After spending countless years being a slave to fast fashion and consumerism, I read more and more about what it was doing to the planet and wanted to make a change. So, in 2021, I made a conscious decision to reassess my relationship with it.
At the same time, I’d noticed how fast fashion was making me lose my sense of style. Everything I’d previously bought was trend-led, which caused me to struggle when creating outfits. So, I started to build a capsule wardrobe and since then my style has changed completely.
Now I proudly re-wear my clothes all the time – and, in a bid to continue being a sustainable girly, I’m always on the hunt for second-hand clothes.
Not only is it helping the planet, but I find vintage clothes have more character. I still buy a few pieces from fast-fashion brands every now and then (because I’m not made of money) but my priority is to shop less and be more intentional when I do so.
As a way of trying to cultivate my style and find new pieces, I religiously use TikTok to help me search for second-hand goodies. And as I was doing my usual scrolling one day, I saw a user talk about her new favourite app for second-hand clothes called: finds.world.
She described it as a video app and my growing excitement turned into fascination. So, of course, I downloaded it.
What’s it all about?
It looks just like TikTok but specifically for clothes. And honestly, it feels like the dream destination for any Gen Z fashion lover.
After speaking to Jemma Stacey, CEO and co-founder of FINDS, I realised that the video element was an intentional decision. Stacey tells HuffPost UK they built their platform with a Gen Z audience in mind: “How they shop, consume content and get inspired is through video content.”
I spent what felt like an hour exploring the app, its users, and more importantly the clothes. And I couldn’t resist making a purchase – a gorgeous Save The Queen vintage dress.
Once the dress caught my attention I knew it had to be mine – a knee-length dress in varying shades of green and blue with a striking series of patterns, it’s very light-weight, making it the perfect summer shift.
It also reminds me of the 90s, which is the epitome of my style right now – and it looks as good as new, which is fantastic considering it was only £60.
It’s hard to find clothes that feel unique in the current landscape of fashion. Everything feels and looks the same which is why I love finding vintage pieces like this.
I’m a big fan of second-hand clothing apps like Vinted and Depop but sometimes it’s difficult to picture yourself in a vintage item by just looking at a picture. Especially since buying second-hand clothes can be so hit or miss.
This is where video listings change the game. As Stacey says: “Video listings offer a more transparent and inspiring way of buying and selling vintage and secondhand clothes.
“You can see the fit, hang of the fabric and highlight any wear and tear or flaws. You can also find styling inspiration, the same as you would from an OOTD or styling video on social media, or just seeing someone on the street who looks amazing – except you can buy what they’re wearing straight away!” she adds.
That’s something that I immediately liked about the app. As someone who’s on the taller side, I avoid buying trousers or skirts for fear the items will be too short. With FINDS, I was able to see a realistic depiction of how an item would actually look.
Another thing that makes the app so fun is the use of music. Each page or video plays a song in the background, similar to TikTok. However, at points, I did feel like I was seeing very similar clothes from different users. But I’d put this down to the app being quite new.
It feels like a community of second-hand lovers, which Stacey agrees with. “FINDS is truly social and community-led, with Livestream shopping enabling our sellers and creators to connect and interact with buyers via live video functionality,” she adds.
She emphasises the fact that secondhand and circular fashion is not a fad or a trend – it’s essential and non-negotiable.
“Fashion production makes up 10% of humanity’s carbon emissions, dries up water sources, and pollutes rivers and streams. What’s more, 85% of all textiles go to landfill each year (UNECE, 2018), so we just don’t need any ‘new’ clothing,” Stacey shares.
“The secondhand clothing market is set to be twice the size of fast fashion by 2030, so it’s most definitely here to stay and we plan on FINDS playing a big part in that change!” she adds.
In a world where fast-fashion rules, FINDS is showing the Gen Z generation how cool and fun vintage shopping can be. I can’t wait to see the app grow and have the opportunity to buy more pieces that I can fall in love with.