How Consignment Stores are Shaping the Future of Sustainable Shopping

Consignment & Thrift Shopping

Consignment stores are a beacon of hope for shoppers looking for high-quality fashion with much less consumption and waste. Consignment offers a unique, exciting way to participate in sustainable shopping while also indulging in the thrill of discovering hidden treasures you won’t find at big box stores. As sustainability becomes the future of fashion, consignment stores are pulling their weight to revolutionize the way we think about trends and promote conscious consumerism.

Consignment stores have been around for decades, but they’ve experienced a resurgence in popularity in recent years. The consignment and thrift store “trend” can be attributed to the growing awareness of environmental issues, the desire for more unique and vintage pieces, the interest in more affordable designer fashion, and the increasing popularity of the circular economy. Let’s look at how these benefits of consignment shopping are helping to shape the future of sustainable fashion.

Recommended read: 5 Ways shopping and selling on consignment is good for the earth

Sustainable fashion on a budget

Many brands are trying to promote sustainable fashion in an unsustainable industry. H&M – one of the world’s most wasteful fast fashion retailers – promotes sustainability with their recycling program while at the same time mass-producing low-quality clothes with chemicals and dyes that end up in the environment. Many fast fashion companies like Shein and Zara rely on low-quality materials, excessive waste, and exploitative labor practices to keep their costs low – even while they market their “sustainability.” Learn more about this kind of greenwashing in the fashion industry here.

Many conscious consumers have started looking for an easier, more reliable way to “shop clean and green.” That’s where consignment comes in. Consignment stores are the perfect place to access high-quality designer goods while embracing sustainable fashion. Shopping on consignment is an easy way to reduce waste because you’re buying preloved items, lessening the need for new manufacturing and diverting clothing away from landfills.

Instead of discarding clothing after a few wears, consignment stores allow people to resell their gently used items. This kind of “second life” reduces the amount of clothing that ends up in the trash and minimizes the need for new production waste. By encouraging the reuse of clothes and accessories, consignment stores play a critical role in closing the fashion loop in a way that keeps perfectly good items in circulation. 

Check out these 7 trends in sustainable fashion.


Cost matters to today’s consumer. Several brands on the market are making waves in the fashion industry by dramatically improving their labor practices, manufacturing processes, and the eco-friendliness of the materials they use. Often, however, these brands are expensive; in a competitive fashion world, they have to increase their price tag to make up for the high costs of having more sustainable practices. Their costs translate to you – the consumer – as ultra-high prices.

On the flip side, fast fashion is appreciated primarily for its low cost to the consumer. But their low prices are a direct result of their unsustainable practices.

Consignment stores are the best of both worlds. Because the preloved items are gently used, the store can offer more affordable prices than new clothing from sustainable-oriented brands. This means consumers get access to high-quality goods at a fraction of their original price. Moreover, because consignment stores do not encourage the manufacturing of new goods, they are a naturally more sustainable option. This means you get a more affordable price without harming the environment.

High-quality sustainability 

Best yet, the pieces at consignment stores are often significantly higher quality than you can find in fast fashion stores. Many consignment stores, like Current Boutique, resell only high-end designer pieces. This is a massive upgrade from the low-quality, chemical-ridden clothes you’ll find at most fast fashion stores. You’re getting designer-worthy craftsmanship at an affordable price.

This level of quality is critical to the future of sustainability. Fast fashion clothes tend to start falling apart after a few wears, but designer clothes are made with fit, finish, and timelessness in mind. Today’s conscious consumer wants a capsule wardrobe she can wear for years to come. The longer you own your clothes, the fewer pieces that end up in landfills and the fewer pieces that need to be produced.

Building an eco-friendly community

Consignment stores are hubs of the community. Many consignment stores operate on a small business scale and contribute to the growth of the local economy. They connect with other small businesses, local artisans, and entrepreneurs to reach a wider audience. This kind of support extends beyond the fashion industry to have positive implications for various sectors in the community.  When a consignment store promotes the importance of sustainability, its partners often begin to aid in the fight for a more sustainable world too.

If you’ve ever been to Current Boutique, you know that we foster a sense of camaraderie among our shoppers. We bond with our customers over our mutual love of hot trends, unique finds, and sustainable fashion options. Our goal since 2007 has been to create a space for like-minded fashionistas to connect over style, fun, and conscious consumerism.

Want to get involved in sustainable fashion right now? Check out our Sustainable Closet Audit

Consignment stores are shaping the future of sustainable shopping

There are many reasons to shop at a consignment store, from discovering one-of-a-kind pieces to finding high-quality fashion at an affordable price. But consignment stores are more than just a fun place to shop and hang out. They play a crucial role in shaping the future of sustainable fashion. Consignment stores offer a sustainable alternative to traditional retail experiences by promoting conscious consumerism, extending the lifespan of clothes and accessories, fostering community engagement, and offering affordable, high-quality items. Consignment shops are the go-to destination for those seeking a more ethical and eco-friendly approach to fashion.

Embracing consignment shopping helps positively impact the planet without sacrificing style or breaking the bank. So, join the revolution, and start exploring the exciting world of consignment shopping right now with Current Boutique’s “just in” pieces!

Carmen Lopez, President & CEO


Hello Fashion Lovers! I've been in the fashion industry for over 15 years. I started Current Boutique with the desire to recycle amazing pre-loved designer gems for others to enjoy! I value quality, unique craftsmanship, sustainability & saving money. I am a fashion lover who is energized by the challenges and rewards of being an entrepreneur. I'm here to share tips on fashion, style, bargain shopping and business. I hope you enjoy!
XOXO, Carmen