August 25, 2022
min read

How I convince my kids to shop preloved first

It’s never too early to teach them how to get the most for their money (and help save the planet while they’re at it).

Team Mercari

One thing I’m always trying to do as a parent is teach my kids good habits. Chewing with your mouth closed, turning off lights when you leave a room, all that good stuff. I also try to teach them the value of a dollar by shopping gently-used children’s clothes, toys, games, and more. But what about when they’re doing the shopping? Here are some ways I convince my kids that preloved is the way to go. 

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Leading by example

I’m pretty loud about my shopping adventures at thrift stores, yard sales, and of course with Mercari. Why shouldn’t I be? Taking any nonsensical shame out of my preloved game is the first step in teaching my kids it’s not only OK to avoid buying brand new things, it’s also pretty dang cool – as evidenced in my wardrobe that is filled with unique finds you can only score secondhand. Now when they pass by a thrift store, their interest is piqued because they know they might find something special. 

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Setting a budget

My middle child, who is math-phobic at times, is suddenly a master accountant when dealing with their own dollars and cents. They know exactly how many chores they have to do to earn a video game and they always know the exact amount in their piggy bank. There’s no better way to encourage your kids to stretch a dollar when they know it doesn’t grow on trees. And stretching a dollar is just one benefit of shopping preloved. Never hesitate to compare prices side by side and show them how easy it is to save. 

Image credit: Fly View Productions

Nurture their niche

Were you a collector as a kid? Me too! And so are my kids (they love manga and crystals while I was more of a pog enthusiast in my day). There’s just something about having your own special treasure trove that’s so magical. Being a collector and shopping preloved naturally go hand in hand since the best parts of a collection are rare and special. Let them know they can find almost anything relevant to their interests on Mercari from sellers all over the country. 

Encourage individuality 

Now I know not all kids grew up as high school punk rockers like I did, but sporting vintage or DIY fashions is something anyone can do in any style. There are so many unique, handmade pieces to find online and in stores. Or they can get creative and make their own. Maybe sign them up for sewing lessons to stitch their own creations from preloved clothes, like a customized vintage denim jacket. Sewing is a valuable life skill, after all. 

Whatever your kids are looking for this season, help them find it on Mercari first before hitting a packed, overpriced mall. You might even save the trip altogether. *fingers crossed*

Main image credit: ArtMarie