You want to hit the mid-season sales, but you realize that your favorite brands' prices are still too heavy on your budget. Why not go for a thrift shopping adventure instead? Ukay-ukays aren't uncommon in the Philippines. Besides, who doesn't love a good bargain?
Fashion is basically just a recycling of trends. With the return of trends from the 60's to the 90's, we can see that vintage looks rarely ever go out of style. A great way to test these out and to try to reinvent and modernize these trends is through thrift shopping.
You can get about 5 to 8 pieces at the price you would usually spend for one blouse from your favorite brands at the mall. Even with the cost of alterations, they still come out cheaper. Also, just because it's cheaper doesn't necessarily mean it's of lesser quality. With a combination of luck and skill, you can score lace, denim, silk, and a ton of branded pieces for a couple hundred pesos. Precisely because you get to buy more pieces than you usually would, it's a great way to gauge whether or not some trends suit you, and to practice your styling skills. One of my favorite things to look for in thrift shops are mom jeans. My favorite pairs are from Levi's and Stefanel, and I got them for less than a hundred pesos each!
I'm in no way claiming to be an ukay-ukay expert. I'm just a shoppaholic aiming to curb my need for nice clothes while still remaining on a student budget. This is merely an attempt at a general list of favorite areas to find ukay-ukay shops within Metro Manila.
Art by Leslie Uy
I talked to a couple of my friends who are frequent thrift shoppers, and these spots are their favorites:
- In terms of quality: Makati Cinema Square
- In terms of quantity: Cubao
- In terms of prices: Anonas
I really enjoy watching coolirpa's Thrifted Transformations series on YouTube. Maybe you could get some inspiration from her too.
I hope this map was helpful. Let me know your favorite places to go thrift shopping!