A mum has admitted that she saves thousands of pounds by purchasing many of her Christmas gifts second hand. As you can see from the video below, second-hand gifts would be an absolute joy to some folks.
Whilst some might recoil at the very suggestion, when you think about it there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that... Is there?
Times are hard and things are expensive, so why not pick something up on the second-hand market?
That’s even before we get to the environmental benefits of reusing and recycling things that might otherwise have ended up in a skip or in landfill.
There’s literally no downside to this, especially as it’s supposed to be about the thought in the first place.
Jess and her husband Davey are firm believers that second-hand doesn’t necessarily mean bad quality, and they’re experts in the field, so they should know.
She’s well ahead of planning for this festive season, having already picked up several gifts, including an £8 necklace that would have cost £30 if she’d bought it new.
In other years she’s managed to get an £80 bag for just a tenner, a £40 scarf for £12, and – perhaps most impressively – a wrought iron bed for £400 that would otherwise have set her back £1,200.
There are loads of examples, but still some people won’t let go of their insistence that everything be brand new.
Jess explained: "Some people will always have something against second-hand items, but some things don't carry that ‘used’ stigma.
"For example, vintage jewellery or handbags always go down a treat at Christmas!"
For Jess, this is more than just a hobby – she actually runs an online second-hand store called Used and Loved with her husband.
At the minute, there’s loads of stuff on there that they’ve discovered together offered at prices that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to get them for.
Now, she wants to share a few tips with would-be charity shop magpies, explaining that the first step is simply to get started early.
"You can’t just nip into town on Christmas Eve and do a last-minute scramble, second-hand shopping takes time,” she continued.
"Allow for deliveries and the Christmas rush too."
Furthermore, follow your gut feeling about something.
Jess said: "The beauty of used items is they are one of a kind - buy it before someone else does!"
The most important thing to remember is that second-hand items are often better than a budget version of something cheaper bought new.
Having belonged to someone else first isn’t some sort of embarrassment whatsoever.
If anything, it’s an endorsement.
She added: "When you buy a new product you're paying for it to be manufactured, often with plastic, and then shipped all the way from places like China.
"Many new items are designed to break within a few years and as they frequently can't be recycled so end up in landfill".
In case you know someone who is a bit snooty about these things, she also believes that you can win them around with impressive or thoughtful packaging.
She explained: "If it’s wrapped nicely, it can help give a good impression of the quality of the item.
"You can buy vintage fabric and wrap the gifts using the gorgeous Furoshiki method.
"You could even shop around and re-kindle your gift with some second-hand original packaging."
Anyway, with money set to be tight for most this Christmas and beyond, you could do worse than to buy second hand – your wallet and the planet will thank you for it.
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