your next invitation to your child's party include a line that says something like "if you plan to get a gift for *child's name* please consider shopping secondhand to help our planet" This gives guests permission to shop secondhand and might have them start thinking this way for their own events.
Another thing we can do is start this among family at the holidays. Maybe do a secret Santa where gifts must be secondhand in someway. Used items can be repainted or refurbished and you could even end up with a more thoughtful gift than if you had just purchased something from the store.
Where should we look for secondhand gifts? There are tons of thrift and consignment stores in every city but online secondhand shopping has grown a lot recently too. Instagram accounts specifically made to sell secondhand goods are all over the place now - just search your city and secondhand and you'll likely find some. Facebook Marketplace and Buy & Sell groups are also a great way to find used items - plus you can search easily on there without having to rummage through a store.
I hope this article gets you thinking about ways we can normalize secondhand gifts and opens your eyes to the possibility that this could be the way of the future instead of buying a bunch of new junk on Amazon.